How to organize coupons
I took a break from organizing my coupons and the picture above is what happens when school starts followed by three major holidays. When my coupons are a mess, my brain is a mess and I can’t coupon as well. Plus, it takes time organizing all those pieces of shiny paper that come EVERY week!
Here are three different ways to organize your coupons in no time at all! Whether you have ten minutes, an hour, or somewhere in between, there’s a system that will work for your lifestyle.
Whole Insert Filing Method
Time needed per week: 10 minutes
This method is for those who are busy or simply want to spend less time cutting coupons and more time on Pinterest.
Step 1: Stack your inserts.
Step 2: Write the date you receive the insert big and bold on the front of each insert. (*Hint: You can use a magnifying glass to find the date on the teeny tiny spine of each insert.)
Step 3: Place the entire insert into a file folder or clear plastic page protector in a binder.
How to coupon with this method: Every deal we post here on Frugal Living NW has a coupon reference. When you spot a deal you want, open your binder, flip through until you find that insert and cut out the coupons you will use.
How to maintain with this method: Go through your binder every three to four months to discard expired coupon inserts.
Get more detailed instructions on how to organize your coupons inserts whole here.
Whole Insert Filing Method II
Time needed per week: 20-30 minutes
This method is for those who want to see every single coupon, but do not want to cut coupons.
Step 1: Stack your inserts.
Step 2: Starting with one insert, take apart the entire insert laying each page out onto the table. Take your second insert and stack its pages to match the first insert. Continue with the remainder of your inserts.
Step 3: Place each page into a clear plastic page protector in a binder. Place a label at the beginning of the pages to indicate the insert date and type. (1/5 SS = January 5 Smart Source insert)
How to coupon with this method: Every deal we post here on Frugal Living NW has a coupon reference. When you spot a deal, open your binder and flip through until you find that insert. Continue to search each individual page for that specific coupon and then cut the coupons you will use.
How to maintain with this method: Go through your binder every one to two months to discard expired coupons.
Coupon Binder (or Box) Method
Time needed per week: 30-60 minutes
This method is for those who want to see every coupon and organize them into categories. This is helpful for those who regularly shop the clearance section as you have every coupon imaginable on hand.
Step 1: Stack your inserts as pictured above.
Step 2: Starting with one insert, take apart the entire insert laying each page out onto the table as pictured above. Take your second insert and stack its pages to match the first insert. Continue with the remainder of your inserts.
Step 3: Cut every single coupon in the insert.
Step 4: Place each coupon in a baseball card holder pocket, organized by category. (Baby, Cereal, Cleaning, Food Storage, Medicine, Snacks, etc.)
How to coupon with this method: Every coupon is cut and ready to go. You can simply walk into a store and coupon until your heart’s content!
How to maintain with this method: Go through your binder once a month to discard expired coupons.
As for me, I am a combo girl. I like to see every single coupon, but I don’t like to cut every single coupon. I also shop the clearance sections at my stores.
Solution: I have two binders. My first binder is for my insert sheets. My second binder is filled with cut coupons that are organized by category. I only cut coupons I know I will use or would use if I found the item on clearance. For example, I cut all cereal and dairy coupons, but rarely cut make-up coupons. My second binder also helps me keep my printable coupons organized.
Looking to build your coupon binder? Amazon has two different products that will be perfect for any of the organization options described above: Avery Economy Clear Sheet Protectors, Acid Free, Box of 100 and Ultra Pro 25/9 Pocket Page Protectors (baseball card sized).
New to couponing? Check out our Ultimate Guide to Couponing in the Northwest!
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