LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Statistics show six out of 10 items shoppers pick up in the store are unplanned purchases but one expert, the Coupon Mom, shows us that planning can make all the difference in your grocery bill.
Quick trips to the store can be costly and studies show shoppers usually spend 54 percent more than they planned. That's exactly what this segment with the Coupon Mom focuses on - making your shopping plan.
Stephanie Nelson, the Coupon Mom, lives in Georgia but her theories apply to stores she doesn't even shop in. Before you know it, you can have a large grocery bill, but the Coupon Mom says that you don't have to break the bank if you learn how to use store discount programs. "I am lucky they have close out prices on pasta. I have a coupon for it. I would actually get this one for free," says Nelson as she works her magic at the grocery store.
To maximize savings, this mom never leaves home without clipping coupons from the store's circular and checking her website for discounts. "I got this coupon weeks ago when this item was at full price. The key to using coupons is to wait until the item goes on sale before you use the coupon. So in this case, this item is on sale. Its sale price is $2.69. I have a coupon for $1.50. I'll pay $1.19 for the family size box. That's a good deal," says Nelson.
But with so many brands, shopping can be overwhelming but if you shop smart you too can find deals up and down the aisles. NewsChannel 11 took Nelson's tips to United Stores to see what we could find. In the circular, Premium Saltine Crackers are advertised as 2 for $3 -- which sounds like a good deal, but it gets better because online there's a manufacturer's coupon for $1 -- a coupon for each box and you have yourself 2 boxes for $1.
Steaks, chicken or fish on your menu? The best time to shop for meat is in the morning - that's when the meat nearing the sell date is marked down 40 percent. Those savings can really add up. There's a science to what Nelson does. "I only want to buy one I'll do the math so instead of paying $5.63, I'll pay $2.61 minus $1.50. I'll pay $1.30 for this big bottle of lotion instead of $5.63 that's a good price and less expensive than the store brand," says Nelson.
It's time to check out. This is pure proof she knows how to save. As the numbers roll back Nelson is able to knock $76 off her $98 grocery bill - a savings of nearly 82 percent. Nelson walked away from the store having spent $17.76.
It's not just groceries there are coupons available for everything from Advil to toilet paper and on the Coupon Mom's website there are coupons for Wal-Mart, Target, Walgreens and CVS stores. The Coupon Mom website is free and only takes a few minutes to set up. Click here to check it out.
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Who is the Coupon Mom?
Ever gone grocery shopping with every intention of only picking up a few items and you spend far more than you planned? It happens all the time, but it doesn't have to always be that way.