Couponing Secrets: Clip Artists Know When To Buy a Lot of Something is Key to ‘Making Money’

By Janet Patton
Lexington Herald-Leader.

Ever hear this piece of investment advice, “You’ve got to spend money to make money“?

It’s usually said by someone trying to sell you something.

I have, and it goes against my every tight-fisted instinct. How can I be sure that I will make back the initial outlay?

This is exactly how you need to evaluate one common household money-saving strategy: couponing.

I’m really not talking about the “clip what comes in my Sunday paper” kind of couponing. That’s the basic idea but it’s too small a scale to make much difference in your annual household spending. I’m talking about strategic shopping, which can involve couponing on an industrial scale.

Think of shopping as if your household goods are commodities, and you will buy at the bottom of the price cycle, meaning when it’s cheapest, and sit on your hands when the price just isn’t good enough.

This can reduce long-term costs if implemented properly. Instead of getting a great deal on 1 gallon of detergent, multiply it by 10.

Now you’ve got that same great price on a year’s worth of detergent.

But to make this work you need two things:

1. A good understanding of the market, so you know when prices are right.

2. The ability to take advantage of that price with flexibility in your budget.

That’s where spending money to make money applies. If you can afford to buy a lot of something, you might save in the long run. But you might have to sink capital in up front.

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