Extreme Couponing {for Normal People}

The new season of TLC’s Extreme Couponing premieres this evening at 10pm.  Will you be watching?   I will definitely be watching so that I can discuss it live tomorrow morning at 7:15am on WINK. Local readers–I really hope you’ll tune in to watch. (Non-local readers can catch the clip on the WINK News website.)


To me, TLC’s show is a double-edged sword.  On the one hand, I really think it is great that so many people have found renewed financial hope in the form of coupons.  The economy has left a lot of people struggling & shows like Extreme Couponing show people in a very real way that the every little bit helps.    On the other hand, the show has on more than one occasion promoted unethical, unkind, and downright illegal behavior.  That is unacceptable.

But ultimately you gotta take good with the bad.

Lots of us have already figured out that using coupons is an awesome way to save money for your family, especially on those things you have to buy–food, toiletries, diapers–whether you feel like it or not.  It is just a smarter way to shop.

If you stumbled upon this site somehow and are just now entering this whole new world of coupons, then you have come to the right place!  This website is an abundant supply of useful information on how to start extreme couponing, or as I like to call it, “Extreme Couponing for Normal People™.”

If you are new, you might be overwhelmed, so I am going to try make it as simple as possible for you!  Here are three simple things you can do right away to get started on the path to coupon success:

1.  Grab my free eBook

The first thing you’ll want to do is check out the LWSL Beginner’s Guide to Coupons.  It is an eight-week series that breaks down the entire process of extreme couponing into easy-to-follow baby steps.   You can read the whole series online, or you can download and print the free eBook version:

LWSL Beginner’s Guide to Coupons Free eBook

Did I mention it’s free? (What’s better than free?)

2.  Check out the LWSL YouTube Channel

In my Extreme Couponing for Normal People™ video series I take you along on real shopping trips & show you not only what I buy, which coupons to use, how to check out with a whole stack of coupons, and what things not to do!

Here is one of my more recent videos:

{Get the Rock Bottom Price List mentioned in video here}

3.  Take a class

If you live here in Southwest Florida, you can attend an in-person coupon workshop.  My next class will be a 5 hour Extreme Couponing Mega Workshop, scheduled for Saturday, November 5th.  You can read more details here, or contact me at ruth@livingwellspendingless.com to register.

If Florida is too far away, or if that date doesn’t work for you, I am excited to soon be offering online classes through Growth Education.  The first online course session will begin Tuesday, October 18th, and you can read more details and enroll here:

LWSL Beginner’s Guide to Coupons Online Class Enrollment

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If you’ve been reading this blog for a while but haven’t quite dared take the plunge into extreme couponing, I really encourage you to give it a try.  Even if you’re on a special diet or eat only organic, there are still ways to save serious money with coupons.  Remember, any savings is better than none.

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What are your thoughts on the new season of Extreme Couponing?  If you’ve been using coupons for a while, do you have any tips to share with the newbies?  And if you’re new, what questions do you have?

Affiliate links may be used in this post. Printing a coupon or ordering a product through this link may result in a commission, which helps pay for the cost of running this site and keeps the content free. Read my full disclosure policy here.

{ 15 comments… add one }

  • Debbie September 28,

    Have to say I will be watching as well. I really enjoy the show but I know it’s not for REAL NORMAL people. I surely don’t need 100 bottles of hot sauce! What I do wish the show would do is focus more on their strategies and how they come up with the lists that they create, I’ve seen different methods, spreadsheets, Ipad, etc. I’d like to see more of the intracicies behind the developing of the list with coupons rather then the filling of the cart. Ooh let’s go get these 300 pkgs of toothbrushes and clear the shelf! NOT.. I think it’s rude when they do that. I like when I see those that order like dog food or cat food ahead of time and it all goes to a local shelter, THAT I do think is nice, pre order and donate. This shelf clearing crap is ridiculous!

    I live in Northern IL and we have no stores that double or triple, etc. like some of these people seem to have. I can go to WI and go to 2 stores that double, but they require a $25 purchase & you’re limited to 5 coupons for doubling. It’s really been more trouble then it’s worth. I prefer to shop at target and walmart, to get what i need and stack those coupons.

    Ruth, love your videos and can’t wait until tomorrow to see your thoughts on tonights show. I’ll be watching it thru the link (obviously 😉 ) and am excited to see what you think!

  • Michelle September 28,

    I’ll probably be watching. I’m new to couponing. I didn’t start to coupon until I started looking at your site actually. I do think what they do on the show is a tad crazy. No one needs 1000 tubes of toothpaste or other items.

  • Erin September 29,

    I will be watching! I don’t think I will ever buy as much as the couponers on the show but I would love be able to get at least 50% off but prefer 75%. Unfortunately I am stuck at 20-30%. I am also very lucky to have a store that holds 10 for $10 sales in my town that doubles coupons up to $0.50. The Kroger store I frequent doubles up to $0.99 and others close by double up to$0.50. The problem is finding the sales. I don’t have a stockpile yet so I am buying pretty much everything I need. I know it will get better! I figure by summer I will have a nice stockpile and be saving in my goal percentages.

    Ruth, keep up the good work! Your websites and videos have been a life saver for me in explaining everything.

  • sabrina blanco September 29,

    Hi Ruth i would love to watch the clip but i can’t find it can you please post the link

  • Claire September 30,

    Just home from a three day trip for work to Toronto – catching up on all your posts! The husband and I are going to catch up on the new episode this eve. I love saving money with coupons but I’ll admit I am prepared to be annoyed by the show. We’ll see how it goes. :)

  • Andrea Henke October 1,

    I found out that Dollar Tree sells the Sunday paper for $1 (our local paper is $2 for the Sunday paper, so that’s half off)! I’ve also tried dumpster diving and it isn’t a bad way to go.

    • Ruth October 2,

      You are braver than me! :-) I think I need to check out the Dollar Tree today! Thanks for the tip.

      • Denise October 4,

        I think I’ll have to check my local dollar tree as well! However, we do have people that sell Sunday papers at major intersections for .99 cents as well on Sundays.

        • Ruth October 4,

          I stopped into Dollar General after church on Sunday to check it out and they were all out–the gal said they sell out as soon as they open! :-)

  • Tammy October 2,


    I am new to this whole thing. Watching the show makes me want to do couponing, my husband hates the fact that people hoard all that food and whatnot he doesn’t understand why hoard it then go out and buy more. He said that if I start the couponing that I must not become like them! (Which I was not planning on!)

    My major question is this: I make my food from scratch, is there way to do coupons and still be able to do food by scratch? I see coupons all the time but they are for things I would never buy so I wonder if there are coupons out there that I can actually use! Making things from scratch has actually helped us save on a lot of money. Now, I would like to continue that with coupons.

    Any hints or ideas ladies?

    • Andrea Henke October 3,

      I know it’s hard to find coupons for staples such as milk, eggs, flour, etc, but it isn’t impossible. I’m trying to do the low-carb diet, so I don’t want to eat a lot of packaged items, but I still get meat and produce on sale, use my CVS Extra Care Bucks to buy eggs and dairy, and get toiletries for free from Rite Aid and Walgreens. Good for you for taking the time to make food from scratch. It’s definitely better for you, easier on your pocketbook, and tastes better too!

    • Denise October 4,

      I’ve seen a lot of coupons for flour in my area. I’m not sure where you live but, I live in southeastern WI. Occasionally I also see coupons for lower prices on produce as well. Sometimes I’ve also found coupons for different seasonings. I’m not sure if your store does this but, the store i shop at also does deals where if you buy certain cereals you get $9-$10 or your pruchase or each box at $1.88 or something like that (plus stacking coupons on the sale) then almost always a coupon for free milk, and occasionally they’ll add a free dozen eggs. Also stores like Target and family dollar will sometimes have egg cupons as well. I hope this helps a little. :)

      • Ruth October 4,

        Sounds like you have some great sales & coupons in your area Denise! Lucky you! :-)

    • Ruth October 4,

      Making food from scratch is a GREAT way to save Tammy! Just watch for sales on the items you use, and then stock up when you see things at a great price, or if you do happen to find a coupon. Even if you want to stick to an all natural or homemade diet & can’t find as many coupons for food, you can focus more on finding great coupon deals on the other things your family needs, like toiletries & paper goods.

  • Games September 17,

    Hi there, always i used to check blog posts here early in the morning, since i love to
    learn more and more.


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