Save money on groceries.
If you’ve been to the grocery store recently, you have probably felt the effects of the rising food prices. Even buying just staple items can add up quickly. While there is not much that we can do about the food prices themselves, there are some ways to shop smarter and save a lot of money.
1. Stock the freezer when meat is on sale. This is probably the biggest way to save money at the grocery store because meat is typically one of the more expensive items to buy. Never buy meat at the full price. For example, if ground beef is usually around $3.99 per pound and is $1.50 off per pound this week, buy several one-pound packages (or divide into your own smaller amounts if sold in bulk packaging) and freeze for later. Stocking up during this sale time cuts this part of your grocery bill by nearly 40%!
2. Look through local flyers for weekly sale items. This is especially helpful for essential items like toilet paper, paper towels, laundry detergent, and so on, because even if you aren’t running low on an item, buying it when it is on sale will save you money from paying full price at a later date.
3. Plan your meals for the week. This can also go along with weekly sale items. For instance, if pasta is on sale this week, plan spaghetti one night; if taco shells are on sale, plan a taco night. Besides planning your week of meals utilizing sale items, planning ahead and creating a list will also keep you from buying unnecessary, impulse items. Make your list… and only buy what’s on the list.
4. Buy store brand or generic. Often, store brand or private labels are packaged by the name brand company. There is literally no difference in the finished product, except for the name on the package. There is a big difference in price though. Buying the store brand or generic can save you up to 50% from comparable name-brand items.
5. Skip the processed food and ready-made meals. Yes, these items are convenient, but you are also paying for that convenience. Instead of buying a family-size bag of potato chips, buy a five-pound bag of potatoes to create side dishes for meals. The cost is about the same; however, the bag of potatoes will stretch your dollars a lot further by offering more options for more meals. Besides the cost savings, skipping the processed foods is a much healthier choice for your family as well.
How do you save on groceries? Have you tried any of these?
Gina Young is an MBA and licensed teacher, finance writer, and creator of MoneySavvyLiving.com. Throughout her career in finance, Gina has advised clients in the areas of investing, retirement planning, and personal finance. As a manager, she trained and educated employees on how to succeed in sales and marketing. Her most important role, though, is that of being a wife and mother of three sons.