The following is guest post written by Christina at Northern Cheapskate.
Clipping coupons, freebie hunting, and shopping for deals is a lifestyle choice. It takes patience and time and creativity to save money when you shop. Your whole family must be on board if you’re going to make couponing a part of your frugal lifestyle.
Here are a few ideas to help your family adjust to couponing.
1) Teach your family to watch for coupons in the stores and on packaging. Teach them not to toss out coupon inserts. Show your family how to clip and organize coupons. Your kids can help you sort through the expired ones each month.
2) Teach your family how to calculate unit price. This will help them figure out what the better deals are. Sometimes you can get items for free or close to free when you use a coupon on the smallest size package rather than just buying the big package.
3)Teach your family to read the fine print. If you send your husband or older kids to shop with your coupons, be sure to teach them how to read the fine print, so that they know exactly what size, quantity and type of items to purchase. If you don’t follow the fine print, you can’t save. (And you’ll get a hard time from the store clerks).
4)Teach your family to abandon brand loyalty. Brand loyalty costs you money. Sometimes the best deals are on brands that you don’t regularly use or have never tried before. Sometimes the best prices are on store brands. If your family learns to adjust to whatever is in the pantry, you’ll have an easier time saving money.
5)Teach your family that some deals are rare. Sometimes great deals happen once in a blue moon. Sometimes you only get a few great free samples in the mail. Make sure that family members don’t get attached to a particular brand just because you’ve stocked up on it during an amazing sale.
6) Teach your family to respect the stockpile. If you’re using coupons and finding the best deals, you’re going to eventually have a large stash of food and toiletries in your house. Teach your family how to keep your stockpile organized (i.e. by expiration date) and to report to you when an item is getting low so that you can watch for sales on that item.
7) Teach your family that coupons are the same as money. Show them how much you’ve saved using coupons. Use that savings for a fun experience for the family – maybe a new video game or a family outing. They will learn that while it does take time to save money with coupons, it is time well spent.
For more coupons, freebies, and money-saving ideas, visit Northern Cheapskate.