Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Coupon Organization

Someone wrote us and said "Tell us how you organize your coupons". So....here is the way I like to do it (which p.s.- is just one of the many great ways- it's what works for you!!). 

Organizing coupons can be a big task. It's hard to find something that works perfectly, because every way of organizing seems to have things about it that are annoying. When I started getting serious about couponing, I cut every. single. coupon. really. I even delegated my husband to cut. Um, this definitely got to be too much for me. and him. We almost got scissor fever and died. Sure, I could link up to every sale known to man. Sure, I could walk down the aisles and see things on sale not on my list and usually find a coupon for them. Ya know, since I cut every. single. coupon. really.
But I was almost dead by the time I got to the store.
I was using THREE coupon books. yes. three.
It was getting to be a tad insane.

So I decided to start trying the art of filing my coupons.
I bought this amazing and beautiful life saver at the container store.
It has 12 official compartments, but two extra slots in the back and one in the front.
I put each week's coupons in one compartment.
The back extra slots hold my All You magazines (filled with coupons!! are you a subscriber yet?? if not, wait for a deal on it...or buy a copy each month at Walmart) and any coupons that come in the mail.
At the end of 12 weeks, I will (haven't needed to do this yet) look through the first few weeks from the last 12-week-cycle and cut any that have not expired. put those in my coupon book. and file the new inserts in the front.

Perfect? No.
Much less time cutting (ultimate goal for me at this point...)? Yes.

*No more last minute deals in the store with my 3 trusty coupon books at hand.

*It is definitely harder to manage coupons that come in the mail or other sources other than the fliers.

*My new couponing life = Get the coupons in the mail. Flip through and cut ones I ALWAYS use. File. Done. The End. Have a snack. Celebrate with dessert.

*When I read the blogs and they say "Use the tomato paste coupon from the 1/22 SS", I just open my trusty filing folder, find the 1/22 section, pull out the smartsource and cut! No more scouring and searching through my whole "Can Goods" section for it. And before, if I couldn't find it, I had to wonder...did I already use that? did I lose that coupon?

*No more reorganizing coupon books and throwing away piles of unused, but took-the-time-to-cut coupons.

*No more battles with my what-to-do-with extra coupon inserts or wondering if I should cut every single coupon from every paper I buy each week (I usually buy between 3-5 papers a week, and that would be A LOT of cutting)
So, what do you think? Are you a filer? Do you love cutting coupons and having them with you at all times? Ideally, I would love to have my coupons with me all the time. But you know, with the cutting fever and all.... I had to makes some changes.

Ending Thoughts:
Really, either way works! Since I found my coupon hours short sometimes, I just wanted more time for finding great deals and less time for cutting tons of coupons. So for now, I love this way!

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