Season of Savings: How to Coupon 

There seems to be a popular trend among frequent shoppers, It’s calling couponing and there are all different spectrums. You have the person who will occasionally cut one out of a coupon all the way to your extreme couponers, the one you’ll see on reality TV, but for the average person to save money, you need to be in between.”Stock and Save” Couponing in Eastern Maine Blogger, Hail Keezer said “I started couponing after I saw a segment, just like this one, on channel 5 and I went to their Facebook page, liked it, and ended up taking one of their couponing classes and I’ve been saving ever since.”Haily is a wife, mother of two, and a nurse. Like most parents, she has a lot on her plate, except she pays less for it. “I’m blessed to know how to do this. I’m blessed to be able to coupon, you do have to have a little bit of money to get started,” said Keezer.This mom used to shop like the rest of us, using a coupon here and there, looking through clearance when you could ,but with a family to support and student loan payments, she had to find a way to cut corners. She said “It has helped tremendously. I had no idea that I was spending so much and I had no idea I could save so much.”Haily usually saves between 50 to 80% on any given trip, but this isn’t something that just happens overnight. “So, Monday, I get the coupons, put them into the binder, and then by Tuesday, usually, I have the matchups on the blog. So, I’ll go and sit down with the binder and look over the matchups at Shaw’s and I’ll make my plan for the week. I usually don’t shop until Wednesday or Thursday,” the blogger said. You may not always use a “shopping list,” but more of a “coupon list.” You shop now to stock up on things, so you won’t have to pay full price when you need them in the future. Keezer said “I do have a list that I stick to. I don’t buy things at Shaw’s that aren’t on sale and I also shop their clearance section. So, I have all my coupons, I do stick to my list, but I might find something in clearance I can get for cheap or free and I stock up then.”Haily says one of the most important things to remember is to always be looking for a sale. You don’t need to start your holiday shopping a week before, if you are actively looking all year, that’s where you’ll find your savings. “Stock up now. Veggies are on sale, get them now, put them in the freezer so you don’t have to pay that full price a few days before the holidays. When everyone else is out in the grocery store, you can be home, relaxed, and baking.”How about doubling coupons? This is where certain stores will double the value of the coupon. If it was originally 50 cents off, now it’s a dollar off. You can also combine manufacturer or brand coupons with store specific ones. “There’s a lot of math involved, I may not have been great at math before, but I’m excellent now,” the mother of two joked.Don’t throw out those expired coupons. You can send those overseas to military families. They are good for up to six months after the expiration date. Keezer said “I have no problem sharing, giving, and paying it forward to people who need it.”But remember, there are times when you just can’t find the sale. “You always have to pay full price for milk,” said the blogger.For more information or to take a coupon class you can contact Haily at her email [email protected] or follow along with her blog at