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Think you’ve got a talent for saving money? You may be good at getting clothes, accessories, home repairs, and your cellphone service at great prices, but one area where most people don’t even try to save money is in the basic grocery shopping they do at least once a week.

The average American spends $650 – $850 a month on groceries, pet supplies, cleaning products, and toiletries. Because these basic items tend to be inexpensive to begin with, as well as necessary for daily life, people think that saving on them isn’t worth their time.

However, if you spend $750 a month on basic household goods, just by cutting back on your spending by 20%, you could save an extra $1800 for the year. The best way to cut back on your spending without sacrificing purchase quality? Coupons!

Extreme Couponing

You may have heard of the TV show Extreme Couponing, featuring shoppers that clip and count and save for major deals. Although the shoppers featured on TV are on the extreme end of the couponing spectrum, you too can take advantage of some of their tactics to save on groceries.

Combine store coupons with manufacturer’s coupons

Most people think you can only use one coupon per item you buy. Not so! If you’ve got a coupon to save 10 cents on canned soup at Stop&Shop, why not scrounge for a coupon directly from the Campbell’s company?

If you’ve got manufacturer’s coupons already, wait until the item you want goes on sale at your local store, and benefit from double savings.

Stay organized

Piggy-backing on the tip from above, if you want to combine coupons for maximum benefits, you better know what you already have! Stay organized with a binder or filing system, with clear labels for each type of coupon (Ex: Soup, Toiletries, Fruits & Veggies, etc.).

Get Creative In How You Acquire Coupons –

Sure, you’re likely to find a few nice coupons in the weekly mailing your grocery store sends you in the mail, or in the newspaper inserts. But there are other creative ways to access coupons:

  1. Write a letter to the company you want coupons from

Generally, manufacturers love sending you their coupons, in hopes that they will inspire customer loyalty and that you will continue to buy their brand forever, coupon or no coupon. If you write a few letters to companies like General Mills, Kraft, Butterball, Lysol, etc, saying how much you like their product, they might respond with a few coupons and free samples to boot!

  1. The Internet

A simple Google search for the coupons you want will result in a treasure trove of coupon opportunities. Some good sites you can visit regularly include:

  • Coupons.com
  • Groupon.com
  • CouponMom

Additionally, mobile apps like Honey help you save while on-the-go.

Extreme couponing doesn’t have to take over your life. But with just a small amount of effort and attention to which coupons you’re using, you could save enough for the fun NON-necessities like a new car, a vacation…wherever your new savings take you!