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Are you a new frugal mom who's trying to stretch her family's budget, get dinner on the table, and stay sane in the chaos of modern family life?

The New Frugal Mom is a site dedicated to sharing practical ideas for frugal living to help you save both time and money.

January 7, 2009

Back to Basics: Couponing

I started my B2B {Back to Basics} series about building a realistic working budget for your household, with the first step, tracking your spending, discussed here.

But for those of you who are already have a good handle on your household budget and expenses, I want to also get a jump start on my the B2B series about couponing that I had planned for February.

I've been couponing - some months more diligently and more effectively than others - for the past year. In my best months, I've been able to triple my buying power, meaning that for every $1.00 I spent, I actually purchased $3.00 worth of goods. Even in the months when I slacked a bit, or when the deals or coupons weren't as stellar, I was able to double my buying power, getting $2.00 of goods for each $1.00 spent.

While that doesn't seem like much in those small dollar amounts, think about how much you currently spend each week on groceries, toiletries, household cleaners, and paper products. Maybe $100? Or $150? Or $200?

Shave 50% off those numbers and you've got $50 or $75 or $100. Or shave 66% off that number and you've got $33 or $50 or $66.

If you could find a way to get $200 dollars worth of groceries and household products for $100 dollars (or for a little more - or, if you're very, very good - for a little less), week after week, wouldn't you do it?

Think of what that extra money you saved on groceries and household goods could do for the rest of your household budget.

Maybe you, like me, are in the process of slaying the consumer debt dragon; that extra money could help you speed up the payoff process.

Maybe you're saving for a down payment on your new home in this new era of tighter mortgage loan requirements.

Or maybe you're looking down the dual barrels of your retirement and your child's college tuition and realizing that you need to save more money to fund either one.

We all have different reasons and different priorities when it comes to improving our financial health, but the goal we all share is to save money. Using coupons to lower your spending on groceries and household products is a great way to keep those dollars in your pocket.

But it is a time-consuming process, particularly in the beginning when you need to give yourself time to gather a good supply of coupons and learn the ropes. Sometimes that time you spend reading blogs, trying to figure out scenarios, and clipping coupons seems too great to be worth the effort or just plain too confusing.

Don't give up, and don't think of that time as wasted.

Think of it as investment in your financial future.

On Friday, I'll post the first part of my next series, Back to Basics: Couponing.

I hope you'll join me and share both your questions if you're new to the process and share your expertise if you already wear your own Coupon Queen crown.

What's the best tip you have for new couponers? Or what's the number one question you have if you're new to couponing in general? Share both in a comment below and I'll highlight them in my series with credit to you. Thanks!


  1. Great tips. Also so glad to see you back up online Marianne with New Frugal Mom!!

  2. Thanks so much for stopping by and for the good words, Kyle! I hope you're having much success over at your site.

    Everyone: Kyle runs Rather-Be-Shopping, a great resource for online coupon codes. And he's a very nice guy, too! He'll search for an online q for you if you can't find what you need.


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