Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Setting the Table for Savings: Step #7

Stockpiling



I have been so excited to get to this step! This and freezer cooking (which is the next, and last step in the series) are by far my favorite to talk about. You see, you can save money by clipping coupons and buying what is on sale each week; however, you won't see HUGE savings until you begin to stockpile. It is great if Ragu is on sale and you buy one for dinner this week, but that only helps you this week. The basic idea of stockpiling is to buy as much as you can when that item is at it's rock-bottom price! Then you have enough to cover your family until it goes on sale again.

Since I have been doing this for a while I have learned what a good deal is on items that I regularly purchase. When they are at their rock-bottom price I know it is time to stock up. This is where the price book or knowing ALDI's prices comes in handy. ( I talked about this in the "Got coupons, now what" post.) As a rule of thumb, I may buy a few if something is 30-50% off. I really start stocking up when it is more than 50% off! I know when chicken breasts hit 1.77/lb. that it is time to buy A LOT!!!! I won't pay more than $1 for laundry detergent (and I buy name brands), .50 a bag of frozen veggies, .30 for pasta sauce, .50 a box of cereal...and on and on the list goes!

If you have been looking at my Packing the Pantry posts, you have probably noticed that I shop differently than most. My cart may be filled with 6 boxes of cereal, 8 jars of spaghetti sauce, 15 pounds of chicken, 20 cans of tomatoes... That is because most of what I buy goes down to my stockpile... It will take you a little time to start stocking up, but little by little, you will see it grow. Pretty soon you will be able to make many meals just from what you have on hand. Once I make out my meal plan for the week there is usually one 2-3 things that I need to buy to complete that meal, and they are usually perishables.

Below is a photo of some of my stockpile. As you can see, there is a lot of each item there! I try to keep it all organized and keep similar things in the same area. All the canned goods go on the same shelf, all the breakfast items go on the same shelf, and so on... It does take room to stockpile! If you don't have a lot of space you can still stockpile, but you are going to have to get creative on places to put your stuff. I keep my body stuff (shampoo, razors, shaving gel, face wash...) in the upstairs linen closet, everything else goes in the basement. The food goes on the shelving units and the laundry stuff goes by the washer and dryer.



Another big thing is to keep track of what food you have and their expiration dates. I keep a sharpie downstairs and I put the expiration date on each item when I put it away. It is no longer a good deal if it expires and has to be thrown away! Periodically I go down to look and see if something needs to be used. Oh, and let me tell you, someone better not go down and take something that isn't next in line to be used. That is not cool, and is not tolerated in this house!! Ha Ha!! I take my stockpile pretty seriously!


I really believe that when you go from just couponing to stockpiling you will really start saving!!! Like I mentioned before I take out $40 a week and with that I buy what I need for the week and also stock my stockpile! Give it some time and I think you will be surprised at what a difference it makes. I will be back soon with my last post in the series, freezer cooking!

7 comments:

Misty said...

WOW... Ok, I REALLY would like to see your "stock pile" in person... haha. :) This is where I am currently at in my "couponing"... Up until recently, I would only buy a few of an item (cereal and laundry detergent being exceptions~ because we go through SO much), but I have always had this mentality of "I don't have the room to stockpile".

Recently, I have begun stockpiling, more can goods (soups and veggies) and would like to expand into other things...

I know we have talked about this before, but tonight in this post, I think it has begun to finally "click"... hahaha. The 2 to 4 papers you buy, allow you to purchase MORE since you have MORE coupons? (Lightbulb~ I admit, I was getting by trying to skimp on one paper).

THEN, out of your $40 a week, you pretty much, go through the store and get your "gotta haves" and then what is left you buy to stockpile?

I have been waiting for this section and the freezing meals... You know me!!! :) So, be ready for questions... :)

Cheryl said...

I'm going to get a sharpie and start MARKING!!!

This is where I've not done well!!! You are right that it is not a deal if you let it expire!!!

Hugs,
Cherie

Heather said...

Wow, I always buy as many as I have coupons for and will print extras if they are printable, but I do not have that kind of a stockpile. That is amazing. Of course, I have not been real diligent for several years when the kids were so young, so I am just now the past year getting back into serious "couponing". My piles are growing. Your right it does take time and the more people you have to feed the longer it takes. Especially like Misty said about cereal. WE go through ALOT of cereal. I definetly buy multiple papers and print coupons.

One thing I have realized lately is to save ALL coupons. There have been several money makers on things that I wouldnt normally purchase so I didnt keep the coupon (to save space in my binder) but then realized how it could have helped me purchase the things I needed.

Katie said...

Misty,

You will have to come over to see it in person. Haha!!! Really though, you will see huge savings once you build it up! I take my $40 and buy the few things I need for the week and I spend the rest on stockpiling. If you look at my last grocery post I bought a lot, but some weeks I don't stockpile anything. On average I spend about $25-30 a week and then I save the rest for times when the deals are great.

Katie said...

Cherie,

You should start to mark things! It really does help. I know who has your name, I will tell them to get you a bunch of sharpies for Christmas!

Just make sure Chuck doesn't take the "new" oreo cakesters instead of the "old" ones like Daniel did! You just have to teach everyone the rules for the stockpile! Ha ha!!!

Miss you!! See you in a few weeks!

Katie said...

Heather you are so right! Save all those coupons, even the just for men's and preparation H! They may just be a money maker at CVS next week!

Misty said...

I absolutely LOVE the sharpie idea!!! I am definitely going to do that as I get my stockpile together...

Whoever thought couponing and grocery shopping could be fun?!?

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