Sunday, August 14, 2011

Extreme Couponing with Montebello Mom; save big by using coupons!

Last year I was at the checkout line at Albertsons. I had a cart full of groceries and a stack of coupons. A woman in line in front of me asked if she could stay to watch me check out. I told her she was welcome to watch. As the cashier scanned my coupons I saw the look of disappointment in her face when my total went down by only 60% instead of the 90+% on the Extreme Couponing shows. In Montebello 60% is about as "extreme" as it gets.

With the airing of the  "Extreme Couponing" series on TLC, many people are thinking seriously about using coupons. I've found in Los Angeles area it's nearly impossible to get deals similar to those featured on the show, here is a commentary from master-couponer, Jill Cataldo that explains why.

The way to get the best price on items from the drug or grocery store is to combine the lowest sale price + (store coupon when available) + manufacturer coupon. Buy as many items as you have coupons for and start growing a stockpile of items you use most. Even if you don't use coupons and stock up when prices are at their lowest you will save a lot of money.

I have a few favorite coupon/savings websites that I follow, all of them have a "Where to Start" section and match available coupons with weekly sales ads for all the drug and grocery stores in the area. All of them are on Facebook and if you post a question it'll be answered by the bloggers themselves or other experienced couponers.

To get started you'll need to start collecting coupons. The cheapest way is by subscribing to the LA Times. Call 1-800-LA-TIMES and tell them you heard about a $10 for a year of Sunday papers subscription rate and you'd like to sign up. You can ask for multiple papers to be delivered to your house at that rate, I suggest a minimum of 4 newspapers for a family of four and want to start saving a lot. The San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Whittier Daily News, and Long Beach Press Telegram papers have coupon inserts but they aren't as complete as the LA Times inserts.

Look through the junk mail before throwing it out. This past week I've found Bakery Outlet buy one get one free coupons in the PennySaver, two $10 off a $10 purchase coupon at JCPenny, and a $10 off a $20 purchase coupon for Kohls.

Create a disposable email account with hotmail, yahoo, aol, gmail or some other provider and use it exclusively for email coupon and free sample offers you run across online.

In the Montebello area I typical save 30-50% off nearly all my purchases. Click here to see my rock bottom stock up price list.
Once you get the hang of using coupons you'll love the feeling of saving money every time you shop!

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