Groceries on a Budget
Michelle and Douglas desperately need Coupon Mom's help. Can she cut their outrageous weekly bill
Michelle: So, Doug and I have been married for 14 years and we have three amazing children. And in those 14 years, I probably not want to set foot in a grocery store. I didn’t have to. I worked full time and dagger in the house. I did the dishes and the cleaning and the homework. He was mister mom.
Douglas: I also did all the grocery shopping. I would spend about $125.00 a week with my coupons, follow local sales and everything run smoothly but about two years ago, we opened our own business and I no longer have the bandwidth to do the shopping and to take care of the household.
Michelle: So now, the roles are reversed. I’m still working a full time job but then Doug is working 70 hours a week and I’m having to do the cooking, the cleaning, the shopping and it is disastrous.
Douglas: Michelle did not see the importance in keeping coupons or following sales and our grocery bill went up and it was frustrating.
Michelle: Frankly, it takes too long so when I go grocery shopping, I go without a list and I go without a plan and I want to spend about $250.00 a week and it’s always the basis for an argument. So, to save our marriage, I need the coupon by myself.
Stephanie Nelson: He is Mr. Mom and her spending is way out of control. I need to straighten Michelle out. I think she needs a day of coupon while in booth camp.
Michelle: Hi, come on in and meet my husband.
Stephanie Nelson: All right.
Michelle: Stephanie, this is my husband Doug.
Stephanie Nelson: Nice to meet you.
Douglas: Nice to meet you.
Michelle: So, I understand you’re the real proshopper here.
Douglas: I think I do all right.
Stephanie Nelson: You do all right. You’re like the coupon dad.
Douglas: As well yeah, I guess I could be the coupon dad.
Stephanie Nelson: All right so let’s start out. I’ve seen your receipts and the good news, almost everything you’re buying has a coupon.
Douglas: I think when Michelle heard what a coupon mom had to say she realized she’d heard it before from me and if she’s finally ready to pay attention, I’m happy to have someone else tell her.
Stephanie Nelson: When I first met Douglas, I could tell he was really smart but I think you got to do a little bit better at grocery shopping than he was. He didn’t know all the tricks. And maybe you could even get to be able the better shopper.
Michelle: I would love nothing more than to be able to rub it in space.
Douglas: I could live with that.
Stephanie Nelson: Good, let’s get started.
Michelle: Are you ready to shop?
Stephanie Nelson: Yes. Wait a minute my first tip I always carry this wipes in my bag because I like to clean the handle of the cart, disinfect it especially during cold or flu season. All right, let’s go save.
Stephanie Nelson: All right Michelle, we’re going to do strategic shopping 101, Stacking Savings Program. So, if you want to look at a story I just see what’s on sale and this is a really fun way to shop because they have a special promotion buy 10 of these items and you will automatically get $5.00 up if you register.
Stephanie Nelson: You can get more than 10. You can get one, 30, 40. The second thing is we wan to see which you have coupons for. And on top of that, there are also electronic coupons, we just select all of the store website and it automatically gets put on your store discount card.
Michelle: And I’ll just show it at the register?
Stephanie Nelson: When you use your card, it comes off your bill. So today, we’re combining all of this so I can show you how much you can save.
Michelle: I’m ready.
Stephanie Nelson: All right let’s go. I don’t mean to be nosy but I did review your grocery receipt and 22% of your grocery spending was actually on snacks.
Michelle: Snacks is like the danger zone for me with the kids, they put everything in, they know what they like.
Stephanie Nelson: I’m going to show you how you can get good snacks for very little coupons and sales. But you need to go with the deals. Saving money is not about compromising the quality. They’re going to love what I have on the list.
I wanted to teach Michelle just have a stick to a list and stop the ample shopping. I mean off the top, she’d saved 25% just by doing that.
I’m looking for the red tags because the red tags are items that are in this promotion. So, it’s show if it’s a red tag. And I have a coupon for this item and it’s usually $2.99.00 on sale for a $1.49. But after the promotion, they’re only 99 cents a box and I have a coupon that makes some 24.
Michelle: Stop for the whole box?
Stephanie Nelson: Yeah, they don’t sell half boxes. So, you can actually get eight boxes four coupons. With a family of your size, you should get more than one copy of the Sunday paper so that you can have multiple coupons.
Michelle: I can’t wait to tell Doug that I only spent 24 cents on a box of crackers.
Stephanie Nelson: The unit cost there is like less than a candy or cracker if you will like that.
Michelle: Look, I love this tag. It has the unit price on it.
Stephanie Nelson: Okay Michele, they all have the unit price on it—this one is a great deal it’s a $1.35 but after all the savings it’s 12 cents per can. So, here’s another great deal. We were down to 39 cents but after the coupon, it’s 55 cents. You’re actually getting the item free and making a profit of 15 cents per item.
Michelle: Are they going to pay me 16 cents to take the item?
Stephanie Nelson: Well, they will not pay you but that’s average out new bill.
Michelle: They will start paying me to take that out of the store.
Stephanie Nelson: Welcome to my world but I like easy dinners.
Michelle: These box of potatoes are actually really good.
Stephanie Nelson: The price is a $1.69, down to 99 cents but there’s a coupon that makes it $0.19 a box, you can get four. Plus there’s also an electronic coupon so then it’s up to you, $0.9 a box.
Michelle: Wow! But look so they positioned this right next to the store brand with the 10%. I think $0.9 is better than a $1.00. But see I am a total sucker for—but now I know better.
Stephanie Nelson: Yeah you know better. We’ll say what the register says okay that’s the fun part. The newest type of brush your coupon is called an electronic coupon. These are so easy to use. You just go to the site select the offers you like and they’re loaded right on your store discount part and when you buy the item the value of the coupon comes off automatically. You don’t have to print or cut out a thing.
All right Michelle, this is the fun part, let’s hope so. If we got out of here today, you would save for a $125.00 or less that will be half of what I spend now but you’ll be happiest if you beat that.
Stephanie Nelson: So, what are you’re going to take to beat Doug?
Michelle: Well, he seems to think he can do it for a $100.00
Stephanie Nelson: All right so just curious what do you think this is going to cost.
Michelle: It’s already over a hundred dollars.
Stephanie Nelson: 153, 156.
Michelle: There’s a lot of stuff.
Stephanie Nelson: See a $161.00.
Michelle: Doug would kill me if I spent a $161.00.
Stephanie Nelson: Well, let’s see. So, we have some electronic coupons that we’re using today.
Michelle: That you’ve downloaded from their website, right?
Stephanie Nelson: Easy, for all this, down to $79.06.
Michelle: Oh my gosh, you haven’t even given your paper coupon yet have you?
Stephanie Nelson: Done the coupons yet, let’s see what else what those will do for us.
Michelle: Oh my gosh. So, you’ve cut it in half by just using your store shopper cards right.
Stephanie Nelson: Worth 27, 22, we started at a $161.00, 11 maybe, $10.93.
Stephanie Nelson: $10.93 for all of that food.
Michelle: I can’t wait to tell Doug how much I beat him buy. It doesn’t matter what Doug’s reaction is because I beat him. I can’t believe it was only $10.00, that blows my mind.
Hey it’s Michelle, thanks coupon mom for all of your help in saving money in time at the grocery store. I think I’m doing a great job and I think even Doug is impressed with the amount of money I’m saving.
Douglas: I’m impressed. Thanks a lot coupon mom. She’s doing great.
Michelle: I’m just clipping my coupon bill and I’m beating Doug. I’m even printing out my coupons and taking them to the store. And now, I am the championship shopper in my house. Thanks so much.
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