Photo by Darren Hester
I’ve teamed up with Propel® and DivineCaroline to write a series of inspiring and motivational posts to encourage women to enhance and streamline their lives. Propel’s mission is to enhance your life, give you the ability to move through obstacles and live a more streamlined, energetic life.
I cringe every time I hear someone say, “Why bother using coupons? All that clipping and hassle to save just a few cents . . . “ Chances are if you’re reading this post, you already know the amazing savings potential of coupons, but for those of you that may be on the fence, I just want to share what a powerful financial tool coupons can be.
We struggled for many years to get our finances in order. Having five children within the span of five years was never our intent, but it was a blessing we welcomed with open arms.
When I lost my job at 7.5 months pregnant with our first child, I was thrust into the position of being a stay-at-home mom. Couponing wasn’t a choice at that time; it was a necessity. As a first-year pipefitter’s apprentice, my husband’s wages barely covered our budget. Back then I used the Grocery Game to plan my shopping trips, and it felt good to be able to contribute something to our household finances in the way of big savings at the grocery store.
Fast-forward seven years through four more children and three layoffs, and we’ve been through even tougher times. Coupons were crucial to making it through those years that were such a struggle. With the advent of money-saving blogs, I was able to learn even more tips for saving, and I found that not only could I keep my pantry well stocked, but I was also able to give back to others by donating items that we could not use.
Today coupons are no longer a necessity for meeting our family’s budget, but I continue to use them. Why? Because the savings potential is much more than just a couple of cents here and there. Learning how to maximize our savings through coupons and careful budgeting has allowed us to build a substantial emergency fund, something I never thought we’d be able to do. Even more amazing than that, through the Cash For Clunkers program and a generous dealer incentive, we were recently able to purchase a new car with cash. I can’t even describe how good it felt to walk into that dealership knowing we had the upper hand and were in full control of our purchase.
You might be tempted to think that our family is just an isolated case, but there are examples of many other bloggers that have shared how instrumental coupons have been in living a debt-free life. Just look at Crystal from Money Saving Mom’s amazing goal of paying cash for a house. Or look at how Mercedes from Common Sense with Money was able to pay off her family’s new van within 6 months.
I’d like to encourage you all to see just how much you can save this week with coupons. If you’re new, you’ve got nothing to lose. The information is right at your fingertips, and it’s completely free. Even just $10 a week is a fantastic start, and I’m confident you can do it. I have a feeling that once you get started, you’ll start to wonder why you never do this sooner, and I look forward to you sharing your savings stories!
How did you enhance your life today? Chime in every day at You.Propelled on DivineCaroline for another chance to win $5,000 to pursue your dream. The more friends you bring, the better your chances of winning.
Thank you Tara for your amazing story.
I started couponing seriously since last May. Our income only comes from our rental property. Without a real job for both of us, it is really tough. I had to find a way to stretch every single pennies we have to support a family of 4. I stumbled upon your blog and love it so much.
Our grocery bill went down 50 %. It comes slowly but sure. First i thought, was it real ? Once I got so much stuffs for a dirt cheap, my confidence on couponing grew. Now, I won’t go shopping without a list on what the deals of the week are. Stick with it and I start building up my pantry. Hopefully I can catch up with you guys soon, the veteran couponers
I had on and off used coupons and used to get really excited about saving $20. However, when I got laid off only 13 days after having my son and needing to provide diapers for two and trying to become debt free I knew I would have to do more. I found all the money saving blogs through a couple of friends and have been amazed at how it has changed our lives. We not only spend less than we ever did before, but we also have more….WAY MORE! We have had to adjust some things – we are no longer brand specific on several things – but we also eat and use name-brand products more often than ever before. Couponing may be time consuming, but it is worth every minute. I was spreading the word and got one of my friends hooked, she and I are now coupon buddies! While my family is doing a no-spend month right now, she saved over $198 at target tonight and only spent a little over $7! She and I figured it up one day and with the amount we save through couponing and my being a stay-at-home mom now saving childcare I make WAY more than my husband in a month. In addition to that we are now able to GIVE like we never have before….I have become an entirely different and more generous person due to couponing. Thank you for all you do to help us make a better life for our families with the money we save!
Thank you all so much for sharing YOUR inspiring stories! I loved reading all of them.
This post was wonderful. I have been on your site since April, and your site is what got me couponing. I cannot thank you enough for all the wonderful tips you put on your site!
My husband and I have a LOT of debt, loans and credit cards, and have been digging ourselves deeper in the hole for the past couple of years. Your site helped me gain a new perspective on the way that I spend – that I have a choice! I had never made a budget before I started on your site. I had never once clipped a coupon, and barely had any food in the fridge, let alone the freezer! Now I track every dollar of our spending, I am an avid couponer, I have a large stockpile of food in the pantry, freezer, and H&B and cleaning items I got 60%+ off of retail price! I am able to take the money we were spending on fast food and expensive retail items and put them towards our debt, savings, gift fund, vacation fund, and (my favorite) things for our beautiful 1 year old daughter!
We were on the brink of filing bancruptcy within 6 months of coming onto your site, because I didn’t think there was any way to pay our bills, noneless pay on our debt. I have been stretching every dollar since then for all its worth, and guess what? We have a roof over our head, food in our mouths, and an appreciation for every hard earned dollar we spend or save. :) It is not just the time it takes to coupon vs. the money the coupon saves you, it’s changing your mindset, your lifestyle, and making a better life for your family.
I agree with you completly!!
I just wish I had known this many years ago when all of my children were little and still at home! To think of all the money I could have been putting on bills just drives me nuts!
I am so glad I ran across sites like this about 3-4 months ago and have already saved so much money and have so much more stuff!!haha That is the thing you really do get more stuff for so much less money.
I have a pretty good stockpile already and it just feels good to know I can just run down stairs to get what it is I need.
I do have a ? tho. Should I still be doing the Grocery game or am I getting all I need to know by reading about 15 sites alot like this one?
Thank You for such a helpful easy site to learn from.