I use the filing system. It's really easy and great for those of us who are too lazy, er busy (raising hand here) to cut out every single coupon and put them into a binder. For me, it is way easier to just take the entire insert and stuff it into a file folder.
This is my personal coupon box. In it houses numerous files. Mine are pretty straight forward.
- Kroger mailers (or whatever local grocery store you may have)
- Red Plum
- Smart Source
- P&G monthly
- Printed Coupons
- Random coupons
That is the first section of my filing box. A quick explanation of the files. For the RP and SS I actually have 3 folders. One for the current month and the past two months. I have them filed oldest for newest and with the spines facing up (as seen in the picture) so that they are easy to spot and grab. If I have 2 identical inserts, I place one inside the front cover of the other so that they are together(small disclaimer here, I always have at least 2 inserts. Grammy gives me hers weekly..yay!). The printed coupons are usually in the full paper sheets that print off of the computer. Those honestly don't stay in the folder very long, unless the store is out of them when I go and then I will place them back in there. Random coupons are just that. They are coupons that I pull off of other products at home or random coupons that are sent in the mail. You know, those onsie or twosies that have no where else to go.
Now the back portion of the file box holds these folders, I think they are pretty self explanatory.
- Rain checks
- ECB & RR(Extra Care Bucks & Register Rewards. CVS and Walgreens respectively)
- Current Weeks Ads
The back portion of the box holds scissors, envelopes, a composition notebook and pens. Those are the supplies I use, although I have seen different things like those Post-It flags, paper clips, and highlighters. Now, if you're wondering about the envelopes, well I use those for each store. In my town (within 5 minutes)I have a Target, Wal-Mart, Kroger, Meijer, CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid and Marsh. So, each store has an envelope (that gets recycled for each visit) and before I head out shopping coupons are put into the corresponding envelope. This was a something I started as the kids have gotten older. I write up my list and put the item/cost/coupon amount on a page in the composition notebook. I separate the items by store just to make it easy. Then I head out to the store. I always keep the envelopes in the notebook.
Now, an idea that I got from Andrea atSavingsLifestyle long ago dealt with what I called "fast mover" coupons. Those I used to keep in my purse at all times, just in case I saw a great deal or was in need of the item. These were always at my fingertips. Personally, that envelope used to contain diaper, wipes, baby food, kid friendly snacks, juice coupons. I don't use this idea anymore, since we are now past most of those stages. They did come in very handy at the time I used it though!
Anyway, this is my method of filing coupons. I believe Andrea will have her post up soon or just add onto this one, I'm not really sure. Feel free to ask any questions or add any ideas. I'm always open to suggestions!
**You know, after this was published I read it and realized I didn't tell you how I match the coupons to the sales. Truthfully, I use various sites SavingsLifestyle, Deal Seeking Mom, Bargain Briana, and the coupon database at Hot Coupon World. They typically list the coupon, amount on the coupon and whether it's a printable or not. If it's not, they will list the insert it was found in. For example $2/Pull-Ups 4/3/11 SS. This lets me know that there was a $2 off coupon for Pull-Ups in the April 3 Smart Source. Then I just pull out that insert, find the coupon and cut it out and refile when I'm completely finished.**