Let’s start with the most basic part of beginning couponing: the supplies. This is what I recommend.
- A Sunday only newspaper subscription (be sure it is a paper that carries Red Plum, Smart Source and P&G coupons). Don’t ever pay more than the price of paying for one at the store. If you keep your eyes open, you might find a deal on Groupon. I just signed up for 26 Sunday papers for $17!
- I purchase 0-5 additional newspapers per week. To figure out how many more I want to buy, I check Sunday Coupon Preview to find out how many inserts there will be and get an idea of the coupon quality. If the paper has 0-1 insert, I sometimes pass on purchasing any additional. If there will be 2 coupon inserts, I might buy 2-4 papers depending on the quality of the coupons. For papers with 3-5 inserts, I buy 4-5 more. Note: photocopying coupons is illegal and considered theft by stores. They do not get reimbursed from the manufacturer for illegally reproduced coupons.
- A coupon binder with dollar bill or card holders. I use a zip-up 3-ring Mead binder. I don’t spend tons of time organizing it–I just out my coupons and stick them in a slot. Each Saturday night, I spend about 10 min to remove any expired coupons.
- A simple printer. You’ll have some expense with the ink, but it’s worth it (I buy recycled ink cartridges online). Just be sure to set it on fast draft/black ink only. Most of the coupons I print come from coupons.com; redplum.com and smartsource.com. Most require you to download a coupon printer thing to your computer—it’s a must do. Online coupons are very important to have as they usually are higher value than those in the newspaper.
- Book mark SouthernSavers.com Coupon Database. It’s a very up-to-date, searchable database of current (legit) coupons available online or in previous newspapers. So if you know you need Axe body spray, but you don’t know if you have a coupon, just search “Axe”.
Note: With most of the coupon websites, you get to print each coupon twice. If you have more than one computer in the house, you can get twice the coupons. The print limits are per computer, not household.