10 Tips for a Debt-free Life


Track Values

There are different camps of coupon users and bulk buyers. Some clip, file and track for the maximum in savings. Others dabble in buy-one-get-one here and there with trips to the warehouse club for stock loads of diapers or toilet paper. Others toss the savings circulars and shop in frequent trips looking for what's on sale at the moment.

Knowing your spending triggers can help in choosing a value "camp." If you have a large family to feed and enjoy the bargain hunt itself, coupons are a goldmine for budget-stretching. If you eat lots of fresh food and keep short supplies on hand, fitting your lifestyle into the available coupons could lead to stocking items you won't really want to eat and use.

Shopping at bulk stores doesn't help with budgeting when you're picking up lots of extras. Stick to stores and aisles that have only what you need so you can't be tempted to buy what you don't. Many grocers now have bulk aisles without the foray past the rugs and DVDs, for example.

Reaching a balance that works for you is often a matter of tracking your receipts for awhile and trimming them down with each trip.