Money Saving Guide:
Slashing Groceries Bills
Article Written By:
Creative Homemaking - http://www.creativehomemaking.com
Suite 101- http://www.suite101.com/welcome.cfm/creative_homemaking
Even the thought of spending a lot of time tracking grocery prices from
store to store gives me a headache. I know a lot of people who keep
detailed notes of every grocery item they regularly purchase and
routinely note the price fluctuations at the grocery stores they
I used to not pay attention to grocery prices much at all. I have never
been one to spend excessively, and have always been pretty good
about only getting what's on my shopping list (a necessity!), but it
took me awhile to realize that I could save some extra money if I
started paying a little more attention to grocery price variations.
I recognize the fact that some people need to reduce their monthly
bills as much as possible, and how necessary it is for some to spend
as little as possible on groceries, especially if you have a lot of
mouths to feed. Although we have no money leftover at the end of the
month, so to speak, I never tried to drastically reduce our grocery bill
until quite by accident I discovered that if I spent less on groceries, I
would have more money to spend on other things! That's when I really
started to change my ways. You'll find that my approach to being
frugal-minded is not as drastic as some, but I consider myself to be a
person who saves money when I can, and have made it a personal
challenge to not spend money I don't have to. If you follow my advice,
you will definitely see a reduction in your grocery bill. If you want to
make drastic changes, I highly recommend Amy Dacyczyn's book,
The Tightwad Gazette, if you don't already own a copy. You can also
order a copy at Amazon. This book is indispensable in all areas of
frugality. Amy recommends keeping a price book, which I won't go
into detail about here because I haven't created one myself, but if you
are serious about making big changes, she can show you how.
Another book I highly recommend is Jonni McCoy's Miserly Moms.
She also has a lot of great ideas you might find helpful. You can order
her book from Amazon or from the Miserly Moms web site, and she
also has a mailing list where frugal moms who have read her book can
share ideas with each other. Here I will share with you my own
changes that helped me take a big dent out of my grocery bill.
Like I mentioned previously, I have always made a list before going to
the grocery store. Every Saturday or Sunday I sit down and figure out
what to serve for dinner every night for the next week. This list also
includes snack ideas and lunch menus for my daughter. Every
Wednesday I glance through the coupons in the local newspaper and
make a mental note of what's on sale and where. Remember, just
because something's on sale doesn't mean you need it. Stick only to
things you would have bought anyway. If I notice chicken, hamburger,
or pork chops are on sale, for example, I might alter my menu to
include one of these items.
I decide which store to shop at based on my findings in the
advertisements. I usually don't go to more than one store unless one
store is having a particularly good deal not found anywhere else. The
grocery stores in our area are usually pretty competitive with each
other; consequently, their sale prices are fairly predictable.
I have never been one to stock up much, due to limited freezer and
pantry space, but I recently realized the value of buying a lot of one
item on sale. I usually avoid our neighborhood market because it is a
small store and often overpriced, but they finally caught on to the idea
of having specials to draw people in. One day I noticed they had 5-lb.
chubs of lean hamburger on sale for .69 a pound! I couldn't believe it. I
initially bought 2 chubs, and then a few days later couldn't resist going
back to get 2 more. I divided them into 1 lb. portions, wrapped them in
foil, and stuck them in the freezer. I was psyched. That same
weekend I found an unbelievable deal on pork chops and chicken
breasts at another grocery store. I bought several packages of those
also. I spent probably $40 to $50 on meat that week, but it lasted for
months! I was hooked...I knew I had to start stocking up more when I
could. It didn't make sense not to. My freezer was packed to
Just this last week I was lamenting the .89 per can price of tuna and
wishing I had stocked up more than I had. Tonight on my way home
from dropping off my daughter at her bible class, I stopped at the
neighborhood market to get some pretzels (1 1/2 pounds for $1.29!)
and just happened to notice their Starkist tuna was .59 per can with
no limit! I couldn't believe my luck and stocked up again.
Anyway, you get the idea. You may not see big changes at first, but if
you start stocking up here and there, you will see your grocery bills
getting lower and lower. You may find you start spending that little bit
of extra money somewhere else, but at least you have the choice to
decide where you want that money to go.
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