At the end of each month on this blog I will tally up my coupons and grocery expenses.
July $102.59 saved in coupons, $389.52 spent out of pocket on groceries after coupons.
In 2009, my first year of coupon use I saved $1,612.83. The tally could have been much higher but I refuse to buy things I don't need and try not to stockpile more than a 6 month supply of any one item.
My goal in 2010 is $2000 - but at the end of July my tally stands at $1009.81.
At this rate it seems unlikely I will hit my goal. Several factors stand in my way:
I currently have a 1 year supply of cereal - much higher than I normally stockpile. I hit upon a specific coupon that was printed on a cereal box that had a coupon for another free box of cereal. How did I stockpile so many? Buy 1, go home, cut off side, go back to store and repeat. Thank goodness my family likes Cornpops and Fruitloops. Last month I managed to get 22 cans of free tomatoes due to having $1 off coupon and the cans of tomatoes being exactly the same price. In December I got 17 free cans of mushroom soup the same way. In the last two weeks I have made two separate donations to the food bank and still have plenty left in the cupboards.
In addition to clipping coupons on occasion I enter contests. I won a free product coupon for Catelli pasta this month and got the family size box of spaghetti so am set for a little while on pasta.
So, you see I need very little other than meat, veggies, fruit and milk right now.
Before I started couponing on average I spent $1000-1200 per month in groceries counting cleaning supplies and toiletries. We are a family of six who at that time had four kids living with us every other weekend and the rest of the time just my husband and myself. Seems a bit ridiculous doesn't it? We spoiled ourselves as enjoyed cooking and did not eat out a lot.
After discovering coupons I halved the grocery limit down to an average of $600 out of pocket per month. We eat exactly the same way enjoying skinless boneless chicken breasts, shrimp and steak. I just shop differently.
This month was even lower as kids were at camp and I was trying to eat out some of what is left in my freezer.
So, even if I don't hit the magic number of $2000 this year in coupon savings I am still laughing all the way to the bank!