Can you really make money off of extreme couponing?

Can you really make money off of extreme couponing?

While spending time with my family for the 4th of July holiday they made fun of me because I like to coupon. They teased that I must have to much time on my hands to be able to collect coupons, browse circulars, and find the best store. (Jokes on them I just have a good system.) I laughed back at them and said at least I wasn’t an extreme couponer. I then reminded them that there are some individuals who actually make money couponing. Then I thought to myself how much time would it take to do this money making extreme couponing and is it worth it? So when all of the family visits were done and over with and the little one and the hubby were sleeping in the next day I decided to give it a try.

First thought that came out of my experience was that it’s hard! The below picture shows what I got from two shopping trips. The Clear care contact solution, Head & Shoulders, Pantene, and Gillette deodorant came from Rite Aid and the Nabisco Go Paks came from Walmart. Here is how I did it.

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Step 1: I started off with a list of items I actually needed to purchase in the near future. That was the Clear care contact solution, Head & Shoulders and Gillette for my husband. I then thought of items I could use but didn’t necessarily need right now which was the Pantene and the Go Paks.

Step 2: I went to the Krazy Coupon Lady’s website and searched their store section for deals at Rite Aid and Walmart. If you are a couponer of any type I highly recommend checking out thekrazycouponlady.com and also liking their page on facebook. You will get up to date information of some of the best deals around. After going to their site I saw that at Walmart the Go Paks were priced at a dollar and if you used two buy 2 get 1 free coupons, two 0.75 cents off coupons, and then submitted five checkout 51 rebates for $2.50 for purchasing two Go Paks you could make $7.00 on the transaction. Then I went over to the Rite Aid page and saw that they were having a special spend $30 on certain items you would get a $10 visa rebate card in the mail. It just so happened that the Head & Shoulders and Gillette deodorant were on the list of items so I set out to complete this special. The kicker for this one was seeing if I could make money off of the transaction.

Step 3: Clip coupons. For the Walmart trip I could not find the two 0.75 off coupons so I went to coupons.com and smartsource.com to clip the buy 2 get 1 free coupons. I decided to use three of those instead. For Rite Aid I had a harder time finding the coupons. I went to the same sources as above for my coupons and I found a $5.00 off coupon for the Clear care contact solution, a $5.00 off coupon for two Head & Shoulders, a $5.00 coupon for the purchase of three Pantene products, and a $1.00 coupon for one Gillette deodorant.

Step 4: Calculate out all of my costs before going to the store. I really encourage this step. I really hate it when I think I have everything squared away in my head and then when I get to the store stuff changes and the numbers are off. What I hate even more over paying for things. So this step is crucial. I calculated that for the Go Paks I was going to spend $7.00 out of pocket, but receive $12.50 from the Checkout 51 app so over all I would be making $5.50 on the Walmart transaction. Rite Aid was a little bit trickier. For Rite Aid I had to try and track down the price of each item. I calculated that the sale for the Clear care contact solution and with using my coupon that item should be free, for the Head & Shoulders they were on sale 2/$10 so with my $5 off coupon I would pay $5, for the Pantene products they were on sale 3/$12 so with my coupon I would pay $7 then with two $1 check out 51 rebates I would pay over all $5 for the Pantene, and for the deodorant they were b1g1 at %50 off so I should have been paying $4.79 for one and $2.89 for the other one. The special for the spend $30 get $10 deal is calculated before coupons so I was good on that front. I then also had $5.00 worth of Plenti points and another coupon for $6.00 of with a $30 purchase which is also calculated before coupons. All together I calculated that before taxes I should be paying subtotal $8.68, and with the $10 visa rebate card and check out 51 rebates I would be making some where around $3.32. (Whew! This step was the longest. Haha)

Step 5: Go shopping! The shopping part at Rite Aid was easy. They had everything I wanted and they looked to be on sale like I had seen them online. I got to the check out scanned my Plenti card, and handed over all of my coupons. For some reason my subtotal came to $21.67.  Yikes! I stepped aside and looked over the receipt and it just didn’t look right so I asked for a manager so they could go over the receipt with me. They agreed something wasn’t right. Turns out the Clear care contact solution at my Rite Aid was actually going to come out as costing $2.00. Which should have bumped up my subtotal to $10.68 which is still a lot less then $21.67. The very nice manager at Rite Aid gave me a refund so that my subtotal came to $10.68 like it should have after the addition of the price change for the Clear care contact solution. Loaded up in the car and claim my two $1.00 Pantene rebates on checkout 51. After my visa rebate card comes in I will have made $1.32 off of my Rite Aid trip. Walmart was so much easier. Went in and checked out with 10 Go Paks, handed over my three coupons, paid $7 out of pocket, loaded up in the car and claimed my five $2.50 checkout 51 rebates. Total made on the Walmart trip $5.50.

Take a ways: Extreme couponing is hard, can be time consuming, and doesn’t bring in a lot of money, but it can be fun and you get a rush when you save. Make sure you double and triple check prices in the circular and in store. Will I do it again? Yes, but only when I am shopping by my self. 🙂

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