Today's tutorial on coupon organization is the Binder Method. If want to read how to do the Filing-Box Method and where to find coupons you can read my post here. To get you started couponing today here's a tutorial how.
The Binder Method
Three-ring Binder (2 to 3 inches)
Baseball/Sports Pocket Protectors (I use 9-pocket protectors for coupons from Sunday inserts & 3-Pocket Currency And Coupon Size Binder Pages) I got mine from Amazon
Sheet Protectors (for keeping printed Store Policy)
Tab Dividers (I made-up my own using construction paper)
13-Pocket Poly Expanding File, Coupon Size (optional) I got mine from Staples
Step 1: Label your Tab dividers according to your categories. Different people have different categories. For example I have very detailed baby/toddler categories (baby food/formula, medicines, baby bath, baby clothes, toys, wipes & diapers) but i have general categories on other things and none on pets. You can use the layout of the store that you frequent most. This will allow you to open on one page while walking a particular aisle instead of flipping through your binder or running from aisle to aisle.
Step 2: After you have defined your categories, arrange your pocket page protectors. Initially put at least one 9-pocket & two 3-pocket protectors for each category. You can adjust the number according to your needs later.
Step 3: Cutting your coupons: Some people use Binder method only & cut all coupons each week. If you think this works for you here's how you can efficiently do it:
collate your inserts by tearing each page from the binding and putting the same page together, facing the same direction
- if you get two papers a week, you should have two of each page. Cut each coupon and put it into its category.
If you are like me, I cut only the coupons when I'm ready to shop. So I use the Filing-box method to keep my inserts. However, because I also get coupons from internet and from other sources, that's how I ended up using both Binder Method & Filing-Box Method. The combination allows me to organize loose coupons and whole inserts.
Step 4: Using 13-Pocket Poly Expanding File, Coupon Size (optional). Because we shop multiple stores, this little organizer comes in very handy in terms of getting all your coupons ready for check out. You can use it for either grouping coupons by transaction, or by store, etc. This is where I put my coupon from my binder if I see some great deals that's not on my list but I want to buy.
Step 5: Your turn. Decide today what method you want to use and don't delay. Coupons pile-up fast! The sooner you get organized the easier it will be for you to focus on saving money.
Next tutorial: Stock Pile
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