Thursday, January 26, 2012
7 News Features: The Coupon Kid
Tonight, the story of a teenager who is saving her family thousands of dollars by cutting out coupons. 7's Carmel Cafiero introduces us to "The Coupon Kid."
WSVN -- Fourteen-year-old Salihah Muhammad is a lean, green, money saving machine.
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "I go online, cut out Sunday paper coupons."
Salihah got into "couponing" after watching a cable TV show, and now, she helps her family save hundreds of dollars every time they shop.
Carmel Cafiero: "How much work does it take? You have to prepare, obviously."
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Well, it takes me eight hours on the weekends, and when I have time on the weekdays, usually two to four hours."
Salihah's efforts have been a big help to her big family.
She's one of nine children. Her dad is a public school teacher, and her mom is at home with a newborn.
Carmel Cafiero: "What difference has her couponing made for your family?"
Tanice Jackson, Proud Mom: "It's been a significant difference. There's certain items that she's able to amass, that we don't have to purchase anymore."
The family's stocked shelves tell the tale.
They're bursting with detergent, pasta, cereal, and lots of diapers.
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Back here, we have the stash full of diapers, the diaper stash. Don, don, don!"
She started couponing last summer.
Tanice Jackson, Proud Mom: "Salihah has saved us thousands, I would say maybe over $3,000."
Salihah says not all stores are willing to deal with her couponing, but she says her Publix store in Plantation is always pleased to see her, list and coupons in hand.
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "My target is to not spend anything out-of-pocket."
Carmel Cafiero: "So you want to get all of those items, and not have to pay anything?"
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Nothing at all."
Carmel Cafiero: "OK, let's see you do it. Go to town."
One of Salihah's strategies: add a coupon to a buy one, get one free deal and really save.
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "The I Can't Believe It's Not Butter is on sale for $3.69 for two. I have two $1 off coupons, making it only $1.69 for two."
But Salihah says she really racks up deals when she targets items where her coupon savings exceeds the cost of the item.
Carmel Cafiero: "So they're going to pay you to take these? How does that work?"
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Yeah. OK, these are regular price for 97 cents, and I have a $1 off Publix coupon, and a 50 cent off manufacturer."
Carmel Cafiero: "So you're going to make money?"
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Yeah, make 53 cents on every one I get."
The moment of truth arrives at the checkout register.
Her purchases totaled $188.96.
Publix Employee: "Do you have any coupons today?"
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Yes, I have coupons."
And that's when the fun begins, because she doesn't want to pay anything for all that stuff.
Carmel Cafiero: "Do you get nervous when you're watching?"
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Yes."
Carmel Cafiero: "How's she doing?"
Publix Employee: "She's doing good, it's coming down."
Salihah just missed her mark, but she was close.
Two full carts, nearly $200 in groceries, and the final bill: less than $3.
Publix Employee: "2.93. You did good."
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "Thank you."
The checkout line is not the only place young Salihah does good. She donates extra items to her church for needy families and also teaches couponing classes.
Tanice Jackson, Proud Mom: "It's something that she would like to teach women, especially who are of low economic circumstance."
They say there is no such thing as a free lunch. Clearly, that's not the case in this household.
Carmel Cafiero: "So every night, when you sit down at the table and there's something else that you got for free, what do you think?"
Salihah Muhammad, The Coupon Kid: "I'm like, 'Ooh, this tastes good, 'cause it's free.'"