By the way…does anyone know where I can watch TLC’s Extreme Couponing premier online? I still haven’t seen it!
For WUC Wednesday this week, I contacted Nathan Engels and asked him a few questions about his shopping trip that was featured on TLC’s Extreme Couponing which aired on December 29, 2010.
Nathan Engels is the founder and owner of WeUseCoupons.com, which is an online community for couponers to maximize their savings and share their deal finds. On his trip with TLC’s Extreme Couponing (you can read my post about it HERE), Nathan purchased $5,743 worth of groceries for a mere $241, or a 95% savings! So he definitely knows what he’s doing!
Q: What is the difference between stockpiling and hoarding?
A: “Absolutely! Stockpiling is smart strategic shopping. If something is free today and you will use it tomorrow, why not buy it today? Who in their right mind would waste their hard earned money by waiting! Hoarding is defined this way: acquiring and failing to throw out a large number of items that would appear to have little or no value to others (eg, papers, notes, flyers, newspapers, clothes); severe cluttering of the person’s home so that it is no longer able to function as a viable living space; significant distress or impairment of work or social life. Personally, I value free toilet paper. My home isn’t cluttered and I have an active social and work life! Hoarding is a real disorder, but strategic shopping is not! It’s called spending your time and money wisely.”
Q: How much money was spent on the coupons you used on your Extreme Couponing shopping trip?
A: “$70 to $75 for my coupons.”
Q: Do you stockpile perishable items? How do you use them before they expire?
A: “I do stockpile perishables, I just can’t stockpile to a huge extent. For example, I only buy 3 to 4 jars of mayo when it’s on sale (with a coupon) because it goes bad quickly. Other things like cereal have a great long shelf life and are easier to stockpile. If anything is close to expiring, we just give it away.”
Q: How many coupons did you use on the Extreme Couponing shopping trip? Do most stores really accept that many coupons?
A: “I used over 1,700 coupons, and, no, most stores probably won’t accept that many coupons all at once. This trip was planned ahead with the store.”
Q: What are all of your coupon sources (online, dumpster diving, inserts….)?
A: “Yes, yes, and yes! I get coupons from everywhere!”
Q: How do you organize your coupons?
A: “I use a combo method–the binder, some Ziploc bags, and then some accordion folders. Organization is so important!”
Q: How much time do you spend per day/week planning your shopping trips?
A: “I spend anywhere from 5 to 10 hours couponing a week. I have a great system and know what I’m doing! From planning to clipping to shopping, if you have a system it goes quick!”
Hey, are you an extreme couponer? Can you save hundreds or thousands of dollars in one shopping trip? Do you have an impressive stockpile that you acquired through your savvy couponing skills? How would you like to participate in a future episode of TLC’s Extreme Couponing? If you are interested, TLC is casting now! Email TLC here: extremecouponingcasting[at]gmail[dot]com Oh, and be sure to let them know that TJ of MeasuringFlower.com sent you!