Extreme Couponing Tip: When enough is enough


When Enough is Enough – Tips for Effective and Efficient Couponing

I love shopping with coupons and getting items for free and cheap as much as the next person, but through my years of experience I have learned when enough is enough. I don’ t mean that I have stopped shopping with coupons, but rather I have learned how to shop the sales and to build my stockpile so that I only need to go occasionally now, instead of every week.

When I first started using coupons, I felt like I had to get every deal, shop every sale and make sure I used as many of my coupons as possible. I spent a lot of time clipped them and sorting them into a binder, and more time sorting the ads and figuring out my couponBagshopping lists. I don’t regret all that time and work, because we got a lot of nice stuff for really cheap, but I have come to learn that it doesn’t need to be that way for me to be a couponer.

I think people get caught up in the craze of using coupons and forget that the sole purpose it to save money and time. I have heard all of the stories from people – those who feel so overwhelmed from spending so much time using coupons, to those who won’t touch them with a 10 foot pole. Here is my advice – everything in moderation. Using coupons is essential if you want to cut your monthly spending on groceries and household items, BUT you don’t have to feel overwhelmed or spend hours planning and shopping to get the best deals! Here are my tips to be a efficient but effective couponer:

  • Figure out what you have right now (use this free Tracking sheet) and what you use – so you know how much and what you need to buy
  • Start watching the sales in your area. This will get you familiar with the prices of items that you buy regularly and what a good price it. (you can use this free price point list)
  • Start collecting coupons (printed, newspaper, digital, direct) And organize them in a Messenger BAG with file folders marking the date. (learn more about that here)
  • When you find an item for a great price, buy several of them – this is called stockpiling. That way you can “shop” from your pantry instead of paying full price for them when you need it again.
  • If you have found a good deal (or several of them) and have a good stockpile built up, don’t worry about shopping for that item again for a while, until your supply starts getting lower. Only buy it as fast as you can use it. You don’t need 30 bottles of body wash,, if you only use one every two months…learn when enough is enough and focus on other items you need.
  • You won’t find a coupons or sale for everything you need, but that is why using coupons helps…use the money you saved with coupons to buy the other things you need.
  • Make a list – a grocery list, a stockpile list, a menu list – making lists will help you keep better track of where you are and what you need. Menu’s also help you stay more organized in the kitchen and healthier food stocked up.

What do you think? Tell me about how you know when enough is enough.

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  1. says

    Building my stockpile took about 6 months. Now I am careful to pay attention to how much we use and when items will be on sale again. There are a lot of repeats for coupons and sale times so its easy to follow.

  2. says

    Coralie, these are great points! I felt the same way when I first started couponing.. if there was a sale and I had a coupon, I felt like I HAD to do that deal! I’m much more relaxed about it now. I only grab items if we need them or I am donating to a charity that has requested that item. Thanks for a great post!

  3. Katelyn McKim says

    I never like hoarding stuff, especially if someone needs something. I keep my eye out for stuff for my family :)

  4. Laura Smith says

    I have had to cut back due to my disability for the last 2 1/2 years, so now I get some deals but just the things I know I will use or can donate. I have a great stockpile, grandkids, kids, mom, brothers all come to my house to visit and shop, they all live at least 2 hours away so it does not happen very much

  5. Jackee says

    Good article. I have learned a lot by practicing couponing. I hate is when I over bought and have cut back.

  6. tracy webb says

    Your right, if I find I have too much I give it to someone who can use it. A single mom always needs a little help.

  7. Seyma Shabbir says

    I agree, I think even I feel coupon burnout at times. The stress of keeping up with organizing coupons and sales is sometimes too much. I used to get things when free even if I did not use it, now I only buy the things I need and use.

  8. Chelsea reboulet says

    There is a line between stockpiling and hoarding it has become an obsession for a lot of people, now no more double coupons in my area!

  9. brandi hawn says

    i totally agree, i can’t stand when ppl get too many products then they can actually use it’s disgusting :)

  10. Brooke Adametz says

    I realized enough was enough when I was sitting in my pantry staring at 50+ boxes of fruit snacks I had to find room for. From now on I only buy 5 tops of anything, and I only regularly shop at one or two stores- and I can breathe (and walk through the pantry LOL) much easier!

  11. Mary Fagans says

    I watch Extreme Couponing sometimes, and I think it’s crazy!! I agree with you, everything in moderation!!

  12. Donna C says

    I’ve come to the realization that while I love finding the fantastic deals and saving a bunch of money, it’s only a savings if I actually use the products. If it’s something I normally wouldn’t buy or use, then I pass the great deal up. I keep a small stockpile and shop sales as the stockpile begins to diminish. I don’t buy 10 of something just because I can.

  13. Jessica Fortner says

    I love couponing, but with the kids and all of our activities, I just don’t have the time to do the extreme couponing. I’d rather spend that time doing other things.

  14. Julie Lynn says

    I love your tracking sheet, thanks for all your help. And I agree with the others about when you clear the shelves at the store when you know you couldn’t possibly use that much product, I believe in sharing and everyone deserves a great deal. And sharing is a big part of why I coupon, I donate monthly to my local homeless shelters to help out others who are less fortunate.

  15. ashley metzger says

    Yeah, I realized I had to be realistic about my couponing. I CAN buy something even if I don’t have a coupon, sometimes you need things that aren’t on sale =/

  16. clarissa says

    i have come to the realization that I just do not have time to spend doing much with coupons. I also do not have a desire to have stockpiles of things like toilet paper in my home…an extra package..sure…maybe even two on items we go through quckly…but oodles of things sitting around is not appealing to me..even if they were “deals”!

  17. Rebecca Lambracht says

    Thanks for the great advice, I do couponing every once in a while, but many of my coupons expire before I use them, I really like the idea of putting them in a date folder. And will try that!

  18. Nicole W says

    I think when it becomes more stressful and time consuming than just a fun money-saving thing, enough is enough!

  19. Mariah Wessell says

    That was very interesting as I’ve just started couponing again & feel that it’s very time consuming & the binder is a bit hard o keep up with.

  20. elizabeth anderson says

    clearing the shelves for a product you would not even use is crazy, and going too far. Some people DO donate though, and that is GREAT! I will get more than I know I will use and share with family and friends, but I try to only get what will be used.

  21. Kim Scott Barton says

    When I started I spent a lot of time trying to organize…I stll clip all of the coupons I have and use suggested deals from bloggers but I also try to share some I kw I wll never use

  22. Amy Orvin says

    I agree. Using coupons and saving money is great, but worrying about where I am going to store everything is always on my mind. Yes, I stock up on certain items I really need. I just don’t let it consume me.


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