Before you start building your stockpile, you should read these stockpile secrets. These secrets are from my own experience building my personal stockpile and research. I have broken this article down into 6 secrets that will help you with any stage you are at with your stockpile.
I have had my stockpile for over 4 years now! The number one thing to always remember about a stockpile is it is not used as a collection. Minimalist would agree with me that collections cost people money and take up valuable space. Stockpiles are supposed to act as a money saver rather than a money waster. You need to be smart and plan out your stockpile to help you in a crunch.
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Stockpile Secrets 1: Coupons
When people see my stockpile they are surprised I have one and ask why? My answer is why not? I have not paid full price for any type of beauty or cleaning product since I started stockpiling four years ago. The way I built my stockpile was by couponing and it’s very simple. Cut or print out your coupon, find a deal where the item is on sale, and see if you can match any other deals with it. Stores like Target or CVS have additional savings on the same item and can bring the price down even lower. I am lucky to have a grocery store near me that will double any coupon under $.99 or less. This is amazing for coupons that have $.75 off one product because I can get it doubled for $1.50 off! Incredible savings that add up quickly.
I am no means an extreme couponer! I am smart with the way I use coupons. Coupons should never make you buy something you do not need. As we adapt to more of a minimalist lifestyle, I do not even bother with my time to cut out coupons I will not use. Even if I could get them for free or make money off of those products, they will just take up space and go unused. Use coupons to cut down the price of everyday household items that you use FREQUENTLY.
The best-kept secret: Buy one get one free coupons are your stockpiles best friend
Stockpile Secrets 2: Building for less than $5-$10 a week
Many of the pins I see are how to build your stockpile for an extra $5 to $10 a week. If you do not want to waste your time cutting out coupons, this could be the path you take to build your emergency stockpile. For an extra $5 a week on your groceries, I would start with what you go through the most in your house. What are you always replacing? Maybe you spend an extra $5 on toilet paper the first week. The second week you notice you go through tissues or paper towel more frequently than you would like to purchase it. Taking an extra $5 or $10 a week can get your stockpile built up fairly quickly.
The best-kept secret: An extra $5.00 on your grocery budget will save you money in the long
Stockpile Secrets 3: Stockpile Organization
If you search Pinterest there are so many different ways to organize a stockpile. For my stockpile, I use Sterilite 4 Shelf Units. They are the perfect size for a basement and are very sturdy. I have four shelving units in my basement that I have pushed together on a back wall. I have all of my shampoo and conditioner on one shelf. Soaps and other hair products on another shelf. Another one of my shelving units I have my gift stockpile which has candles, picture frames, and free items from Victoria Secret amongst other discounted items.
Some people on Pinterest have come up with some really creative organizational strategies for their stockpiles. Take an everyday soda pop 12 pack package and fill it with soup cans. For smaller items like razors or toothbrushes, I like to use small baskets on my shelf or use Sterilite 3-Drawer Organizers with labels on the outside of what is inside. Some people I have seen on shows like Extreme Couponing have made their stockpile area look and feel like a grocery store. If you are headed that route for your stockpile or you just prefer the organization of your items, a lot of people use pegboard with hooks and hang up smaller items.
The best-kept secret: Sterilite 4 Shelf Units
Stockpile Secrets 4: Unique Stockpiles
I have come across unique stockpiles like baby products, gifts, and laundry soaps. Currently, I have a gift stockpile and will be starting a baby stockpile when we plan for our first child. Laundry stockpiles are good for people who have big families.
My gift stockpile did not cost a lot of extra money to get started. I would never make a special trip out to the store to buy things for my gift stockpile. If I was already out shopping and came across an amazing sale or an item on clearance I would pick it up. I would have a rule for not adding a gift to the pile if it was over $5. I use my gift stockpile when I need a filler for another gift or I need a hostess gift for a party that I am headed too.
Baby stockpiles are huge and can save a lot of money! When you have your first baby shower you will get a variety of baby products and sizes. You will need to keep all of your items organized. If you plan on using disposable diapers for your baby than start stocking up on diapers when you go grocery shopping before you have your child. This does two things. The first thing it does is it allows you to stock up on different size diapers. The second thing it does is it gets your budget used to paying for them until your child is potty trained.
The best-kept secret: a gift stockpile
Stockpile Secrets 5: When is enough, enough
Extreme couponers or extreme stockpile builders, might not agree with this secret of stockpiling. There is a limit to your stockpile! There will come a point when enough is enough. When is that you say? It’s when you have a ridiculous amount of toothpaste or shaving cream that will sit on your shelves for longer than two years. If you have a large family I can see how going through these items would be faster than others. There is a limit to how many you will need for two years. At that point, it is just taking up space or will end up in the trash! #NotSavvy
If you are at the point where you are looking for more space to house your stockpile then you have enough. I used to watch Extreme Couponing all the time and was so jealous of the inventory. Now, living in my own house I have just enough of what I need to save money. I remember watching episodes and people had so much inventory they would use their oven for storage. CRAZY! Limit yourself to a certain area of your house. Whether that is a section in the garage, pantry, basement, or linen closet. When you start making space in other areas of your house, you know you have too much.
The best-kept secret: there is a limit to your stockpile
Stockpile Secrets 6: Putting your stockpile to good use
Why keep all of the love of your free items to yourself? Give and help others! Find a local shelter to donate items too. Schools or churches have drives different times of the year that can benefit from your products. If you have neighbors that are going through a tough time or a family member headed off to college or having a baby, share the wealth! The deals are not going to stop. You will be able to replenish your supply and save money doing so. Make good use of your stockpile for people who are in need.
The best-kept secret: share your wealth
What stockpile secrets do you have?
How do you manage and organize your stockpile?
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