Friday, July 13, 2012

Building the Empire

This is a slogan that da boyfriend and I started using a while back to talk about all my couponing.  I've found its really helpful to keep reminding ourselves of why I got into couponing in the first place - to save money for the important things in life.  Right now, for us that means building a nice big fat emergency fund.  The point of this isn't just to accumulate "stuff" although that does tend to happen!  Its about the bottom line - paying off our debt, building our savings and having money to spend on things we want to spend it on (versus paying for shampoo or toothpaste).  For the longest time, our goal was to get into a house.  Now that we've done that, our priorities have shifted a bit but our strategy is still the same.  Getting free stuff along the way never hurts either!
Rite Aid - I wanted to take advantage of the Home Improvement gift card deal but I've really got to be better about how much I'm spending out of pocket, even on gift card deals.  So, since I was done rolling my $100 Visa gift cards at Stop & Shop, I decided to use up my last $100 Visa card at Rite Aid.  I bought five $20 Home Improvement gift cards (Limit 2 per card) and got back a $5 UP for each one = $25 profit.  The UP's are good until 8/15, but I turned most of them into cash via rebates right away.

  • Revlon Callus Shaver $6.99 and Revlon Emery Board $0.99 (BOGO 50% off, regularly $1.99), used $2 Nail & Pedicure RA coupon (July VV), two $1 coupons (6/24 SS), got back $4 UP (WYB $10, Limit 2) and will get back $4 (SCR #79, Limit 2, $4 WYB 2 beauty tools valued at $5+ but folks have confirmed its working on tools less than $5) 
*I bought some other Revlon items the other day so all in all, this deal was a $2.54 profit for me
  • Bayer Contour USB Meter $23.99 ($29.99 reg price, 20% discount), used $5 coupon and $20 RA coupon  (type in your email where it says INSERT EMAIL HERE) = $1.01 profit *Rumor is that when you buy two, you'll get a $5 UP so I'm going to pick up another tomorrow 
  • 2 Coppertone Sunscreens $7.99 each ($9.99 reg price, 20% discount), used $2 RA coupon, $5 off 2 coupon (6/24 SS) and got back $10 UP (WYB 2, Limit 2 offers) = $1.01 profit
  • St. Joseph's Aspirin $1.99 ($2.49 reg price, 20% discount), used $3 coupon (type in your email where it says INSERT EMAIL HERE) = $1.01 profit
  • Bayer Advanced Aspirin 325 mg 24 ct $1.99 (clearance price), used $3 coupon (6/24 SS) = $1.01 profit
  • Gum Periobalance $19.99 ($24.99 reg price, 20% discount), used $5 coupon and $10 RA coupon (July VV) and will get back $5 SavingStar credit = FREE/$0.01 profit
  • 2 Powerade Drinks $0.97 each, used $1.50 off 2 coupon (July VV) = $0.44 or $0.22 each
  • Tecnu First Aid Gel (2 oz) $7.99 ($9.99 reg price, 20% discount), used $2 coupon (this beeped) and will get back $5 (SCR #11) = $0.99
  • Used four $5 UP's, total was $3.78

This transaction made me a profit of $4.22.  Big thanks to Sheila (as always!) and okdeal and gambalung at SD for posting these RA deals. 

Finally found some Zest body wash the other day - $2.99 - $1 coupon (7/8 SS) and got back two $2 UP's (Limit 2) = FREE/$0.01 profit
CVS - got a 20% coupon in my email for this card but decided to use these coupons instead.  I recently learned that you can't use a % off coupon along with an X off X coupon (ie. $2 off $10). Also, using any force printed EB (from a raincheck or deal that didn't work as it was supposed to), green bag tag EB or Beauty Club EB will void the % off coupon.  What's up with that CVS?

  • 2 Nivea Lotion Tins $0.99, used two $1 Nivea CRT's = FREE/$0.02 profit 
  • 2 Head & Shoulders Shampoos $6.29 + $3.14 (BOGO 50% off sale), used BOGO coupon (7/1 P&G - took off $9.49 automatically!) = FREE
  • Dermasilk $29.99, used $5 coupon (7/8 RP), used $2 off $10 beauty CRT and $4 off $20 skincare CRT and got back $10 EB (Limit 1) = $8.99
  • Used $5 EB, $8 EB and $10 EB, total was $2.61
The Nivea tins and the Dermasilk will count towards the Beauty Club too.

On a different card, I had a $4 expiring EB to use so I bought - 
  • Nivea Q10 Shaving Gel $4.79, used $3 coupon and got back $2 EB (Limit 4, monthly deal) = $0.21 profit 
  • Nivea Lotion Tin $0.99, used $1 Nivea CRT = FREE/$0.01 profit  
  • True North Nut Snacks $4.19, will send away for TMF peelie rebate (up to $3.99) = $0.20
  • 2 Head & Shoulders Shampoos $6.29 + $3.14 (BOGO 50% off sale), used BOGO coupon (7/1 P&G - took off $9.49 automatically!) = FREE
  • Used $1 EB and $4 EB, total was $0.91
The True North rebate is valid until 9/30/12.  Instead of a rebate, you can elect to get $5 of True North coupons.

I'll sell the H&S and Dermasilk on ebay to bring in some cash.  Another way to convert EB's to cash!


Heather said...

Thanks for the prospective. I was just thinking the same thing. I got sick over the winter and let my stockpile get low. I have been back accumulating things and I was just thinking that I need to keep in mind the whole reason for couponing.

frugalsuz said...

Its so easy to get caught up in the deal of the moment, isn't it? Its really helped me to keep our little slogan fresh in my mind.

What a great feeling to be able to rely on your stockpile! That's what its all about. :)

Michelle said...

Is the home improvement gift card +UP still printing or is that over?

Michelle - in Ohio

frugalsuz said...

I believe its a monthly deal but I just looked around online and can't find confirmation of that. Sorry! I haven't tried it recently.

Michelle said...

FYI- I bought 2 of the Home Improvement gift cards yesterday and they still spit out the $5+UP.
This was awesome because I can't find any discount gift cards for Menard's. But with THESE cards I can also use the Lowe's 10% that they match.
Thanks for posting. It helped us save some money & we needed that since our one and only bathroom is completely torn apart right now. We're using the toilet in the camper. Yikes! What a girl will do to get a project completed. ;)
You do make a difference, Suz!

Michelle - in Ohio

frugalsuz said...

That's great, its so nice to know that you were able to get that deal!