Tuesday Tip: Use a Calculator!

Another easy tip this week, but a great one for those just beginning to “coupon.”

ALWAYS USE A CALCULATOR

When you go into the store, get yourself all set up.  Pick up the weekly ad. Lay out your shopping list and the ad in the seat of the cart.  Have your coupons and a pen ready to go.  AND… pull out your calculator (or cell phone).

Every time you put an item in your cart, move your coupon to the “to-hand-over” pile, and put the final price of the item in your calculator.  Keep adding until you get to your budgeted amount.  (Don’t forget some tax leeway.)

For example, my weekly budget is $30. (I’m shopping for me and the Future-Mr. Q these days.) Once I get to about $25, I make sure I’m going to make it to $30 but not over with what I’ve got left to purchase.  If I can, I keep going until I hit about $28 – gives me some room for tax.  If I don’t think I can, this is the time to put back any “wants” and stick with the “needs.”

This is the perfect way to make sure there are no surprises when the cashier tells you how much you owe.  It also assures that you’ll come in at or under budget each week.

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