Extreme Couponing – And Why I Will Not Be On The Show

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So I have not talked much about the topic of Extreme Couponing specifically the show on TLC. You know the saying if you have nothing nice to say at all do not say anything then don’t – I have been utilizing it well with this topic 😉

Today is the 2nd time I have been approached by TLC to be on the show as an “Extreme Couponer” — but if they knew anything about my site they would know that I am not an extreme couponer —it is just not how I roll. I know it works for some — but I try and teach my awesome readers different tools like frugal recipes and budget tips to save money

Anyways I decided to make a short little video about it all

Enjoy!

Make sure to pre-order Budget Savvy Diva’s Book HERE

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  • Amy

    I completely agree with you on “Extreme Couponing” I tell everyone I’ve always been an “extreme couponer” for at least 15 years! I match up the sales with the coupons, and thats about all I try to buy. I try new products all the time. I do not understand how or why you would want to do the “new” “extreme couponing.” I still shop the same way – matching sales and coupons.

    Thank you for all your help here! Love your site!! 🙂

  • Autumn Cakes

    Hi,
    I am glad you are not crossing over to the “dark side” to be on that crazy show…I hate that the people make huge stock piles of food and non perishables!

  • Lori

    Your book sounds awesome!! I agree no one needs that much hot sauce or ramen noodles !! lol You made me laugh because my sister and I say the same thing ,we are only jealous of the toilet paper and detergent .

  • sally

    Thanks for the video. You do post more than just couponing deals, and I like that. I don’t think that I’m an extreme couponer, but if something is free or cheap, I do buy enough so that I am not spending that extra money for the same product, later on, without a deal. I think it all comes down to the person, but I think that the TLC show portrays couponing in a bad way, because of the way that I have seen people disrespect their family members, and disrespecting couponers in general by using coupons that are illegal. Also, what they don’t show is that many of these people have saved up their free item coupons(from the manufacturer or illegal or credits for changing prescriptions from one pharmacy to another) to get stuff for free, and I wish they would share that, to make it realistic. If they are going to be on the show, they should be teaching it is The Learning Channel , after all!

  • Kristen S

    I thought Extreme Couponing was the bomb until I figured out it isn’t reality and special rules are set up for those people that not the everyday couponer would get. The only thing I do still like about the show, yet I don’t really watch it, is that all the food goes to places for people who really need it.

  • Brittany J.

    I agree with you completely 100%!! I knew someone that would buy anything that was on sale and it was kinda pointless unless you know you are going to use ALL of it. Such as myself, I can even get bar-b-que sauce on sale & I’m able to get a stock pile of it[only because we use about a bottle a week!]. Then that is a different story, but to get it and then resale it is really shameful!! I just got 14 bottles of Dawn dish soap, but that’s because I plan on GIVING some away. I know I don’t NEED that many, but I do plan on helping people out that can’t afford good products as well! I wish more people were willing to help others & just like you!!

    • Tiffany B

      I couldn’t have said this better myself! I do coupon quite a bit but I rarely (if ever) buy anything that myself or my family will not use. Recently I did get about 12 diabetic testers for free and I don’t even have diabetes but when I got them, I did it with every intention of giving them to the local community center or family members that do have diabetes. I do have somewhat of a stockpile but it’s on things that we use a lot of like toothpaste, shampoos, laundry detergent (although I’ll admit, I do probably have more than we would use in a year lol), deodorants, body washes, makeup etc.. but with that being said, I give a lot of the stuff as christmas presents or just give it away to help. Recently my husband’s grandfather passed away and his whole family was staying at his grandmother’s house. First of all, the death was very unexpected and sudden and secondly, she is on a fixed income. I was able to bring tons of laundry soap, shampoo, toilet paper, paper towels etc.. All the stuff that a large group of people go through a lot of but that no one really thinks about. :o)

  • Nealla St Clair

    I’ve always thought of extreme couponers as hoarders. If they were taking most of it to the food bank or other charities instead of filling their garages and bedrooms, I might find it more attractive. If they really wanted to save money, maybe they could deduct their charitable contributions on their Form 1040 and get an even larger savings…..

  • Kim T.

    I watch that show to see how many broken rules I can catch, especially if they are in a store I’m familiar with.
    Is TLC asking you to show a normal shopping trip? If so, I think it would be great to have someone who refuses to break the rules on the show. It would show people what honest couponing looks like. Just my opinion because the wrong way to coupon has been shown so often.

  • Barbara Decker Samples

    I get so sick of people saying I need to be on that show just because I might use 15 or 20 coupons! No one needs to stock up to feed an army for 10 years! That show has ruined it for everyone who has always looked for bargains and used coupons! I mean really saying if you don’t have a coupon you won’t buy it? It gives the wrong impression of anyone who used any coupons! I use my head (that lump 3 feet above my behind)! If I can get the same quality product cheaper without a coupon than a name brand with a coupon then guess what!? I buy the product without a coupon! I have had people ask me about meat coupons. Yes they are out there but…… I know my local store reduces their meat on Mon. through Wed. because of the new meat coming in on Wed! I fill my freezer like this! Look for sales on stuff you use all the time! Sorry about the rant but I HATE HATE HATE HATE that show! Our coupons have went from $1 to .50 and now we are lucky to get .25 coupons on products that were $1 off! Shelf clearers should be shot in the behind with a pellet rifle! LOL Ok I am done for now!

    • genie

      I have to agree with you. I hate when i try to get a couple of things on sale with my coupons and you go and the shelfs are empty or a really good coupon comes out and its only been like 2 minutes since it posted and they are out. because they are using several computers so they can get more than there share.

  • mary

    Because of the show Extreme Couponing manufacturers have now cut the value of the coupons they offer. Where once they would offer $1 coupons now those are at best .50. I use coupons, but only for products I would normally buy anyways. And if you know your prices and your sales, you wait until the item you want to purchase goes on sale, then maximize by adding in the coupons. I learned from the older generation how to be frugal and how to stretch meals that are both healthy and economical.
    Extreme couponing hurts the regular customers who may want 1 or 2 of the sale items only to find some glutton has taken the whole shelf!

  • susan

    Hi :),
    I am so happy to hear that you wont accept their invite. I personally know that sometimes you can walk out of the store with hundreds of dollars of items for just a few dollars BUT that is a very rare occasion. I honestly watched that show the 1st season a whole 3 times. That was it. It drove me batty how most of them would ‘horde’ items or clear shelves. There is no reason for that! I think you are absolutely correct and right on all you said. You would think they would pay more attention to whom they invite for the show and the stores would watch what they do FOR the show. Congrats on the book and thank you for all your hard work.

  • Gloria N

    I totally agree. I’ve told many ladies new to couponing that the show isn’t real. The people buy 30 to 40 or more of one thing. I do not know of a store around my area (MI) that let you use more than 3 or 4 coupons on one item. Or you have a ton of multi transactions. Just not REAL. I appreicate you not bothering with the show. Good luck with your book and I’ll be looking for it in January.

  • Alexandra

    I completely agree with you! I started using coupons when I moved out on my own a few years ago and always liked to save a few dollars here and there and when the show came out of course I though I would give it a go and I honestly think I spent more money on newspapers and stuff than I saved. The only “big” couponing trip I ever really had was getting 50 bottles of sobe life water for under 4 dollars (just tax) and the cashier was so rude and so was management I think that since the show came out it has really made companies slow down on giving out high value coupons and it has made stores change their coupon policies drastically. I am totally in love with your site and how it’s stuff that can actually be done by the everyday mom or dad or anyone for that matter and I think you do it in a classy not over the top way and I have alot of respect for you standing up and saying no to doing the show. Can’t wait to get the book when it comes out I’ll definately be buying more than one copy just sad it won’t be out before Christmas.

  • Danielle Stewart

    I get very frustrated with the extreme couponers because the only way they get all of their deals is to stockpile items that they will never be able to use in a lifetime. Not only do they need to store their stockpile, but by the time they get to the things in the back, the items are expired, so either they use old stuff or they throw it away. Here we have people in America that can’t afford to feed their families, and companies have to continue to raise their prices because the couponers get 50+ cans of vegetables for $2.00 and then don’t even use them. I feel very strongly about wasting 🙁

  • Karen

    I agree and totally support your position regarding TLC’s Extreme Couponing show. When I began watching it over a year ago, I had no idea about coupon fraud,and many of the other behaviors that were later disclosed,ie: cashiers/stores on the”take” or part of the show. They failed to show people using coupon clipping services, etc. which, if you ask me honestly, would negate your savings because you’re paying out money for coupons! No one admitted and figured it into the true costs related to the shopping trip/groceries.
    We do stock pile nonperishables,(but nothing like on that show), but only because within the past year I’ve become disabled and the budget is tight!
    Your site is realistic and informative, love the recipes too!! You’ve taught me alot, Thank YOU Sarah!! I look forward to your book! Best of Luck and Success!

  • Natalie

    I am constantly (like everytime I shop) asked if I’m an “extreme couponer”…. my reply is, “No, not extreme. Extreme makes it look like you can get $1000 worth of groceries for $10, which is realistically, not possible. I get, at most, about 4 of any one thing, and we match the coupons with the sales and save a lot, but I’ve never walked out with all my groceries for free.” I think the show gives coupon people a bad name & portrays us as crazy, greedy people. I think it’s done more harm than good. Next show will be “How to cheat on your wife without getting caught.” I don’t really think anything TLC does is helpful… they are exploitive & only interested in sensationalism. You keep doing what you do! And good for you for turning them down!

  • Karen Sch

    I think you did the right thing! That show misleads people into thinking they can go into store and start getting tons of stuff for free. While we all do get stuff free it is never on that scale and frankly, who would want it to be!? My husband and I get 4 newspapers every week and that is it. We take anything we feel we aren’t going to need (if its free or super cheap) to the Ronald McDonald House. They love getting stuff there because not many people think to donate there. I seriously don’t understand why anyone would even want 500 rolls of toilet paper, or 500 tubes of toothpaste!? I would much rather have the space in my house than a enormous stockpile of products that are going to go bad anyway. I thank you for saying no and explaining to people why. I hope that by seeing your post that new people will realize that its about saving in different ways and not just by couponing. You money saving recipes and Gluten free tips are always fabulous! Thanks for all you do and setting an excellent example for others!

  • MzChynna Riley

    I hate the show because I think that it seems that it is promoting greed in a NICE way…..Like you said OK you have all that mustard!!! But what about the person that has not eaten in days…What is your point of stocking all this stuff and saving money when you are not going to help anyone with it….

  • Trixie

    I totally agree with the others here, the value of the coupons that we have always used in my family has decreased significantly because of the hoarders – oops, did I say that out loud? – I mean, couponers. Not only has the face value been reduced but the expiration dates are accelerated as well. I’ve gotten to the point that I rarely even use coupons any more anyway, though because I’ve started making almost everything we eat from scratch and there just aren’t that many coupons out there for pantry staples anymore.

  • Ashley

    I agree with you on the Extreme Couponing. I find it crazy how people do all that crazy stuff to get the coupons and yet done even eat or use the items. I think it gives tons of bad hope to people that feel they can do it and then find out that they cant or the stores they go to don’t be so easy as the other stores are. I think the only thing you should stock up on is like toilet paper and detergent. I love your site and all the things you post. I constantly check your page during the day and cant wait for your book to get here!! It also helps that your cat is so adorable and reminds me of my own.

  • Tammy

    I STOPPED couponing because of that show. I feel guilty having stacks and stacks of inserts my neighbors leave me and I don’t look through them at all. I just do the sales now because of all the stupid rules that were broken in that show and all the eyerolls and sighs I kept getting.

  • Kimberly

    There are a lot of good points all ready made here; value of coupons, shelf clearers, greed, constant change in coupon policy, etc. They actually have people who will follow you around in some stores when you walk in with your notebook of coupons to make sure you are NOT a shelf clearer. I have learned from being poor how to use coupons and how to spread that dollar out as fas as I can get it to reach. I love to hear about new ideas as long as they are helpful!!
    I am jealous of the stock piles of TP and always tying to figure that one out! However, I do tend to make my own deterent now adays so not so jealous there. I do take advantage of the Dawn (its a miracle in a bottle,seriously) but my goal is to make sure I can save at least 20 a week from my budget and the better I do then kudos for me. No I dont necessarily shop tradionally anymore, I did just buy 8 bottles of hunts ketchup at 2 for a buck but I am thinking that should get us through the winter.
    I also am not fortunate enough to live where there are store like Publix, Piggly wiggly etc that seem to get advertised for doubling and tripling the coupons so I have to do what I can with what I have available.
    Yes, the show blows everything out of proportion you have to have common knowlegde to know you can only do what you can and not what you see on TV.
    But if you ever figure out that TP thing help a girl or two out and share would ya!!lol
    good luck with the book, cant wait!

  • Kristi D.

    Completely agree with you! Thank you for not jumping on the bandwagon so to speak and promote a show that it essentially false! I like to coupon, but yes it is within reason and sometimes (gasp) I too grocery shop without coupons! I can’t even watch that show because it just makes me so mad. I’m sitting there going “no you can’t use that coupon on those!” It is just wrong to promote that, and it only serves to mislead the public and yup the next thing you know Walmart and other stores are getting ripped off because people think this is OK. And it’s not. I’m annoyed that Walmart is making it more difficult for honest couponers (not really on board with the new “internal” policy), but yes I understand how this has gotten so out of control. Anyway, I love your site you promote the reality of couponing, cooking at home, and getting great deals. We appreciate you keeping it real girl!

  • Arlene

    I agree with you 100%. The extreme couponers have ruined it for everyone else. They act like the zombies are coming and they must buy every item with a coupon and stockpile it in their basement before the zombies arrive!

    I am so tired of sale items being bought by crazed women with binders who buy 20 of each item. When the travel in packs nothing is left behind. The only time it is acceptable is if you are filling a food pantry or shelter. 99.99% of the people are not doing that.

    Can’t wait for your book, you are awesome!

  • Todd

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I was also approached and declined. I wanted to show how we donate many of the items we get and they were not interested. Juts wanted to see a huge stockpile.

  • Tomi

    I love TLC…but that show makes me cry. I never understood how they can get all of those coupons for some of these items. I am excited to get a good amount off of Tide to be honest. I always though if it was that easy to get all of those coupons that our local food banks would be well stocked…Good for you for standing up for what you believe in and I am looking forward to your book.

  • Amanda

    I’m so happy you aren’t selling out to the show! The show has created headaches for peoplle who use coupons – in a non-extreme way! I would say that I’ve always used coupons and I have always stockpiled non-perishable items (not ANYTHING like on the show!) Last year I would say that I used coupons a lot more until I realized that my pantry was filled with marshmallows, Stove Top and instant coffee packets and had no clue what to make for dinner!! Now I just coupon mostly for personal hygiene products. Our family has moved to eating non-processed foods which is much cheaper anyways! And healthier! 🙂 Good for you for sticking to what you believe and saying no. With the opportunity to be on TV I think some people would have found it hard to say no! Shows you have integrity! 🙂

  • Diane Mahle

    I agree with you. If they would do a normal shopping trip that would be awesome. I get funny looks sometimes because I walk in with my binder and walk out with $200 worth of groceries for $150 LOL. I even got accused of being an extreme couponer because I was cutting coupons and I wanted a small stockpile to last my family of 5 the summer (my husband’s union job doesn’t work the summer 3-4 months). I think the people that commit coupon fraud are just ruining it all for us honest couponers. yes I do watch the show but it’s for pure entertainment only. The only thing I can say good about Extreme Couponing is got me to couponing in the first place.

  • nicole sellers

    I agree with you, and for one I am happy you are not doing the show. I hear nothing good about it. I was so excited when it came out and I really thought that it would show me how to be a better couponer. It taught me nothing!!! I then stumbled upon your facebook page and have been a follower since. I love your site and visit daily! Thank You for all your helpful tips and I love the recipes!! I share them often with my friends!! 🙂

  • Rose

    I agree nobody needs 40 bottles of mustard and it leaves a bad taste in others mouthes when you clear a shelf also saying “well you should have got here before me”, well other people do have stuff to do like take care of their children. Now admittedly I did buy 10 bags of pampers diapers that I had coupons for, but I have small children that I will use those up with and they have sensitve skin and that is the only brand they can use.

  • Awesome Shopper Amber

    I agree with every single post/reply i have seen here. I have been couponing for years, never to the extreme level. Once I started watching this show, I became disgusted. They don’t tell you that they are actually spending money for a lot of their coupons. And most stores won’t take more than 4 of the same coupon. However, Target’s coupon website is my favorite thing in the whole world. You can combine your manufacturer coupon from the paper and a target coupon to maximize your savings. I do have a LOT of Dawn ( that stuff is good for so many uses, such as making your own laundry soap to flea bathing your cat) and shampoo has always been one of my vices, so when I see a good sale I take advantage. I never break rules and always try to get in a line with no other customers (because they always roll their eyes LOL) and not once have I done more than one transaction in one visit. Couponing and saving so much money is fun, it’s kindof like a rush, but I am by no means a shelf clearer or hoarder. I have always loved bath and beauty products, so the coupons have just fed into that habit 🙂 I also never buy more than 3 papers. It is a fun little challenge to see what coupons you can find. I AM SO GLAD you are not going to be on the show and that you explain to us why. You have totally earned my respect (like you didnt already have it LOL) for your stance. Good luck to you in all of your thrifty endeavors, and I can’t wait to read your book! Kiss Watson Hello from Me and my SpazKitty :-*

  • Melissa V

    I have a different opinion on this topic. I do coupon, not sure if i would be considered “extreme couponing” but I do get several of one item (enough for about 6 months of stock for my household). If i need to do a few transactions, I do. I generally save 70-90% off my grocery bills. I donate a lot of the things i can get extra of that i won’t need, as well as give it away to friends and family. I just really believe the show portrays couponing in a bad way, and its not. Its being smart about what is being offered to you. The economy the way it is now, I will take any extra bit of money saved that I can get. NICE couponers are not shelf cleaners, we don’t do illegal transactions using fake coupons. WE support our families. Couponing has enabled me to be a stay at home mom to by sweet baby boy who is now 9 months old, which is something most moms don’t get to do. I will take extreme couponing any day to stay home with my baby than work away from home and lose this time i have with him while he is young.

  • Karen

    The biggest problem I have about the Extreme Coupon movement is that the rules are changed and not based in reality for everyone. Seems like most folks have to follow the rules…except when your on tv. The only coupons I buy are the ones that are in the newspapers. I don’t buy from clipping services. I have used coupons for almost 30 years and have shared my bargains with family and friends through the years. I have a large pantry but I try to buy only the things I will use because if your wasting food it just isn’t a bargain. I live 18 miles from town so I do buy things that will keep me from running to the store so often. Todays fuel prices make me a smarter shopper all the way around.

  • Debbi

    Well said!
    We live in a tiny, tiny home and have no room to put that much stuff! LOL
    So I am very careful with what I buy and am mindful of where it can be stored. Last year, I got a great deal on tissues and got about 30 boxes for free and that is what is under our bed. But that was about as extreme as I can get. Mostly my stockpile has about 4 or 5 of each item, like ketchup or spag sauce. Stuff that we use on a reg basis and can be rotated. I don’t have a basement or garage to store things so I have to be pretty choosy! Yet, I still get items free or almost free. I just don’t go hog wild. Moderation is the key! I wouldn’t go on that show unless they offered to buy me a bigger home. LOL Then I might think about it. 😉

  • Robyn

    I agree. I love this site and a few others. I don’t buy what I don’t need or use. Now sometimes near expiration date (a month or 2 before) if I have items I won’t get to use I give them to the homeless shelter. But I do not buy 40 bottles of something because I know I won’t use that many. And with the money I have saved I have been able to go back and forth to California for my favorite band. Thanks for giving us tips and that you do and keep up the good work.

  • Yvonne

    I am a coupon shopper, but not extreme. I have a binder I can neatly keep coupons I use, and only those. I get all kinds of looks at stores but I am only looking to save a few dollars so I can buy food I probably would not be able to get otherwise. things such as more fresh fruits and veges or a little extra meat. People look at me like I must be an extreme couponer. I like to refer to myself as an organized shopper.