Let’s sit down and have a talk. Who out there is tired? Long week, overworked, in need of some sun and warmth? Then you open your checkbook only to see that those groceries and taxables we all need every week are costing you hundreds of dollars each week to keep up with.

Now let’s think about how we can make things a little easier and keep a whole lot more money in your pocketbook. By making some small, simple changes, you can turn that extra savings each month into a vacation, extra spending money or extra purchase if you wish. All it takes are a few easy changes and you will be on the road to savings in no time. Let me help you begin this with some tips.

Figure out what your family needs.

  • Sit down and make a couple of lists. What does the household need to run successfully? How many rolls of toilet paper do you go through in a month? How much toothpaste? If you are not sure, guess and right down a number. Put anything that you buy on a regular basis on this sheet.

Make a separate sheet for your groceries. What kinds of things are a staple in your house? What snacks do you have to have on hand? What does your husband bring in his lunch every day? Again, add everything to the list that is bought on a regular basis. Then make a side list of extras. These are the things you may splurge on. Special treats, wine, a better cut of steak, etc. Make a list for all of those things as well.

Narrow down the necessities:

  • Once you have your lists in front of you, narrow it down and organize it to your exact needs. Then you can really begin to see what you should be buying each week. Really try to pay attention to only what your family needs, so that when you take the list with you, you can stick to it and keep within your budget.

Add sales flyers to the mix:

  • By looking at the paper each week and studying the flyers, you will begin to see the sale cycles. You will begin to see when things go on sale, and how often it happens.

Start cutting those coupons:

  • Now you have a list, you have checked out the sales, and you can see the items that are on sale. Now look for coupons. By matching coupons, you will immediately lower the out-of-pocket price each week.

These are simple but effective ways to begin to save money for your family each week. If you start small and begin to learn the process, before you know it you will have a great stockpile of items your family needs and some cash saved as well.

In my class at The Post-Star, I go into detail about using coupons, saving money, finding monthly deals and how it will benefit your family. We are in the process of planning the class’s upcoming dates. Feel free to call 518-742-3309 or go to poststar.com/coupon class for more information.

Head over to my blog at Making Cent$ About Extreme Couponing to find some great deals around the region this week. These will point you in the right direction to saving more money. Post your questions, comments and deals in the comments section. Let’s start saving money together.

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Kimberly Butler is a mom, wife and child care provider located in Queensbury and writes a weekly column for The Post-Star. Write to her at kimberlybutlerthepoststar@gmail.com or visit her Making Cent$ About Extreme Couponing Blog at poststar.com/blogs/making_cents.


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