As part of my Large filing box, I keep folders for each store I frequent. Inside you will find any information on store cards, web-site and login information, ads and/or price sheets. I do this for a couple reasons.
First, I was sick of having a pile of ads on my desk. Most of them were outdated and I never could find the one I wanted to look at. Plus it was awful to look at!
Second, it is nice to have the ad to refer to throughout the week it describes. I like to take any ad I'm going to price match from in to Wal-mart with me. Having them organized this way guarantees I can find the ad quickly when I need it.
Lastly, when a new ad comes all I have to do is trade the old one for the new and throw the old away. No outdated ads at my house!
So, when a new ad comes I will generally scan through and make note of any deals that catch my eye in my notebook. Then, I place the new ad in its folder and the old ad goes in the garbage (I always check the old ad for coupons that may be clipped and added to my collection before tossing).
Whenever I find a new rebate opportunity I clip/print it and place the form in my REBATE folder, found in my Large File box. I make sure to list in my Spreadsheet the rebate specifics and expiration date.
I keep a running list of products I want to purchase for rebate offers in my notebook. I also search for a coupon and/or sale to match with the rebate for more savings.
As I buy the product and assemble the rebate I copy everything I send off and keep a copy in my rebate folder. You have to pay special attention to the requirements on each rebate. Each one is slightly different and I try to follow the instructions to the letter. When the check comes I move my copy to a received section of the folder so I know not to try and claim a rebate I've already received.
I've mentioned my notebook a couple of times in this post. In the final edition of this series I'll talk about the notebook, how I put my deals together, and how I shop with coupons.