Monday, March 9, 2009

How not to overspend on groceries

Over the years, I've tried many of the suggestions put out there to save money on groceries. I cook mostly from scratch, shop around sales, plan for leftovers, stock up on bargains, and use coupons. But these three things have been most effective so I don't overspend:

1) Learn the prices for the main items you buy. Some people make price books. I don't. I just get used to the prices. Which leads to the next point...
2) Set an upper cost limit for pricier items. I don't go past a certain dollar amount on some items. I had to readjust when I moved to a different part of the country (right when food prices were soaring), but it doesn't take long to do that. Either adjust or go hungry :-) One of my adjustments last year was joining a warehouse club. The prices were consistent and helped me establish my budget in a new area. Now there are better supermarket sales and our budget has stabilized, so we didn't renew.
3) Pay all in cash. I always take out less money than my budgeted amount. It helps me stick to what I really need and if I forget anything (and I usually do), I still have some money left to get those things later on.

1 comment:

  1. Also, never go shopping on an empty stomach. Only buy what the kids eat and not what you think they might like. Don't put out all the juice when you get home - hide some!! Try and get all the items you need for the week - if weekly shop - so you don't have to go back and spend even more when you see something on special offer.