Are you spending more than you should on groceries? Food is one area where it can be easy to be fooled by name brands and supposed sales that could end up pushing you over your budget. There are some great ways that you can trim the fat (literally and figuratively) from your grocery bill and your groceries. Here are a few ideas to try:
- Make a list. If you go into the store with no idea what you need you’re much more likely to overspend. Create a list ahead of time to keep you on task and within budget.
- Buy only things you know you will use. Don’t buy things because you think you might use them eventually. They might go bad before you get around to them and then you’ll be wasting both money and food.
- Track prices. One trick to keep your food bills down is to make trips to a couple local stores. Write down the prices of the foods you buy the most so you’ll know which stores are the best places to buy each.
- Get sales ads. Prepare for your shopping trip ahead of time by checking out sales flyers online or in local papers. You may find sales on items that you use regularly that can make it worthwhile to head to a particular store that has discounts on several products.
- Clip coupons. Coupons can be great if you use them wisely. Avoid buying items just because you have a coupon, as that won’t save you a thing in the end. Coupons on items you already use, however, can be great especially at stores that offer double or triple coupon deals.
- Try bulk. While not everything in bulk is a great deal, there are many items that are significantly cheaper when you buy them in large quantities or just not in a prepackaged format.
- Stop buying junk. Junk foods don’t offer you much nutritional value and the name brand versions can often be quite expensive. Cut out the junk from your diet, including sodas, snack cakes and chips and you’ll feel better and spend less.
- Don’t buy it just because it’s on sale. Sale items can trick you into thinking you’re getting a deal. Unless it’s something you would buy at regular price because you need or want it, don’t buy into sale prices.
- Avoid store displays that lure you in. Endcaps with shiny new products and food samples that let you try foods with the purpose of getting you to buy are dangerous fodder if you come to the store on an empty stomach.