Saturday, July 19, 2008

Tips For beginners Part 2

I am constantly trying to stretch every dollar, so that we can afford the things that we need everyday! It is a tough challenge. I however, have learned that there is a method that can be used to free up some much needed cash, by using coupons, bargain shopping, using sales, rebates, and applying for freebies online.

This method is called "Stockpiling." What is it? How do you do it? And why should I do it? In this post, I will try my best to answer those questions. But, remember, I am also still learning - I am not a professional! I am still working on my stockpile. It took me awhile to understand this concept. When you are living paycheck, to paycheck, you tend to think, " If I don't need it, don't buy it." But now that I understand stockpiling, it makes more sense to me to do this!

So, What is Stockpiling?
Basically, it is finding a great deal on an item, then not buying one, or two, but as many as you can at the great deal price. This requires you to have several coupons, as many as possible, for as many products as possible.

Most Frugal Bloggers recommend stockpiling at least 3 months worth of basic items that your family will use on a daily basis. Some items to include in your stockpile could be anything from shampoos, toothpaste, deodorant, toilet paper, and anything from pastas, rice, or cereal. For example, if you purchased 10 tubes of toothpaste for free to 50 cents a tube by using sales and coupons, then that is 10 tubes that your not going to pay $4 each for a month from now. Multiply that number by the number of tubes your family uses a year, and you can begin to see the potential savings.

The basic goal here is to accumulate a stockpile in amounts so that you never again have to pay full price on items you use everyday. You would only need to purchase the product when it goes on sale, and you have a coupon.
When you run out of toothpaste, you already have it, and don't need to go out and spend the regular price for it. I highly recommend stockpiling, because in the long run, it will save you a lot of money!

Here are a few tips on stockpiling:

Tip #1
You should only stockpile items that you find a great deal on and you use those items on a regular basis. Don't stockpile items that you never use, or something you just use every now and then. Unless, it's free of course. If it's free, you could purchase it, then donate it to someone in need. Example: I found a great deal on cat food awhile back. I purchased it (it was free after coupon) although I don't have a cat. Then, I gave it to my friend, who has a cat. And always remember that items can be donated, given away, or sold at a yard sale too!

Tip #2
Try Other Brands.

I used to only buy, and use certain name brand products. For example: I used to only use Tide laundry detergent. But since I've started stockpiling and bargain shopping, I've learned that if you're willing to try other brands, you'll save a lot of money! I now enjoy trying new products, and so far I have been pleased with the results!

Tip #3
Use your free samples.
If you get free samples in the mail, put them in a convenient place and use them.

Tip #4
Know when to STOP!
For example: Right now, I have 15 packages of deodorant, (which will last us quite awhile) so, instead of buying more deodorant, I will stock up on something else we could use.

Tip #5
Where to put your stockpile? Well, we don't have a lot of storage space at my house. We don't have a basement, garage, or room for a deep freezer. Therefore, It's hard for me to have as big as a Stockpile as I'd like to have. If you have this kind of extra room than I'm jealous! LOL! But, anyhow, this does not stop me from Stockpiling. I stuff my stockpile into closets (that have to be well organized, to maximize space) and I also put it under my bed, and in the kitchen on shelves, and even on the laundry room shelves. Even if you are living in a small space, there are still possibilities to make room for a stockpile.

Tip #6
How to Stockpile if your on a Budget?
Often times I hear people say, well- I'm too broke (money is too tight) for me to spend my money on things that we don't need right now. The answer is to start slow! Every week set up a budget just for stockpiling! If you only have $5 for stockpiling than that's a start. Scan my weekly coupon match-ups and challenge yourself to see how much you can get for $5. Deals vary each week, one week might be slow, and the next week is a jackpot, but if you use coupons, I can guarantee that you'd be surprised what $5 can buy you! Just look for the Free, or less than 50 cents items at the stores and $5 could be the beginning step to a nice stockpile. If this still is not making sense, than think about it this way- Instead of buying a big bag of potato chips the next time that your at the grocery store, instead invest that money on your stockpile!

I hope that this post was helpful for you. How do you stockpile? Do you have any tips, advice, or questions? Please leave a comment and share.

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