Thanks to Moms by Heart for these great "easy to start instructions"
1) SET A GOAL TO ESTABLISH A STOCKPILE - As you collect coupons, keep in mind that you are purchasing to build a stockpile of nonperishables: canned goods, paper products, toiletries, etc. Think about setting a goal to have 6-12 months of these products on hand. By doing this, you eliminate buying out of necessity, which is when you pay the most. For example: if you have a stockpile of shampoo, you'll be able to wait three months until it's at its rock bottom price before buying more. In contrast, if you're out of shampoo, you'll gladly pay the shelf price for it! Remember STOCKPILING doesn't mean hoarding...buy for a limited time as you don't want items to EXPIRE and you want to be able to SHARE with others.
2) START YOUR COUPON STASH! - The two best places to find coupons are the internet and newspaper inserts. Lets talk about those first.
-Newspaper Inserts - Consider buying multiple copies of the newspaper (check with friends and family that don't clip).
-Internet Printables - A Full Cup has a comprehensive list of internet printable coupons.
I encourage you to print coupons from http://www.couponmama.org/ because a portion of all clicks go to charity.
3) MATCH COUPONS WITH SALES - This is where I lose most people. I start to hear the "it's too hard/too confusing/I don't have time" excuses. Well, I'm not buyin' it, sister! I'm not denying that it can be overwhelming at first. But it's like anything else - you learn the ropes slow but sure, and get into a routine. Pretty soon it's a breeze. Start by visiting Moms by Heart each Saturday morning to see my Walgreens coupon match ups. Plan to buy one or two things free with coupon until you feel comfortable enough to fill your cart with freebies.
Okay, now back to step 3 - matching coupons with sales. Here's an example that shows why it works:
If Softsoap hand soap is $2.29 and you have a $.35 off coupon, that's not going to do you much good right? But if you wait for the soap to go on sale for $.99 THEN use your coupon, your OOP will be $.64 or 72% off the regular price! If you have 3 coupons for Softsoap, you will pay less for 3 than you normally do for 1. The extra two go into your stockpile and you don't have to buy hand soap until it goes on sale again! Taadaaa!
The match ups are usually done for you right here just click on the grocery lists and print off to match what you need.