Couponing for the Economy

In today’s up and down economy, it’s important to save money any way possible. But most consumers don’t want to sacrifice quality for savings, and that’s completely understandable. You can achieve your financial goals by budgeting and saving your money. The following budgeting and cost-cutting techniques can help you enjoy a better lifestyle now, help you save for the future, or both.

One of the many ways to achieve a sound budget is through Couponing. Consumers everywhere save money with grocery store coupons, carpet cleaning coupons and more. These and other considerations can effectively help you put money in your pockets.

Budget Considerations :

Income vs. Expenses : To create a budget that’s truly going to work in the long run, you must know what your income and outgoing expenses are. Determine your income by adding up all income you receive over the course of one month, including pay from work and money from child support, rental tenants and any other source. Now add up your outgoing expenses. Include your rent or mortgage, utilities, loans and credit card payments, transportation costs, groceries and any other monthly bills. Subtract outgoing expenses from income. The money left is what should be divided between savings and splurges, such as your morning caffeine fix at the local cafe.

Budget-Conscious Changes : If you’re left with a small amount or no money after subtracting monthly expenses from your income, then it’s time to make some budget-conscious changes. Many utility companies offer budget plans to make payments more manageable. Consolidate credit card debt and reduce the amount of finance charges you’re paying by transferring credit balances to one account. Small changes in your expenses can add up to big savings in the long run.

Extra Cash : Turn your talents or unwanted household items into cash. Put advertisements in the neighborhood for babysitting, dog walking, landscaping or tutoring. If you’ve got a special skill or talent, you can use it to earn money. Likewise, the unwanted items collecting dust in your home, basement or garage can also be turned into extra cash. Sell these items on eBay, Craigslist or have a garage sale.

Savings Techniques :

Smart Spending : Impulse shopping is a surefire way to run out of money before the next paycheck arrives. Smart spenders take time to plan out their purchases by dividing them into “needs” and “wants,” then they shop around for the best deal. Before you make a purchase ask yourself if it’s something you need or want. If you don’t need it, you might be better off walking away and saving the money for something else. Some of those unwanted items you’re going to sell are likely the results of impulse shopping.

Couponing : Coupons aren’t just for grocery shopping. Although you can save hundreds of dollars at the grocery store, you can also save money on household and yard services, dining out and at other retail stores. Couponing sites and smartphone apps such as Google Wallet,, and can help you with your couponing efforts, even making couponing fun to do. To maximize your money-saving efforts, subscribe to sites that will send you coupons specific to your lifestyle needs and interests.

Frugality : If you’re a smart and careful shopper who uses coupons religiously then you’re already practicing frugality. Don’t confuse being frugal with being cheap; these are not one in the same. Frugality is the practice of avoiding wastefulness. Recycle, reuse and repurpose as much as possible to save money and be environmentally-conscious. Use cold water to wash clothing and dishes to save energy. Carpool with your coworkers. Any efforts you make to incorporate frugality into your lifestyle have the power to provide you with extra money in your bank account.

Achieving a budget that allows you to pay bills on time and enjoy life is a task that requires balance. Both incoming and outgoing money must be considered to create a budget that results in the financial state you wish to achieve.

Couponing is an excellent way to avail discounts that will help you save on expenses while preserving your income for other things. Include couponing and these other budgeting and saving techniques in your smart money practices to reduce debt, raise income and help yourself achieve the lifestyle you desire to enjoy.