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Funny. Ambitious. Loving. Fixed in opinion and stubborn when confronted. Dreaming and planning for the future. Bookworm at heart.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Coupons and Budgeting

Here’s another couponing/savings post. I’ve been couponing for a few months now and my stockpile has been growing but sometimes I feel like I’m overspending. Couponing here and there starts adding up. Yes, my total out of pocket expense may not be as much but every dollar counts. We all know that keeping track of your coupon spending is key to saving. With that said, for the month of May I have decided to create a budget. My budget is split into two categories: Couponing and Groceries. My couponing budget for the month of May is $80 (tax included) and my grocery shopping budget is $200 for a family of three.
Before couponing, I was spending $400 a month in groceries and maybe around $80-$100 on drugstore items such as hair products, toiletries, medicine, etc.

I purchased a notebook in which I write down all my transactions for the week. I look at my receipt and jot down the date, store, and transactions I did for that day. I then include the coupons I used, the sub-total, tax, and my total out of pocket. I also write down if I received any Extra Care Bucks, Register Rewards, Up Rewards, or Gift Cards. Luckily, most stores do the calculations for you and tell you how much you saved on your trip. So at the end of the week, I add up my total out of pocket and my total savings. I then add both my OOP and Savings, divide that number by the OOP and I then get my percentage.

For example:
Week of 4/29-5/5:
Groceries—OOP: $74.24, Saved: $74.62 = $148.86
Divide the total OOP of $74.24 to $148.86= 0.498, move the decimal point two spaces to the right = 50% savings!!

I hope this all makes sense. I know there are spreadsheets out there that calculate everything for you but I like to write everything down and see what coupons I used and what not.

See below for some pics of my notebook.

Untitled Untitled
The yellow highlight is my total OOP for that transaction.
At the end of the week, I add those up and come up with my total OOP for the week. 

I know this sounds very confusing because it’s confusing to me but I know that creating this budget will help me see where my money is going and how much I am actually saving.
If you have any questions, please feel free to leave me a comment and I’ll be more than happy to answer. 
Happy Couponing!!


Jessica said...

im trying to start this too i love the idea and need to find time for the coupons lol

Celia said...

i have a headache looking at that lol but i save by not shopping, seems to help haha jk

MZ.CYN said...

@Jessica - it is very time consuming so start of slow. @Celia- girl I had a headache at first too but now it's all I think about... Saving money and getting stuff for almost free. Lol

Monica said...

wow i need to start clipping some coupons since it will save me some $$. I do use an excel spreadsheet to calculate my monthly budget.