What you need & how to set it up.
The coupon binder was the first coupon organization method I used. I have since evolved to filing my newspaper inserts whole. However I keep my binder full of stray coupons I have, such as blinkies, tear pad, printable and mailed coupons.
The binder is probably the most popular way to organize your coupons. It’s super easy efficient and doesn’t have to be super expensive.
What makes the binder method so darn efficient? You can easily organize your coupons in a way that will allow you to organize, easily see and carry to the store with you.
You will never be caught without your coupons when you find an unadvertised sale or clearance.
Remember, the coupon binder is excellent; however it may not be for you. There’s several other ways to organize and you don’t have to be loyal to just one.
No matter how pretty your binder is, if it doesn’t work for you, then it won’t be efficient. Keep functionality in mind and don’t be so concerned with how fashionable it is…..lol! Don’t feel like you have to spend tons of cash to make it work. I started out pretty basic.
What you need:
- Baseball/Currency/Photo Holders
You can use pretty much any binder you have. If you have some old ones from school, by all means feel free to use those to get started.
If you can afford to spend a few bucks, the I suggest buying something that will last. I cannot tell you how many times I dropped my binder before realizing that buying a zip-up binder would be a great investment. Generally, zip-up binders cost around $10-$15. Keep your eyes out for back to school clearances.
I suggest getting at least a 2” binder. Some people need larger, depending on how many coupons they have. I have found that a 2” works well for me.
The most common (and frustrating) are baseball card holders. You can find these in the baseball card section at target, or online. I say these are frustrating because not all coupons fit well in them. I find that most coupons will need to be folded and getting them to slide in and out can be slightly annoying. They have 9 pockets, so they hold quite a few coupons.
Another option is currency holders. I have never found these in the store; however you can find these online. These are my favorite because they hold internet printables amazingly well. They only have 3 pockets though.
Photo holders also work really well. They generally have 4 pockets. You can find different sizes online.
I recommend having a combination of different sizes to accommodate all of your coupons.
Another thing you may need are single page holders (page protectors) to hold flyers and coupon policies.TIP: You can put 2 coupons back to back in one pocket to hold double.
I highly recommend buying plastic divider tabs. You’ll be flipping through your binder more often than you can imagine and you want it to be durable. I like the kind that you can label yourself instead of the “pre-numbered” kind.
If you don’t want to invest in dividers, you can always use post-its if you have them.
My top picks for everything you need to get started
How to organize your binder
This is the most entertaining part, however it can become the most frustrating if you let it.
What’s best? Alphabetically, by category or by date?
That’s simple, whatever works best for you. You may begin one way and find that abother way works better, you will have to be flexible.
Personally, I divide by category. I keep a section in the front for all of my store coupons and FREE coupons (so that I don’t forget about them).
I also have a zipped pocket in the front where I keep rain checks, scissors, a calculator and a few pens.
If you choose to divide by category, you’ll have to decide how specific you want to be. For instance do you want a general Health & Beauty section, or do you prefer several more specific categories like shampoo, soap, skin care, etc.
Below is my list of categories, you can use it, or change it up to suit your needs.
- Oral Care
- Personal Care
- Feminine Hygiene
- First Aid
Remember to be flexible and find what works for you. It’s your binder and you can change categories, or move things around as needed. If you ever feel over whelmed and it feels like a chore, take a step back and see how you can simplify the system to work better for you. Remember this isn’t the only way to organize coupons – if it doesn’t work for you try something new.
I hope this is helpful! Have fun getting started!
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