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What is Extreme Couponing?

What is extreme couponin? I keep hearing all the “hype” in the media associated with Extreme Couponing. I was watching The Marriage Ref and heard reference to “stockpiling” and “couponing” on two separate episodes as well as many times lately on the news.  As a result, I decided to look up the definition of “extreme”.   According to Webster extreme is defined as, 1.  existing in a very high degree, 2.  going to great or exaggerated lengths and 3.  exceeding the ordinary, usual, or expected.

What is Extreme Couponing

After much reflection I have to agree that yes, I am an extreme couponer, though have always called myself a “stockpiler”. Indeed purchasing 40 Lysol products in one week is a recent and prime example of extreme couponing or purchasing 200 bottles of Mentos gum as I did recently is yet another.  You may ask me, why?  I have to answer Why not?  Why would I not purchase these items in bulk quantity when they are free or near free.  This saves my family hundreds of dollars a month translating to thousands of dollars a year!

What is a Stockpile?  A pile or storage location for bulk materials. In this case groceries, personal care or household products.

Why Stockpile?  If you stockpile your groceries by strategically using coupons, you will never pay retail for your groceries. If you stockpile successfully, you will save hundreds every month = thousands a year!

When do I stockpile?   It is a strategic game. The objective is to “match” grocery sale prices to your coupons to take advantage of when your groceries are at rock bottom.   This is when you stockpile.

How do I stockpile? You compare the coupon policies at the stores you have available to you as well as any incentives they offer you to shop there. Finally, “match” your coupons to the sales ads and purchase when you find a deal that is at rock bottom.  You purchase in a quantity to last your family until the item can be purchased again at rock bottom.

In order to successfully stockpile you are going to need to purchase or obtain multiple papers or purchase your coupons/inserts from a clipping service.  You need to stockpile the quantity necessary to last your family until the next cycle. Once you are shopping from your stockpile weekly instead of from the grocery store, this is when you are going to see the savings!

What is Extreme Couponing?

As you can see from my picture, I purchased a lot of Mentos gum.  200 bottles to be exact.  First of all, let me start by saying I did not clear any shelves when I purchased these.  I ordered them directly through my store.  I spent a total of $28.00 out of pocket for this purchase which equates to $.14 per bottle!  Instead of paying between $1.00 – $1.59 a bottle retail you can immediately see the savings from my example of extreme couponing!  I hope this explains to you the benefit of stockpiling or “extreme couponing”.

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  1. I have to say that, for my family, I don’t yet see a need to use a coupon clipping service.

    I have a very healthy stockpile.

    It has probably taken me longer to establish my stockpile. At this point, I am passing on “deals” as we are simply overstocked.

    For some, I think that extreme couponing can be a sign of an actual problem….an addiction of some sort. How many free toothpaste tubes is enough for one family? The thing I see now is the rationalization to purchase extreme amounts of items to donate.

    Just because you “can” get a great deal doesn’t mean you “should”. We don’t have to “do every deal”. It is OK to take a break.

    I am *NOT* criticizing the author of this post….I am making a general observation…..I am sure some would find my personal stockpile of 2L of pop and salsa obscene 🙂

  2. melissa, one question I have about coupon clipping services, how long does it take to receive the coupons you’ve ordered, once I look at the ad, decide what coupons i’d like to order, wait for the mail, and get them organized to get to the store, I’m afraid the week will be over and the deal will be gone or sold out.

    I do review the weekly ad previews, and the coupon insert previews, but our regional sales are always different and there’s no way to know !


  3. YOY:
    I’m not the author, but personally I order off of ebay and it’s been once or twice that i haven’t received them in time but i usually put in the “notes” section as I’m paying that I need them before the end of the week so that they might send out as soon as possible.

  4. Do your local stores double coupons? For this post and previous posts I notice that you get some really awesome deals that I can’t dream of getting in my neck of the woods since NONE of our stores double (you’d think otherwise in a city of 350K)

  5. Karen,

    I appreciate your response. It took me 3 months to build my stockpile and I maintain it weekly/monthly with items that are at rock bottom. By using a clipping service I am able to purchase quantities of coupons to stockpile without having to purchase multiple copies of the Sunday paper. A prime example is with the Mentos.

    I would love to see your stockpile. We have a fan photo album on facebook 🙂


    1. I save even more….I don’t buy papers. A few people are kind enough to save inserts for me that would otherwise go in the recycle bin.

  6. YOY,

    Great question. I use a clipping service that is local to me. I order on Saturday/Sunday and get them Tuesday. 🙂 I suggest ordering as soon as possible to be sure you in on the deal. Of course you can utilize rain checks often too.

  7. Tiffany, I do not order from Ebay. I find them over priced and normally take too long to receive. I order from all the clippers on our site under coupons – coupon clippers and they are all legit. I like to find a clipper that lives “near me” so I can get them quickly 🙂 Hope that helps!

  8. I am not ready yet, but I need to find out where is everyone getting these extra coupons. I need to know because I am scared to take extra papers from the newspaper machine and I didn’t know you can order more than one paper delivered to your house. I have so much to learn.

    1. Michelle

      I don’t know why you would be scared to take extra papers. If you pay for them, they are yours to take….?

      Surely, you don’t mean paying for one paper and taking multiple copies?

    2. You can take as many you want if you pay for them:-) However, I prefer a coupon clipping service myself. It saves me time and money 🙂 We are here to answer any questions you may have.

  9. This is a great post. I don’t stockpile but I’m using sites like yours to find the best deals out there. This post should definitely be linked from one of your navigation menus above or on your homepage, it explains a lot of what I was looking for when I started bargain hunting. Thanks!

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