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Coffee with Collin: Coupon Organization Part 2

The links in the post below may be affiliate links. Read the full disclosure.

Today’s Coffee with Collin is all about my coupon binder. That’s right… today, you will get an exclusive look at my gigantic coupon binder! Plus, you’ll get lots of tips to make your very own binder!

On a side note, I had a great opportunity to visit with reader, Tambry, from Tennessee. Unfortunately, when I went back to edit the video, I discovered that it was really difficult to hear Tambry speaking. For this reason, I’ve decided to not include my conversation with Tambry in the video below. I’ve also decided to not continue with the reader conservations at this point. I am trying to think about another way to get you all involved, so stay tuned for some possible ideas.

Enjoy!

**If you can’t see the video, go here to watch it.

As you saw in the video above, my favorite coupon organization method is the three-ring binder with baseball card sleeves and clear plastic dividers. I prefer a standard three-ring binder versus the more expensive zippered binder. Although, I initially started out with a zippered binder, I was unable to zip the binder as my coupon stash expanded (which defeats the purpose). In addition, the binder was so bulky and very difficult to put in my purse. I arrange my coupons by category… you can also arrange them alphabetically.

Coupon Binder Supply List


* Heavy-Duty 3 Ring Binder
(keep in mind that Staples has all Avery Heavy-Duty View Binders at 50% Off with in-ad coupon this week)

* 4 sets of Plastic Dividers 8 count
(I highly encourage you to spend the extra money to get plastic instead of paper …it will be well worth it!)

* Baseball Card Sleeves to hold your coupons
(If you are a newbie couponer, you may only want to purchase 18-20 sleeves initially and then add more as your coupon supply grows)

* Scissors – Every couponer needs these! ;)
(Staples has the Westcott 8″ Recycled Scissors on sale for $2 with in-ad coupon this week)

Build Your Own Coupon Binder on Amazon.com:
(for those of you who would prefer to create a coupon binder from the comfort of your own home)

* Avery Durable View 3 Inch EZ-Turn Ring Binder $9.59 with FREE shipping with Amazon Prime
* Avery Style Edge Insertable Plastic Dividers 8-Tab Set $5.41 with FREE shipping with Amazon Prime
* 25 pack of baseball card sleeves $5.99 with FREE shipping with Amazon Prime
OR 100 pack of baseball card sleeves $13.75 with FREE shipping with Amazon Prime

Wondering what categories I use? Check out these FREE Hip2Save printables below to help you organize your own coupon binder…


* Hip2Save Coupon Binder Cover Sheet
* Avery Style Edge Plastic Dividers (item #11201): Page 1 and Page 2
* Avery Big Tab Insertable Plastic Dividers (item #11901 & 16282): Page 1 and Page 2

As I mentioned in this video, I highly encourage you to print off each store’s coupon policy and place it in your binder. Below are the direct links to the coupon policies of some of my favorite stores…

Rite Aid Coupon Policy
Target Coupon Policy
Walgreens Coupon Policy
Walmart Coupon Policy
* Please note that CVS does not have a coupon policy; however, check out my CVS Store Guide for lots of great tips!

If you are a newbie couponer,  start small. Instead of jumping into a binder (which can be very overwhelming), consider filling up an envelope with coupons. As you become more familiar with couponing and are determined to continue for the long term, then you may want to advance to the binder method or another organizational method of your choice.

Did you miss my past Coffee with Collin episodes?! If so, head on over here to check them all out.

A special thanks to GiftCardRescue.com for providing Tambry with a $50 Starbucks gift card! If you are in the market to buy, sell or exchange unwanted gift cards, be sure to check out GiftCardRescue.com.

Save a buck in these similar categories:

Spread the word on a great deal:

387 Hip Readers Commented

  • susan70schlaht says:

    Hi Collin,
    I am pretty new to this..I have a couple of questions? How are you getting your coupons? Do you mostly get it from the newpaper? And How many are you getting at one time? Any info would be great. I print mine usually and only get 2 for each items.
    Thank you,
    Susan

  • Carlie says:

    For those of you who may be new to “couponing” then try this method. Go to any office store or supercenter and buy a business card case. They are usually made of synthetic leather and they fit coupons great when folded in half. I have one for food items and one for non-food items. It may be less intimidating then a big binder (and less expensive) to begin with. Here is a link to give you an idea of what it looks like. http://www.staples.com/Rolodex-96-Card-Black-Vinyl-Business-Card-Book/product_415596?cmArea=sku_pd_box2

  • Carli says:

    The binder method is WAY too confusing for me. I use an old recipe box that latches on the front. Inside I have small file folders for each main category (i.e. dairy) and then dividers inside of those (i.e. cheeses, milk and eggs, sour cream/yogurt). I cut the little file folders out of regular sized ones and its a super easy and cheap method!

  • Charli says:

    Is anyone familiar with the coupon policy for Toys R Us?

    • Renee says:

      It depends- I live in SW OH and the closest to me can’t make up their minds about internet printed coupons. They have signs up at the registers saying not to accept internet coupons but before Christmas in the TRU sales ad, it stated that you could use printed coupons( Disney dvds). When I showed them this and they wouldn’t budge, I complained to corporate and received a $10 giftcard.

  • Kay says:

    I don’t know if anyone else mentioned it but I also use the dollar bill holder you can get on. These work really well with any coupon you print or Target coupons. I find I don’t have to fold them to get them to fit into the baseball card sleeves.

  • dwagnfly says:

    I used to use a binder. I found that the dividers were adding unneccessary bulk. So, I used sticky tabs that I could apply directly to the baseball card pages. Worked like a charm.

    • Collin says:

      Great idea! :)

    • SAHMinCambridge says:

      This is what I currently do, and am not happy with it, the tabs lose their stick pretty quickly, and I find I have to be gentle when grabbing one to flip the page, Im going to bite the bullet and get the one’s Collin has those oval tabs are so cute!

  • Joy says:

    Love the video! Collin, what do you do when you get the P&G big coupon books? File the books in the binder? Tear out each one & file in the baseball card holders???

    • Collin says:

      I actually haven’t even organized those yet… kinda slacking! ;) Right now I just have this booklet in my coupon purse. However, I pretty much know what coupons are in there, so when I’m out shopping it’s pretty easy to remember to flip through those coupons when I’m looking at specific P&G products.

      • robin says:

        Hi Collin! Thanks for everything you do. Couldn’t do it w/out you!!!!

        I have had a binder together for a while but decided to get it organized like yours. I printed the label page for the avery plastic dividers that you posted. I bought these at walmart and never could figure out how to print w/ a template so I wrote on them and they don’t look so nice. On the second page you have some categories repeated and some categories not listed. I have been trying to figure out how to edit them but I can’t :(

  • Devin says:

    Hi Collin,

    I just looked at your coupon list and was wondering what category do you put your restaurant coupons in? Or what do you do with them?

    Thanks for all your hard work.

    • Collin says:

      Hi Devin,

      You could have a section in your binder for these. I, however, just have them in a desk drawer. When we want to go out to dinner (lunch, breakfast, fast food), we just open the drawer, look through the coupons and pick the restaurant we want to go to.

      • Kimberly says:

        I keep our restaurant coupons in my car, so we always have them with us. We go out with friends every Sunday after church, so that worked best for us :)

  • robin says:

    Hi Collin! Thanks for everything you do. Couldn’t do it w/out you!!!!

    I have had a binder together for a while but decided to get it organized like yours. I printed the label page for the avery plastic dividers that you posted. I bought these at walmart and never could figure out how to print w/ a template so I wrote on them and they don’t look so nice. On the second page you have some categories repeated and some categories not listed. I have been trying to figure out how to edit them but I can’t :(

  • Megan A says:

    Hi Collin, thanks for the video today. SO helpful! I was just wondering where you got your cute shirt? I love it! Thanks!

  • debbie says:

    1) I use the binder method (love it). Keep my binder in a soft bag (got on clearance at Target) that I can actually pull down in the cart so it’s exposing the top of my binder and I can open it further. (Hope you can visualize this).
    2) I’m very specific on my categories: Laundry, medicine, toothpaste, body wash, razors, deodorant, shampoo, makeup, lotions, good smelling stuff, cleaning products, personal (tampons, ky, etc.), dishwasher/dishsoap, baby stuff, cat/dog, nuts/snacks/chips, juice, produce/breads, canned goods, boxed goods,condiments, cereal, granola bars, dairy, meat, frozen food, general (bottled water, ziploc, etc…), paper goods (toilet, papertowel). You can put in whatever order you like. No reason for my madness.I just happen to know exactly where they are now and don’t want to change my order.
    3) I stick my sticker right to the baseball insert (don’t use dividers).
    4) A tip for timing- I buy 6 papers and find I can clip 6 at one time by putting all the “like” pages together and clipping all at once (Collins method). No staples, no nothing. Just clip. It’s really pretty easy once you get the hang of it. I usually do this on my bed while watching TV. If I’m in a hurry and don’t have time to put them all in the dividers, I will just drop them in the section they belong in and when I’m watching TV next I will go through each section and actually put them in the baseball inserts. Just makes it less overwhelming but I feel like I at least have done one step and I can do the other step later that day or the next day. I am not afraid to fold coupons. You really need to get used to this if you are going to use the binder method.
    5) I am a fan of the thicker baseball card holders. It’s much easier to get your coupons into these especially when you have multiples.
    6) I have pocketed dividers ONLY for my stores. Riteaid and Target also have baseball card holders behind the divider to put my video value coupons and my Target coupons. The pocketed dividers allow me to put my grocery catalinas or store coupons, ie: Kroger mailers.
    7) Everyone has their own organization method. But one of my habits is to have big black clips attached to the front of my 3′ binder (picture the binder Collin uses). As soon as I checkout, I clip my receipt to the front of my binder. I always know at the end of the day where my receipts are. I actually have a couple of these clips. You never know when a clip is going to come in handy. Sometimes I grocery shop with a friend and I’ll clip her coupons to one and mine to another.
    8) I have 110 baseball card inserts in my 3″ binder. If for some reason I run out of room in a certain section, I will double up coupons and put some back to back. I don’t have to do this often but some months you have double P&G’s for a week.
    9) I can’t even imagine not having all my coupons with me all the time.
    10) THANK YOU COLLIN! I learned to coupon from your site and have been a HIP saver for almost a year now.

  • Anonymous says:

    I love this, I’m going to buy one because I’m tired of using envelopes! Thanks, love your video!!!

  • lisa says:

    Collin I’m so jealous of your binder, I want one!! I’m going to create one as you said, from the comfort of my own home and get one started from Amazon. I can’t tell you enough how excited I am, I LOVED your video!! Thanks for all you amazing ideas, I’ve been using envelopes for my coupons and they aways get destroyed or milk from my baby’s bottle that always leaks on them in my diaper bag, or I can never find a coupon when I’m at the store but as soon as I get home I look in my envelope and there it is arrrggg. Ahh I can’t believe it’s taken me sooo long to make the plunge, but you made it seem fun and easy. oh and btw, I love your vinyl tree on your wall, your home looks so cozy and beautiful. Thanks for all your great ideas and for all you do!!

  • Susan says:

    I actually put my Target coupons in with my manufacturer’s coupons so I know immediately when I have a stack. I don’t get multiple inserts, so I don’t usually have a problem with coupons fitting in the baseball sleeves. I do fold them width-wise, but length wise, I usually don’t unless they’re on the top row. I can still see what is above them, especially if it’s another long internet printable. The binder method is very time consuming, but I like having my coupons with me all the time. Well actually, I have the binder in a separate bag, because I always know when I’ll be shopping when I go out, so I grab it and the diaper bag if I’m with my kids, or just move my wallet into it if they’re staying at home with my husband. For my restaurant and store (with no grocery) coupons, I use the coupon holder I outgrew a long time ago and keep it in my diaper bag/purse.

  • Christine says:

    I actually left a really long, detailed comment about my method a couple videos back. I’ve since made a couple tweaks, and thought I’d share again, though I’ll try and keep it short and sweet :)

    I now have a coupon purse…super cute, has tinkerbell on the front, and fits file folders and baseball pages perfectly :) I only buy 2 papers a week, so this might not work as well for people with more. The first thing in my purse is baseball card holders, clipped together with book binder rings, so basically a binder without the case. I also have a neat pouch I just bought at Office Max (with the 15% off bag in last weeks paper). It is one main compartment, but within it there are 3 smaller pockets. I have scissors, paper clips, a calculator, and post-its in it. I try to only clip coupons I know I’ll use, but still have 20 or so baseball pages, divided alphabetically. Behind that I have plain file folders. The first one has my coupon database (I keep my own because my qs don’t always match the sites-regional, etc.) Then I have a folder for qs that need filed, and the newest inserts until I have a chance to enter them into my database. I also keep a few extra bb card pages in case I need them. Then I just have several more folders, labeled by date, and keep my inserts filed. I also have a few regular prong folders for certain stores. I keep bb inserts in the prongs for VV & Meijer Mealbox qs, and I can also keep that store ad, policy, and list in there. If I only have a quick minute to run in, or if I need to send my hubby (he’s not to fond of carrying the tink purse ;)), I can just grab that store folder. Hope this helps someone out. Oh, and I’m not sure if anyone mentioned it on this board, but I remember reading awhile back about putting the qs in the baseball slots so the tops are all towards the long right edge, that way when the binder is sitting on it’s side, you can more easily read them.

  • Anonymous says:

    In your last coffee with collin someone named Ashley commented that she uses a combination of the binder method, and the one where you keep the ads, without cutting all of the coupons. I would love more info on this method. Like, what does her list look like that tells her where all the coupons are? Where does she get it? And how does she store the ads? Are they in plastic sleeves or does she just hole punch them? It sounds like the perfect method for me. Thanks!

    • Christine says:

      I’m not Ashley, but thought I might be able to help since I do the same thing. As far as where to get a list, I’ve heard a lot of people use taylortownpreview.com to print their list from, or they just refer to a database like Collin’s. I personally prefer to use my own spreadsheet because I have a lot of the regional differences and often don’t have the coupons mentioned.

      As for storing the ads, I’ve tried both methods you mentioned. I started by keeping them in the regular page protector, but they can be hard to fit if you have more than one copy, plus you can’t flip through them as quickly at the store, you have to fumble with pulling them out and putting them back in. As for hole punching, I also tried that, very briefly before I got to where I am now. The only problem with that was as you started using coupons, it would get kind of messy. For example, you clip a q that the bottom hole punches through, now that page kind of dangles out past the others…after cutting enough coupons, you end up with one hole and is just doesn’t lay as neatly. Hope that made sense? Of course I’m also borderline OCD I think, so that kind of thing drives me nuts, lol. I did a post just above yours with my current method, maybe that would help?

      • micaela says:

        i’m still a little confused, but would love to here more on this method.

        • Pam says:

          I also do both file & binder. I take the time to clip the coupons and put in my binder the coupons for item I know my family uses. I also clip any obvious high value coupons, BOGO or coupons that are less then $1.00 for one product, as my store will double those.
          Then I file the rest of the insert into a plastic file, divided into months. Each week I visit Hip2Save for good match-ups, mostly fort drug stores matchups so I can roll my ECB or RR ect,. Therefore, I can still get to the coupons involved in a good match-up but I don’t waste my time clipping every coupon, most that, without a good matchup, will never get used.
          I find this is working well for me. I hope this helps

  • sabers says:

    I have been through about 4 different methods for organizing my coupons and think I finally have something I am happy with now. I used to only clip things that I thought my husband and I would use, but found that I was missing great deals for things that I dont usually buy, but wouldnt mind trying since it was .14 cents. Then I was clipping everything, because I didnt want to miss a deal, but it became a huge time commitment. Not to mention I have several people who give me their coupon inserts but that I only see every few weeks, so I would have to match those to the like coupons already filed which was even more tedious. Now I have two of the plastic wallet sized organizers that I sit open side by side in a small tote I got free with coupons. I clip and file printables, all you coupons, direct mailers, and other random bits I get from other sources. I also have a slot for each store so that catalinas, register rewards, and store coupons are all together and easy to find. I have a hanging file box that I stick the inserts in by weeks and I clip those as I go. I look at the store matchups and decide which stores I want to go to and make a list of what I want to get when Im there. I clip what I need for each store and paper clip those to the list and toss those in my bag. It makes it so much easier to only clip what I use, and I can get deals for myself, friends, family and donation with very little time commitment. I think the key is to find out what works for you, and dont be afraid to try something new or a mixture of methods.

    • ♥☺ ♥ says:

      LIKE

    • Shevin Ramsey says:

      I sorta do the same thing. I have a binder that I have in different categories (I have the tabs set up in the order that I go in when I’m shopping in my Publix). However I found the plastic divider pages with a pocket on the front and back of it. So, I have the front of the pockets for different categories as well. (ex. clear page divider pocket – FREE item coupons, yellow page divider pocket = Target coupons, pink divider pocket page = kids store, blue divider pocket = women clothing stores) I used to cut out all the coupons every week, but life around here gets kinda crazy around here with three boys (5, 4 & 2) a hubby that works full time on his business plus goes to school, well it leaves me alone a lot taking care of the fellas & clipping coupons is usually last on my list. Sooooo….while looking in the office supply section at my local Target I found small plastic accordion style folders that actually velcro shut & they go into a three ring binder. I got three of them in green – for Publix coupon booklets, red – Red Plum coupons ads/books, and finally a purple one – for Smart Source coupon ads/books. I put those in the very back after all of my category sections. Now what I do is when I get the paper I open it up & get out the Red Plum/Smart Source & write the date on the front page/cover then place them in the correct accordion folder & place it on top since it’s the most recent. Then when I have time I start from the back & cut them out as I can (I check dates of course so I’m not wasting time) they actually can hold quite a few of them too! I’m luck since I don’t have to buy multiple papers I usually buy 1 then I get my parents when my dad is done with them & I also get my grandma’s & then of course internet coupons are super! I shop once a week & a day or two before I make a list & use a website that lets me make a list of the items I want at the stores I need to go to. Just like here she tells you where to find the coupon. I usually will look in the specific category first but then if it’s not there I go to my accordion folder for SS/RD and find the one with the date I’m looking for & viola there’s the coupon! I cut it out from there & any multiples I have/need & go on to the next item on my list.
      I also just have a generic little accordion coupon organizer (the kind most peeps have) that I put the coupons & list in for the day. I don’t categorize them b/c I have them in order of my shopping trip and as I use them I put them in the very front pocket of it. The other thing I have in my traveling coupon organizer are some restaurants, Target coupons in it’s own section, and any other stores (like Toys R Us/Hallmark/Build A Bear). Since most days I go out with a 4 & 2 year old the big binder was just too much & if I was able to go by myself to Target I was spending way too much time in there looking through the binder. So I put in makeup, some cleaning & laundry & toy coupons in my Target section b/c I know those go on clearance a lot there so I’m sorta ready, and I have found that if I don’t get a deal it’s ok. The little purse organizer works best for me when I’m out & about w/ my boys in tow.
      Back to my big three ring binder: This is what I do with the other pockets & ads….In the very back pocket of the binder I have the P&G ads (and any lose coupon sheets I get randomly form people if I don’t get time to cut them out) in a manila file folder, also all of my coupon policies are back there. In the front pocket of the actual binder is where I have my rebate offers. Both active (as in waiting for the check & deals that I could get if I wanted them.
      So, I use a mix of methods & that’s what I encourage others to do: Find what works for you & go with it! If it’s saving you money & is not stressful & you get it then who cares what it looks like or how crazy you might look. It’s crazier to not hang on to your hard earned money!!

  • Joy says:

    Collin (luv your name-my son is named Colin) I had a few more ideas on reader input…
    You could seek posts on these topics and read a few of the best:
    * most memorable deal
    * what gave you coupon “confidence”
    Also, you could put up a post with various “Coffee with Collin” potential topics and readers could vote based on the info they need most. You’re great! keep up the good work!

  • Jennifer C. says:

    Got another tip for you. I divide my binder by store. I have a Rite Aid, CVS, Walgreens and Target sections. Saves time flpping back and forth looking in difference sections. I get the deal list each week, put them all in the store category tab and when I am shopping it sort of serves as my shopping list too. A don’t miss a deal. Hope this helps someone.

  • Mary says:

    Quick question Collin. Do you put your coupons on both sides of the baseball card holder or just one per slot? Wondering what works best for you? thanks!!!!!

    • mel says:

      My binder is made up mostly of photo page refills (4×6), they are 5 slots – 3 horizontal, 2 vertical. The ones that are vertical I can actually fit 2 small coupons in the slot, so max I can fit per page is 7, though sometimes I can overlap coupons in the horizontal slot too. Anyway, if I run out of space (which is rare), I stick a colored sheet of paper (or you can use white printer paper), that I cut to size to slip in and I can use the back and front of the photo page. I found that I would overlook coupons if I had them back to back in the slot.
      .
      Some of my categories do have baseball card holders, for those the only time I use front & back is for the same type coupon. Like P&G will have the same value for Dawn, but different exp date. The oldest one I will file on the front of the page, while I will file the older exp date facing the back page. I can fit comfortably 8-10 like coupons per pocket. I do use thicker baseball card sleeves, the flimsy ones you get from like the Dollar Tree just don’t hold up as well. Over the summer, I found a 25-pack for only .25 at a local thrift store.

  • Janell says:

    After going thru a ton of comments, I’ve yet to find one that mentions the 50% off Q for the Staples Avery Binder. I went there this morning and they had no clue about a Q for that. Where did you get the Q Collin. The binder without it is too expensive…Please Help!

    • Tara Blanchard says:

      Go online to Staples.com and view their weekly ad in the top right corner. They should also have a copy of the weekly ad at the register.

    • Heidi says:

      I just got back from Staples and I actually printed the coupon off the Staples Website (which provided a Ringcode the cashier was easily able to put into register.) i got the heavy duty 3″ binder for $5.49.

  • Tara Blanchard says:

    Collin,

    Thanks so much. I have been using a binder system since you first inspired me to coupon (about a year ago). I was starting to freak out about the lack of organiztion in my binder, and my mom told me about your Coffee with Collin segment. Can I just say you are my HERO!?!?!?! I have learned soooo much from you over the past year. (After losing my job in May, this has really been the only way my family has stayed afloat financially – THANKS!!!)

  • muser says:

    Ahh, this couldn’t have come at a more convenient time! I switched from the accordian wallet to the binder method over the weekend. I did the accordian thing for an entire year. It was somewhat difficult to flip through in the store, BUT I could always find everything so easily because it was very organized. Within each category, I had subcategories, and then everything was alphabetical by brand within subcategories. This way, if I was looking for a Colgate coupon on the fly, I’d go to “Hygeine,” find the toothpastes, and flip through to C. This also made it really easy to file away new coupons while pulling out expired ones. The thing that makes me nervous about the binder is I cannot do everything alphabetical by brand within subcategories, because I’d have to constantly migrate coupons around each week. I’m hoping that having all the coupons exposed will make this not as big of an issue, but doing it one way for a year and then changing to this new method has me very nervous! Sounds so silly, I know!

    I have a question about folding. I’ve only ever folded a few of the giant coupons when using my accordian wallet. With the binder method, I had to fold almost half of them, and all the internet printables. My question is, has anyone had any trouble at the register after folding a coupon over the barcode? I was trying to take care to make the crease between barcodes, but that’s just too time consuming. I just want to make sure they scan with ease. Any tips, ideas, based on folks who have experience with this?

    Thanks! :)

    • mel says:

      Muser, my coupons are not filed alphabetically within my sub categories. But I do try to put like brands together. So for laundry, I try to put all Tide coupons together. For Cereal though, I have 1 page for GM, 1 for Kelloggs and 1 for other brands just b/c sometimes I have alot of different coupons and they never fit on just one page.

      As far as folding coupons through the bar code, yes they scan just fine. Thats one reason I don’t really care for base ball card holders, b/c the slots are too small. I do use them for a few of my categories, but a majority of my binder is made of photo page refills. There are only 5 slots per page vs 9 with the bball sleeves, but the 2 that are vertical, I can put 2 small coupons in those slots. The plus with the photo pages are I don’t normally have to fold over coupons. For IPs, I can fold right between the 2 bar codes , so I have all the important information facing the front – product/amt off & exp date. Another thing I do with large coupons is I fold them longways first, right above the bar code, then fold in half to file. Sometimes I get the meat of the coupon (product, value & exp date) facing up that way.
      Hope that makes sense!

  • love2savemoney says:

    Collin, love the binder video. You got me started on the binder, ( still a working progress ) a few months ago. I went to a coupon class and they mentioned your site :)

    I was just wondering…could you do a video on how you do your grocery list with the match up of coupons? I’m having a hard time with this. I try to plan a menu for the week, and trying to get the good sales as well. I’ve even try to work my menu around the sale ads.

    Also, would love to see your stockpile : )

    Have a wonderful day!!

  • Shannon says:

    Hey Collin!
    Thanks for the great video! Looks like we are on the same page. I’ve been heavy into coupons since the beginning of February and I just upgraded my 1″ to a 3″ and bought 2 more packs of baseball card sleeves! I find they are under $5 at both Target and WalMart – although mu WalMarts are out of stock.

    When I shop at the pharmacies or Target, I try to get the manufacture and store match ups ahead of time and clip them together. Saves me time on trying to find them in the store.

    I also keep a few of the black clips with me. When I am using a coupon I just begin clipping them together, and the other clip is for coupons I decide not to use. Really helps for organization. Last time I was at Target I had 76 coupons and needed two clips!

    I printed off your table of contents and decided to adjust to your list. I had most of them, but others seem to make more sense your way. And I am upgrading to plastic sleeves asap!

    THANKS again for all you do!!!!

  • Julie says:

    Collin
    Thank you so much for what you do! I love your site! I just wanted to say thanks for the tip on the “freebie” coupon section of your binder. I’ve always just filed mine according to their category but think that section is a GREAT idea. I’ll be adding it very soon!

  • tjackso5 says:

    Hi Collin-
    I use the binder method and it works like a charm. I have a couple of ideas to add which are super helpful to me-
    Place your most used catagories right up front. (Free, restaurant, rewards(register/CVS), groupons, and such. Also make sure that you print out a one page calendar and back that with the upcoming inserts calendar.
    I also have a pending transactions tab with a heavy duty plastic envelope (looks like a manila interoffice envelope just plastic.) As soon as I am done with that particular store trip, my receipt goes back into the pending tab and I empty this when I am done w/ my errands.
    At the back of my binder, I have 4 regular sheet protectors that I fold the current store flyers into so that I always have them @ all times. One for grocery stores, drugstores, mass retailers and specialty stores.
    The last thing in the very back of my binder is an empty file pocket that I can put inserts or printables that need to be clipped. I purposely keep all my current unclipped inserts in my binder because that makes me be organized and current. It simply doesn’t allow me to go more than 2 weeks w/o clipping. (I get 3 papers weekly). Being the type A person I am, my binder is the one lifeline that I need to be able to grab and go @ anytime. Plus, if I have to kill some time( dr appts and such) I utilize that as binder time.
    Anyone (including my husband & teenage sons) can go into my binder & find anything @ their fingertips! My family’s mantra is “do you have a coupon or did you check the binder?”

    Thanks for all you do – Teena

    • muser says:

      I love that. If I saw someone clipping coupons w/ a giant binder while in a dr’s office waiting room, I’d totally high-five ‘em!

  • Tanya says:

    A ready-to-use orginal Collin Coupon Binder would be an AMAZING give away…lol just an idea. ;)

  • Jenny says:

    Hey ladies! I was wondering if anyone knew if Target accepts coupons on free items. Such as a BOGO free sale with 2 coupons for money off?

  • micaela says:

    what does everyone do with booklets? (i.e. the HUGE p&g booklets, home made easy, etc.)

    • melissa says:

      I clip the ones out that I know I will most probably use and file them. The rest of the booklet gets tossed in my plastic container where I keep my inserts stacked. Now, for the P&G Everyday Savings booklet, I only pulled the most recent coupons out, so all the ones expiring 4/30 are filed. If I need another coupon for a sale, then I can get the booklet and pull out what I need.

  • AS says:

    I have a question for anyone out there who uses a mac to print off coupons. When I go to print off coupons from coupons.com, smartsource.com or redplum.com it will print but it will print a page with nothing on it. However, I can print Target coupons just fine. Does anyone know why this is and how I can fix it? At first I thought it was my printer but like I said, I can print from Target.com just fine. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance!

  • denisestines says:

    Does anyone know where you can purchase the baseball card holders in a store?? I am so excited I want to get mine today and Amazon does not have them available till the end of the week.

    • magellan_02 says:

      I found the baseball card sleeves at target in the toy section. They have a pack of 65 sheets for only $9.99. This may be a cheaper way to go if you don’t have Amazon Prime to get the free shipping.
      I messed up and bought 25 sheets on Amazon for 3.99 but had to pay 3.99 for shipping. Wish I would have shopped around before purchasing online.

      • denisestines says:

        Thanks! I just called my Target and they don’t have any. I also checked Walmart with no luck. Maybe Michael’s or another craft store??

        • Jennifer says:

          At my WalMart they are up towards the front of the store (kind of by the book/magazine section) and there’s an aisle of “hobbyish” and “As Seen on TV” items..very random things. I had called ahead and asked my WalMart if they had the baseball card sleeves and was told no and then I went in that night (after watching one of Collin’s earlier videos where she shows you were they are at) and they did have them! I recognized the aisle in her video-Follow Me Monday Week 2 Part 2 and went right to the store and there they were–so much for Walmart telling me that they didnt carry them. HTH!

    • Jan Mullen says:

      I purchase my baseball card sheets and the plastic divider pages from the dollar tree for 1.00 per 10 pages. I built my binder about 3 months ago and the pages are holding up just fine so far. Bought my 3 in Case-It binder at walmart for about 14.97. Love it!!! Has a handle and a long strap for carrying over your shoulder. Also has side zippered pocket for extras such as your ads or other inserts. I put in a small zippered type pouch that has the rings to place in the binder to hold my scissors, pens, a few paper clips and any small things that I may need. I really loved the binder method. Hope this helps!!!!

  • magellan_02 says:

    I love the binder method. This video did give me some good ideas. I was using business card sleeves before and that made it tough to fold the coupons so small and still be able to tell what they were for. I just purchased some basball card sleeves and currently in the process of switching. GREAT IDEA! Now I am on the look out for a cute bag that I can carry it in. If anyone knows where I can get one cheap I would appreciate it.

  • Nicole says:

    Where have I been? I never knew the date was on the binding on the coupon inserts. You made my day!!! WOW – that makes couponing soooo much easier.

  • Melissa says:

    I am new to a binder method and want to begin. What size binder should I use? I looked at 3 inch binders and they looked so big! Would something smaller work?

    • Jennifer says:

      I really depends on how many inserts you get each week and how many coupons you need to file. I first began with a 2 inch last year and am now using a 3 inch. I know it seems big but I actually have access to 20 inserts a week and have a ton of coupons in my binder. I found that I was outgrowing my 2 inch and the pages didn’t want to turn easily. If you’re just starting out you could start with a smaller binder and see how it works for you, and maybe move up to a bigger one if you need to…but a 2 inch may work great for you.

    • cathy says:

      You may want to buy the sheets first, and see how many you use. A 1 1/2″ binder holds 35 sheets nicely. I’m thinking about using to binders. A small binder for just drugstore items and a large one for the supermarket. I have three times the food coupons as I do drugstore.

      Many people have said it, there is no right or wrong way to org your coupons. It’s what way works best for you.

  • ARio says:

    Is there anyway to edit the printables?

  • cathy says:

    My sons’ collected cards for years. We found that the Progard by Enor Corporation hold up the best. They still have a couple dozen 3″ binders of cards. Some of the sheets are 15 years old, and they are still in great shape. Nice thick sheets. Toy-r-us sells them for 65 sheets for $12.99.

  • K-Mart sells the baseball sheets. They are thicker the ones I can purchase at Wal-Mart.

  • Shelly says:

    Hi Collin love the video’s!! Just a quick question when you separate your coupons into the baseball sleeves do you put all the same product in one. or do you put a variety of similar products into one sleeve? Keep the video’s coming I enjoy my coffee watching you and your helpful successful ideas!!

  • Carolyn A. says:

    Love my coupon binder! I actually got my plastic dividers from Target in the $1.00 bin!! I couldn’t believe my eyes when I found them back when they had the school supplies and they have worked wonders for me, they have held up great! Just a tip if you can’t afford the $30 cost now wait a few months when the school supplies go on sale and see if they have the dividers back in the Target bins for just a dollar! You can also check out garage sales or thrift stores for school supplies. I promise they will be very inexpensive. For a bag I use a reusable bag to haul my binder around. The hospital gave me a cute one after I had my baby and that is what I use so FREE!!

  • Kim says:

    To all those military couponers, I found the baseball card inserts at the PX yesterday by baseball and game cards. They have a 30 pack for $4.75 I was super excited to find them! I can’t wait to start organizing them :) I love the blog Collin keep up the good work!

  • Yolanda says:

    Is that in the toy store or the actual px, because here they have them separated and I’m wondering since I need more! Thanks

  • Kim says:

    Yolanda, Im at Fort Knox and they were in the actual PX, in a weird spot, in the back by customer service in between the shoes and electronics, if you cant find them maybe ask a worker! HTH

  • sck7290 says:

    I recently made my own coupon binder after using a small coupon mini organizer for about 2 years. Today was my first test run out in the stores… It was GREAT! So easy to flip to and compare deals and coupons. I even encountered another couponer who complimented me on my binder! She asked where I got it and I explained that I made it myself. She was using the photo album method and said it just wasn’t working for her. I was proud to show off my beautiful new binder! Not to mention, I saved $32.51 at Target and $12.50 at Walgreens. Twas a good day of saving! Scored big at Walgreens. I went in to buy Claritin. I bought Claritin Non-Drowsy ([30] tablets) for 23.99. Here’s how I ended up making bank:
    MFG for $5.00 off (I believe it was 20 count tablets or more)
    WAG coupon for $4.00 (in our weekly ad, 20 tablets or more I believe).
    I pulled the first box off then saw the box behind it was for the same price but had 33% more free! I ended up getting Claritin 40 tablets for $14.99 (before tax)!!!

    Happy saving!

  • sck7290 says:

    I recently made my own coupon binder after using a small coupon mini organizer for about 2 years. Today was my first test run out in the stores… It was GREAT! So easy to flip to and compare deals and coupons. I even encountered another couponer who complimented me on my binder! She asked where I got it and I explained that I made it myself. She was using the photo album method and said it just wasn’t working for her. I was proud to show off my beautiful new binder! Not to mention, I saved $32.51 at Target and $12.50 at Walgreens. Twas a good day of saving! Scored big at Walgreens. I went in to buy Claritin. I bought Claritin Non-Drowsy ([30] tablets) for 23.99. Here’s how I ended up making bank:
    MFG for $5.00 off (I believe it was 20 count tablets or more)
    WAG coupon for $4.00 (in our weekly ad, 20 tablets or more I believe).
    I pulled the first box off then saw the box behind it was for the same price but had 33% more free! I ended up getting Claritin 40 tablets for $14.99 (before tax)!!!

    Happy saving!

  • Lisa B says:

    At the beginning of my bedrest (pregancy) I made a huge to-do list to keep myself from going crazy… For some reason I saved my “make a coupon binder” for last. Well Today I finished it (thanks to your inspiring video based on your binder). I have been using a large receipt acordian binder for years (grew out of it years ago)! I am also a scrapbooker and I used a 12×12 size scrapbook binder (zipper) with assorted 12×12 organizing pages (like your baseball pages but bigger). My binder is actually for a scrapbooking crop so it has a messenger style strap and it’s awesome quality (very strong). I had this binder laying around as well as the pages and even plastic 12×12 dividers so my OPP was nothing. I am so excited. I now give this baby permission to come… he’s done cooking and my to-do list is officially completed. Thank you Collin.

  • Sakura says:

    Check office depot’s clearance section, I picked up 6 Heavy Duty 3″ binders for $2.56 each! Also, make sure you buy good quality baseball card holders. The heavier plastic doesn’t rip at all.

  • Jim Carlson says:

    Newbie coupon guy here… Pretty basic right now.
    I clip those coupons that I know my family will use and put into a hand held plastic accordion folder with ~20 dividers. I only get two Sunday paper inserts. I use the cardboard bottom for a case of soda to keep my inserts and keep them in date order. I plan all my shopping, so I know what I will be purchasing with or without coupons. I use black clips to attach the coupons I plan to use to the weekly flyer with my shopping list. I try not to purchase anything that is not on my shopping list.. I might miss some unexpected bargains, but decided that a more targeted approach to coupons would work best for me and my family.
    Thanks for both the information and the inspiration this site provides.

  • Mandi Y. says:

    After much debate I really am making the switch to a binder. I’ve tried 3 different types of coupon organization and the binder is just where I’m gonna have to leap to.

    Now I’m deciding whether to use the baseball holders or the photo card holders or a combo of both.

    I have an Avery 3″ binder here already that I can use and I’ll just purchase the dividers and holders this weekend. Hoping to have my coupons fully organized and switched by mid next week to show to my sister that is visiting out of town :)

  • Mandi Y. says:

    I wanted to followup and just say that when I purchased the items listed in the post my total cost was NOTHING near $35, it was closer to $55! After purchasing the plastic dividers for $5/ea set…and you said grab 4 sets…then I nabbed 4 packages of 35pages of baseball card pockets…those cost $5/ea set…just in those items alone my total was already $40 then add in the cost of the binder that was the Avery one you have in the vid was around $13. I’m still glad that I went the binder route because I can ALREADY see how it’s going to save me SO much time….I also noticed that ALOT of the printable coupons when folded will either show you the value of savings and for what item…or folded the other way to show the expiration date…I’d not see the value of the coupon and for what item..so I am glad I can just flipthe page to see on the back for the expiration date.

    Thanks so much again for the informative video! I was shocked at the overall ending cost of the binder setup but it was well worth it!

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