Filed under: Personal Finance - Saving Money.
Everyone has to eat, making groceries an essential part of every budget. Learn how to keep your family full for less with these money saving tips.
Set a Budget
Track your grocery store spending for several weeks to determine about how much you spend on groceries during an average week. If your goal is to spend less on groceries, lower your weekly expenditure amount slightly, and make this your new grocery budget. Set aside this amount of money for each week in a given month, either physically, using cash and envelopes, or mentally.
When you go to the store, the money you set aside is the maximum that you can spend for the month. If you go over budget one week, the money must come out of another week’s stash. Likewise, if money is left over one week, it can roll over to the next week. Once you become comfortable spending slightly less each week, continue to gradually lower your budget until you reach your ideal budget.
Buy Only What You Can Use
Purchasing a 10 lb bag of grapefruit seems like a great way to stay healthy. However, if you can only eat half of the grapefruit before they start going soft, it is a waste of money. Be aware of expiration dates and your family’s rate of consumption when shopping.
Stock Up During Sales
When your favorite non-perishable items are on sale, take advantage of the low price and buy enough to last until the next sale. Typically you’ll need to buy enough to last for six to eight weeks. As always, check expiration dates before buying.
Check the Sunday paper, mailings and printable coupon sites to find coupons for many food items. Coupon blogs can help you match these coupons with sales at local grocery store sales.
Check Out Markdowns
Many stores have a clearance sections where they place day-old baked goods, soon-to-expire meat and discontinued items for a discount. Check this section to see if you snag an item you typically use for less. Meat, bread and other items can be frozen to extend their lives.
Shop Only Once a Week
Planning out one weekly shopping trip, while avoiding stopping by the grocery store on a whim, helps to prevent impulse buys. Make a list and think about meals before you go to the store to avoid forgetting items.