Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Building Your Coupon Binder

For your coupon filing system, just about any method will work depending on your needs. Thanks to "Extreme Couponing", I found the binder to be the most effective, cost conscious, and resourceful. I will be explaining here how to start organizing your new binder, as well as where to find your supplies.

To start, you will need a common 3-ring binder. You can find these at your local dollar store fairly cheap. I purchased my 1 1/2 inch binder for about 3 bucks at Family Dollar. Check the rings of the binder thoroughly to ensure that they open and close properly. Some have a small gap which is usually only a mere nuisance, but it can become troublesome once your binder begins to fill.

Next, you will need dividers to split up your coupons into categories for easier location. I purchased mine (again) from Family Dollar for a whole buck. They have different colored tabs which I became quickly accustomed to.

Finally, baseball card protector sheets make excellent pockets for you to put your coupons in for storage. You can use any sort of sheets that you can find similar though. I purchased mine from Wal Mart (OMG finally yes I do go to Wal Mart from time to time) for about $4.00 per package. Two packages have been enough for 2 binders (mine and my mother-in-law).

To start, you can research different ways people have divided up their categories to see if there is one that works for you easier, but I used my shopping list created from to help me to divide my binder. I have found that having the coupons inserted to where the item and amount is visible works best for me.

You may choose to use a Table of Contents page at the front of your binder to help you locate your categories. The same can be applied to each category for the coupons contained within, but this is time consuming. I find that I can almost tell you the amount and expiration date of coupons that I have though just from sorting and clipping.

Keep a note of expiration dates! It is heart breaking to have really great coupons go out of date before you have the opportunity to use them. If you make a post-it of the exp. dates, you can easily go through and pull the coupons that have expired.

Make your binder your own. No two people think the same or shop alike. If you get coupons you cannot use, try to find people who can. For example, I don't have children in diapers. My youngest is 7 years old. So when I get coupons for Huggies, Luvs, Pampers, or such, I either find a friend or relative that can use them, or take them to our Foodland and leave them for customers who can. I once purchased an envelope with 20 free coupons for $2.00 off Ensure 4 packs inside for a whole dollar from a seller on Ebay because the shipping was free. I simply stapled them to a cardboard square and hung them for the customers. Didn't benefit me directly, but I just know that someone was grateful for the savings. Don't just throw away your unwanted, valid coupons. Most stores have a box where you can donate them for others to use.

If you need any help in putting together your coupon store system, please feel free to say so. I will gladly help if I can.


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