The rising prices of commodities has made it even more difficult for adults to budget their money well. This is especially true when it comes to grocery shopping. Normally, you’ll have a lot of things on your list, which would mean that you’ll need to shell out a considerable amount every time you’re going to the supermarket. But what you should know is that there are weird yet practical money tips to help you slash a good portion of your grocery budget.
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- Know the prices of the items you buy regularly.
Create a list of the products you buy on a weekly, bi-monthly or monthly basis. Write down the prices of each item. By knowing how much each one costs, you’ll be able to determine how much money to bring to the grocery store. That way you won’t get to overspend.
- Make a shopping list and stick to it.
When you have a list while you’re out grocery shopping, you won’t easily get tempted to check out other aisles and buy unnecessary supplies. So, before driving out to your favorite grocery store, make an inventory of the products you have at home. This prevents you from buying stuff that you don’t need yet.
- Prepare a meal plan.
Once you have a list of the items you usually shop for, it’ll be easier to make a meal plan for the week or month using the list you have. Again, this will help you buy only the stuff you need.
- Determine when the best time to shop is.
Wednesdays are usually when grocers release their weekly circulars, which means that you’ll be one of the first people to be able to take advantage of sale items. Avoid Tuesdays because most of the items on sale will be sold out. Saturdays are the busiest day of the week, which isn’t a good time to go shopping. Also, shop the earliest time possible because clearance items will be the first to get sold out as soon as the store opens. Shopping an hour before closing time can also let you in on some discounts, especially at the bakeshop and produce department.
- Try your local meat market.
Oftentimes, meat products are the most expensive things on your grocery list. As one of the practical money tips, experts suggest to check out local butchers and niche grocers as they have better prices and fresher products.
- Patronize local produce stands.
Just like meat sellers, your local farmers’ market will have the best prices on fresh produce. By checking your town for the best place to buy fresh fruits and vegetables, you’ll be able to stretch your grocery budget and have the best value for your money.
Also, consider buying produce when it’s in season. They cheaper and most of all fresher and yummier.
- Compare brands.
Most people have brands that they have been loyal to for so long. But it’s wise to know that some new or local brands may offer the same quality but at a lower price, which would allow you to maximize your grocery money.
- Eat a hearty meal before going to the supermarket.
When you’re hungry, you’ll tend to want to spend more on food. This means that you might end up shopping for things that you don’t actually need or use. So, always have a good meal before heading out to your local grocer.
- Keep it smart by buying in bulk.
Things that you use on a regular basis, like toilet paper, dishwashing liquid, trash bags, toothpaste, milk, coffee, etc. are best bought in bulk. This is because you’ll find them cheaper by the dozen, helping you save money in the long run.
- Look out for cheaper grocery stores.
Aside from choosing cheaper brands, it’s also wise to buy from local grocers that offer the lowest prices. By doing so, you’ll have plenty of options at a fraction of the cost. So, look for a grocer that offers lower prices than Walmart and other major grocery chains.
- Make the most of coupons.
Discount coupons have always been so helpful, especially when grocery shopping. This is why many experts include using coupons in their practical money tips. Check out local newspapers and watch out for weekly coupons. Also, sign up with sites that offer discount coupons for a lot of the products in your grocery list.
It’s also best to ask your grocer if they accept competitor coupons. Some of the places that do include Price Chopper, Super G, Walmart and Kroger.
Keep these practical money tips in mind when shopping for groceries and you’ll be amazed at how much mileage your budget gets you.