In today's challenging economy, most people are constantly looking for ways to live more economically and save money. Taking advantage of sales and using coupons can be a great way to stretch one's household budget. Instead of buying items at full price when they are needed, it's usually better to simply stock up on them when they are on sale or when you have a good coupon you can use. However, many families find that their homes become cluttered messes in their attempt to live more frugally. If you'd like to stock up and keep "extras" on hand, it's necessary to come up with an effective storage strategy. Here are a few ideas you can use to find good storage areas as well as keep them easily accessible and organized.

Don't Overdo It

Sometimes it might be tempting to stock up on two dozen tubes of toothpaste or a dozen boxes of cereal when they are on sale. However, before you purchase multiple items of the same product, ask yourself if you really need that particular item in that kind of quantity. In many cases, the answer will be "no." Keep in mind that even the largest of homes has a finite amount of storage space. If you fill up your storage space with only a few product types, you'll have less space available for other items that you might also need. In most cases, it's best to have only a few of each item, unless it's something that you use quite frequently. This is especially true in the case of large items that require a lot of storage space, or items that have an expiration date.

Good Storage Locations

If you're serious about saving money by stocking up, it's important to develop some good storage strategies. An empty closet or even an unused spare bedroom could be the perfect spot. Although the basement or attic might seem like attractive storage options, it's important to pay attention to temperature and humidity conditions. For example, a humid basement would probably not be the best location to store paper products, and a hot attic wouldn't be an ideal spot to store candles or extra containers of shortening.

Once you've selected a storage location, it's time to think about storage methods. In many cases, a full-height bookcase or a freestanding shelf unit can be the perfect choice. Wall-mounted shelves can also work well, especially in areas such as closets. If you're short on space, even plastic bins and boxes can work. Just be sure you carefully label everything so that your items will be easy to locate. In the case of items that have expiration dates, marking the earliest expiration date on the outside of the box can also be a good strategy. You should also be sure to rotate your stock properly. For example, if you already have a dozen cans of vegetables on your shelf, don't place newly purchased cans in front of them. Instead, place the newly purchased items behind the existing ones so that the older products will get used first.

Safety First

When stocking up on household goods, it's important to pay attention to safety. Some items are simply not safe to store in certain locations. For example, storing large quantities of paper products in a hot attic that doesn't have good ventilation could pose a fire hazard. High temperatures or freezing temperatures can also cause unsafe conditions with certain cleaning products or other chemical-based items. Even though you might be trying to save money, safety should still be one of your primary concerns.

Author's Bio: 

Author, Maya Willis, is’s number one design specialist on decorating with horse metal wall artwork and metal cross wall artwork.