Coupon Binder Organization Tips: Hybrid Method

Coupon Organization Tips

So if you have been getting some good deals in the stores lately you probably have been using coupons. So what do you do once you have all those coupons?

There are two major ways to organize your coupons: the binder method and the file method. This is my hybrid method of the two. The Good Deal Mama way, if you will 😉

File Method

Let me start off my saying that I used to organize them by date, put them into a file folder and then just file them in a file box. I would cut as needed. It was super simple and time efficient. The only downside to this method was if i am in the store and see an unadvertised or clearance sale, I didn’t have all my coupons will me.

Binder Method

I also know I do not have the patience or time to cut every single coupon out of my newspaper inserts. And if you have been “couponing” for some time you know you should never throw away any coupons because a coupon you think you would never use could get you “overage” on items you need! So having all of your coupons in a binder cut and ready to go is definitely the best way to make sure you have coupons on hand at all times, but it is very time consuming.

So what’s a Good Deal Mama to do?!

The Hybrid Method

It is a way of organizing your coupons into two groups: cut coupons you know you will use and whole inserts for the rest :)
So this is my personal Coupon Binder, I got it on clearance recently at Walmart for just $5.  I believe it is made for scrapbooking but always be on the look out in the clearance or sale sections for items you can use for other things!

I then put baseball card holders in the front with plastic tab dividers in between. The plastic tabs have different categories on them. Produce, Cereal, Snacks, Frozen, etc.

Each “slot” of the baseball card holder holds coupons I know my family will use, or really HOT coupons that I know will get me FREE items or overage. So each week I just have to cut out a limited number of coupons, and then sort those and put them in the necessary slot.  So not as time consuming as cutting every coupon out.

Behind the baseball card holders I placed page protector sheets, separated by plastic tab dividers by month and then post it tabs by date. I just place each weeks full newspaper coupon insert inside. About 5 of each fit and I just placed a paperclip on top so they don’t “fall out”

Keeping whole insets inside my coupon binder allows me access to every coupon I have in my collection, without having to cut them all. Now you may be wondering, if I am shopping and find a sale, how would I know if I have a coupon to match?!

I just head right over each week to Sunday Coupon Preview, and print out each weeks “preview“, it’s in alphabetical order and includes expiration dates! So I also highlight each week what is the longest expiration date is, that way at a glance I can see if I should keep the coupons, or if its time to donate them to the troops!

I also place coupons I print or coupons I get from home mailers or magazines into the page protectors, so they are readily available as well. If its a coupon I know we will use right away I can always file into the baseball card holders.

I also put store coupon policies in the back inside a page protector as well, so they are always handy!

So what do you think? Which way do you use? Do you like this or is your way better? :)

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate link which continue to keep this site free. See my disclosure policy here

Comments

  1. OMG. This is awesome. I wish I was that organized. I use a babywipes box with index cards for dividers. It works ok, but your way seems much better!

  2. Heather H says:

    I also use a binder with see through baseball card holders, I love it because I can see all my coupons and they are in order.

  3. Kristy Lawson says:

    I do the binder way also, I really like how you dont cut them all out because that is what is the hardest part for me and then I fall behind in cutting them out and end up with coupons all over my house and my little girl loves to tear them all up :(

  4. Christine G. says:

    I really like that binder.

  5. Thanks for the idea of using the Sunday Coupon Preview lists! It makes couponing so much easier! All I do now is copy the lists into a MS Word file and use the Find button to search for the coupons…so easy! Love your site!

  6. I do just about the same thing. :) Great minds think alike. LOL. I print the preview too because it is so much easier to see what each insert has in it without having to flip each page.

  7. Great tips!

  8. RuthAnn Alston says:

    your method is alot like mine in that I also use a combo biner/folder method and only cut out the cpns I know I will use for the binder, putting the whole inserts in another section of my binder.However,I have a question about using the Sunday Cpn Review as a way to help you know what cpns you have in the insert section. I was having trouble using this because my inserts never had the same cpns that they have listed in the Sunday Cpn Review. I would always have either a different amount or wouldn’t have the cpn they had listed at all. If it was just one or two differences, I could “deal” but there are usually A LOT of difference in my inserts and what the Review says. I have yet to find one that matches up closely with what I actually get in my inserts. Do you have this problem? If so, what do you do about it?

    • If you go to southernsavers.com you can click on which paper you get. People from that area send in the differences for their areas so there is no confusion with the preview. Of course she only does areas in the south so if you are not from the south this may not work for you.

  9. Thanks for the ideas! I just started couponing in April and I have a binder and I was clipping each week- which worked for alittle while but once July was here forget it! I have used manila folders for each week and carry that with my binder in a bag! I always seem to be hunting for a coupon then can’t find it and miss a deal….Anyways I needed a good hybrid method – so thank you again:)

  10. cool n organized
    I think u can use them as giveaway..:-)
    or start a side business selling these binders

  11. Amazing! I have a coupon binder with the baseball card holder for each coupon, but it does take forever to cut out and organize every coupon. I’m definitely going to try your organizing method… brilliant!!

  12. Heather W. says:

    I have this same binder. I use it for pictures though…Very nice!!!

  13. I love the idea of printing out the sunday coupon preview. I normaly cut what I know I will use and file away the rest and wait for sales. My files sometimes get crazy and unorganized because I’m always go rummaging through the files looking for a particular coupon. I will use this hybrid idea, thanks!

  14. I LOVE this. I work for walmart 40 hours a week and still have a part-time job doing the books for a small company. plus a mom of a 15, 7 and 2 year old. I’ve been doing the hybrid method now for 2 months and I love it. I still buy six newpapers everyweek but dilligently go threw the weekly ads n study instead of clipping. LOVING THIS METHOD!

  15. I am in North Port Fl and I have the same problem with the coupon preview, my inserts not only do not match the list, but many times I don’t have the same coupons listed in the matchups. The Target insert that came out a few weeks back…didn’t even get it in my area.

  16. Great idea to print out the preview list. I really like your idea to only cut what you know you’ll use.

  17. I bought dollar bill holders on amAzon instead of baseball card holders. They are the perfect size for coupons with no folding.

  18. I try and clip as many as I cab, but I do tend to fall behind, so last month decided that I would no longer clip the P&G mailer. They all expire the same day. So as long as I keep the handy, I can clip when I plan my trip or while at the store.

  19. Great idea! I have been looking for a method to keep my coupons organized, I think this might work for me. Also thank you for the tip on what to do with expired coupons. I didn’t know I could send them to our troops families. I will be doing that from now on instead of recycling them. Thank You for all your helpfull advise.

  20. I really enjoy couponing I have doing it for a long time. I love new ideas. Can someone pleae tell me where I can send my expred coupons for our troops and families as I always throw them away. I would really like to help them out as they are heling us too. Thanks for the great ideas.

  21. This wouldn’t work for me because our area of NW Montana does not get the inserts that are available in more populated areas of the country.

    But I do have an outlet for shipping expired coupons to the troops.

  22. NewOrleansHoney says:

    I DON’T HAVE A WEBSITE. I JUST CAME ACROSS YOUR SITE THRU ONE MOOMMY SAVING MONEY SITE. I WISH I COULD USE COUPONS AS THEY SHOW ON TLC EXTREME COUPONING AND AS YA’LL TALK ABOUT.HOWEVER, NO STORE AROUND HERE EVEN DOUBLES MUCH LESS GIVES YOU OVERAGES.OUR STORES DON’T EVEN HAVE STORE DISCOUNT CARDS (WINNDIXIE HAS A CARD YOU CAN CATCH SALES BUT NO $ BACK) AND WHERE CAN YOU FIND LOTS OF COUPONS LIKE FOR 100 OF SAME ITEM? EVERY TIME I TRY A COUPON SITE IT ASKS LOTS OF ?S AND ONLY WANTS YOU TO BUY OTHER PRODUCTS NOT GIVE ME COUPONS.INFO WILL BE MUCH APPRECIATED.THANKS, HONEY

  23. Thank you for the organizing tips and thank you for donating expired coupons to the troops and their families overseas. My husband (Navy) and I are stationed in Europe, and I, as well as other spouses, go through and use the coupons that are sent from stateside to save on groceries. The coupons are good up to 6 months from the printed expiration date. Really appreciate it :).

  24. 1st Time Couponer says:

    Thanks so much for this wonderful organizational method. I just started couponing and I attend a class and the presenter spoke of the binder method but I find that when I get to the store I dont always have the coupon that I need for an unexpected sale. I am going to try your method. As I have several people who bring me coupons and it is just starting to over run me! Thanks again.

  25. Hi,

    Thank you for presenting the hybrid method. I’m going to try it! I’m a beginner and getting quickly overwhelmed by the time it is taking me to clip all coupons I find! I’d like to become more focused on which coupons I clip and I believe your method will help me. I also loved the idea of sending the unused ones to the troops. I was becoming disappointed that all my work would go to the recycle bin. What a great alternative!

    I have a question. You mention keeping some “really HOT coupons that I know will get me FREE items or overage”. Could you please give some examples of coupons that you consider “hot”?

    Again, thank you for your system and all the great information you provided here.

    Claudia

    • For example any veggie or produce coupons I find I keep in the front of my binder because those are rare. Also sometimes companies will do promotions for FREE product coupons or High Value printables, which I like to keep up front too.

      I try to highlight when companies do those promotions so make sure to subscribe to my site so you don’t miss them! Thanks for the comment!

  26. I am just beginning Couponing and can totally see how the savings can multiply. A friend turned me o. To Bargain to Bounty or something lie that and it tells you which coupon from which insert to use for which deals. So it will say General Mills coupon from Red Plum circular on 2/2. Do you have any suggestions on how to keep that straight? He keeps stacks and stacks of circulars with the date but I don’t have time to go that far. I really like to cut the ones I know I’ll use and shop sales for those items plus keeping the circular makes sense since you can combine or might use something you wouldn’t normally just cause its a killer deal. So any ideas on keeping the dates of which circular it came from? I just started again tonight so I was cutting the ones I’ll use and writing the date and initials of the circular on each set of coupons but I can see it will get very time consuming

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