When I was fresh out of college and low on money, I searched for ways to save and came across extreme couponing.
I started clipping coupons, printing them out in mass quantities from internet sites, and even purchasing some on E-bay to get items I needed.
It wasn’t long before I built up a stockpile of both foods and household goods.
Unfortunately, I found that not everything I bought were things I needed. Some even expired before I could use them!
This led me to realize maybe extreme couponing wasn’t really saving me the money I thought it was.
Now, I still try to save on household goods and groceries, but I don’t do it with extreme couponing. Here’s what I do instead.
1. Shop Sales
Obviously one of the ways to save on household goods without extreme couponing is to watch for the items you frequently buy to go on sale.
If you pay attention to the sales flyers of the stores you shop at you will notice most have a cycle. Certain items will go on sale every few weeks and others every few months. If it helps, you could chart it so you can figure out the pattern easier.
The trick is to buy enough at the sale price to get you through to the next sale rather than stockpiling items as if tomorrow will be doomsday. Using this method of shopping frees up valuable real estate space in your home so you don’t have to find room for 20 packages of 36 count toilet paper, for example. Who has the space for that?
2. Get Rain Checks
If your store is out of a certain sale item, ask if they give a rain check. With a rain check you can purchase the item at the sale price once it becomes available again. I used this method recently to get boneless, skinless chicken for $0.69/lb!
3. Buy in Bulk
Even though I don’t extreme coupon, I am not saying you shouldn’t buy anything in bulk. Sometimes it makes sense to. For example, if you are planning for a major event and need a lot of certain items.
Additionally, you can sometimes buy in bulk and split items with a buddy who uses the same items as you. This allows you to save money without having to extreme coupon.
4. Order Online
Have you ever considered ordering some of the items you buy often from the internet? I use this tactic part of the time because I live in a small town and can’t always get to the city for some of the items I need. It saves me gas money as well as time, but it also prevents me from having to extreme coupon to save.
You can sign up for free two day shipping through Amazon Prime, for example. In addition, many places offer rewards, discounts, and cash back to help you save.
5. Buy Generic
My family members claim they can tell the difference between store brand chips and the major brands. I personally don’t care that much one way or the other. If there are certain items that you can buy generic instead of shelling out more money just to get the name brand, you will save without having to waste time clipping coupons.
I stopped extreme couponing because it takes too much time and I felt I wasn’t really saving that much in the end. But I now use the above methods to save money on household goods without extreme couponing as an alternative.
How do you save on household goods?