About WUC


Welcome to WeUseCoupons – a site that helps people all over the country connect, save and learn about coupons. Our mission is to help you save money so that you can pay down your debt and live a rich life!!

I’m Nathan. I’m a 29 year old dude from Cincinnati who is passionate about coupons! Who would have ever thought that little old me would be passionate about little pieces of paper?! I didn’t win the lottery, I drive a 5 year old paid off car, and I’m no millionaire. I’m a regular Joe with a wife and toddler who is passionate about giving them all that I can. I am a brother to 3, and am blessed to have the most loving parents a guy could ever ask for. I am Mr.Coupon, and yes I’m proud to be called that! I consider myself one of the luckiest people on the earth! I get to talk about and write about something I LOVE: helping people save money.

 

I grew up on thrift stores and garage sales. My family was a military family and with 4 children my mom had to be savvy. I learned about frugality early in life. But like many kids, when I went off to college, credit was easy and swiping was even easier. After I graduated I married the girl of my dreams and in 2007 we combined our finances we together had over $80,000 in debt. I was crushed. I felt like a failure. My life screamed success, but my wallet said loser.

My wife and I decided in 2007 to do something crazy, to do something so radical that fewer than 20% of the country even can stick to1.

We decided to create a budget. We started cutting back. We sold one of our cars nearly at a loss, just to get rid of the payment. We also started a grocery budget. Now when you actually set a grocery budget, (and stick to it) you naturally look for ways to stretch it. We initially went all generic. That was easy. But one Wednesday (yes I do remember the day), my wife was watching the Food Network, I was reading in the living room and casually looking at the TV. I don’t remember the lady’s name, but what I do remember is glancing up at the TV and catching her check out. It was a surreal experience. My mouth hit the floor. I couldn’t believe that she only paid $4 for all those groceries. The first words out of my mouth were ‘how’?!

I immediately jumped online and spent hours and hours searching. I stumbled over what few sites existed at the time and found a few message boards (many were fee based!). I quickly realized that coupons weren’t rocket science. It was a matter of timing, knowledge and organization. I was so excited, but alas it was Wednesday!! In my area coupons didn’t come out until Sunday. I had to wait 4 days to get my hands on those bad boys. Well Sunday rolled around and I called my local Walmart to see when the paper arrived. (Yea I’m intense). They informed me that they were delivered at 5am, so I jump in my car and arrived at 5:15am. I got just one paper and was so excited I couldn’t sleep! I raced home and clipped my coupons because that week toothpaste was going to be free at Kroger!

After clipping coupons for a few weeks, I started to realize something.

Why would I pay full price tomorrow, when it’s free or cheap today? Why not buy 10 and stock up?

So that week, I purchased 3 newspapers and got three free deodorants!

Today as you probably have seen from our episodes on TLC’s Extreme Couponing and our videos on YouTube, we have a large stockpile. But our stockpile isn’t there to gauke at, it’s there to ensure that we pay as little as we possibly can, for items that we will consume. Years later, I’m so happy to report that currently (Sept 2011) I only have $15,000 of debt remaining to pay off (not including the house). I still, years later, hold onto this motto: Why would I pay full price tomorrow, when it’s free or cheap today?

Here is a short video about Mr.Coupon:

WeUseCoupons actually started at my parents urging believe it or not! I was couponing and teaching free coupon classes in my area and many of the people in my classes asked where they could get reliable information. I thought to myself, why not continue to connect with these people on a website?! I started WeUseCoupons in July of 2008 and it’s been a wild ride ever since. I am passionate about giving people access to completely FREE information. We have never ever charged for anything on WUC, and will continue to never offer any form of paid membership. I feel strongly that many of the people who need to learn about couponing often times can’t afford to learn. My wife grew up on food stamps. We understand that coupons can be life giving if used correctly and I hope that WeUseCoupons enables you to change the way you live, because the people on this site have changed my life.

When I’m not clipping coupons, shopping, working on code, filming a video or blogging, I enjoy spending time with my wonderful family! Lacy and Hannah are my true passions in life! Often times you will see me post about our Frugal Friday Dates that my wife and I indulge in nearly every Friday evening! I also enjoy politics, photography, playing dress up with Hannah and the occasional board game!

In March of 2010, Kim became the general administrator of WeUseCoupons! Kim is amazing and inspiring and has become a great friend. She is a huge part of what makes WUC tick! Here is more about Kim:

I was one of those couponers that started out years and years ago that was determined to save money so I could travel. I was still single at the time and would buy the newspaper to clip the coupons I would need. I would leave them on the table, then the coupons got shifted to another table, then moved to the counter, and eventually shoved into a drawer in the kitchen. You know that drawer: the catch-all drawer. The one when company pops over and yKim and Robertou go to fix some drinks that you sweep everything into. I usually found the coupons 9 months later, long past the expiration, when I was digging around in the drawer looking for a battery or something.

Fast forward to 2004, I was newly married with a ten year old stepson. We had to save money because this ten year old was starting to eat us out of house and home. I would get up every Saturday morning at 6 am to go to the local WalMart to look for marked down meats. I was so proud when I saved $10- $15 off our grocery bill.

I can remember calling my husband as I wheeled out a cart load of groceries saying, ‘I ONLY spent $150 this week!!!” I was so proud!

In 2007, my self-employed husband started having a decline in work. At one time, he made quite a bit more than I did at my teaching job but when the economy crashed, people stopped building homes and stopped wanting custom showers; they stopped wanting new countertops and new flooring. We eventually dropped to one income…mine. We were more than strapped for cash. We had a new-to-us home that was going into foreclosure, a son in private school, and constant calls from credit agencies wanting money.

Then I truly found couponing. Couponing became a way of life.

It became another job and supplemented that lost income. We came out of foreclosure, paid off one of the cars, paid down our debt, and are looking at a much brighter future…all because of couponing. The economy started turning around but the couponing continued to motivate us to save money. We finally are able to give back to others and are able to help local community agencies. Now our grocery bill rarely goes over $40-$50 for a week, and THAT is something to be proud of.

We found WeUseCoupons several years ago and fell in love. Couponing became more than just saving money and giving back to the community. For us, WeUseCoupons became a place to share shopping trips, find great deals, discuss best scenarios, and so much more. Being a part of WeUseCoupons is like having a whole new extended family. We can have the best laid plans for our shopping trips to walk into a store to discover shelves out of stock, products not carried in a particular store, coupons beeping, and a host of other mishaps. Having a family to come “hoKim Brownme” to at WeUseCoupons that understood those types of trips, that helped rebuild a different scenario, and encouraged us for our next couponing adventure only motivated us even more. We have developed online friendships that went beyond couponing to discussing the latest with our children, the fact that the Yankees ARE the best baseball team, my favorite recipes, holiday gift ideas, and so much more.

WeUseCoupons has changed our lives not only financially but personally. We love saving money and couponing but we also love the lasting friendships we have developed with our online family at WUC.

*Kim’s photos courtesy of Fancy Face Photography.

1). http://www.usatoday.com/money/perfi/basics/2005-04-21-financial-diet-making-a-budget_x.htm