We all go through periods in life where money is tight. Fortunately for us, there are several expenses that we can readily do away with, like cable television, gym memberships, and eating out at restaurants. On the contrary, there are other expenditures that we simply can’t avoid. Debt repayments, rent and school fees are just a number of the mandatory expenses that are fixed and there’s little we can do about it. Having said this, there is one mandatory expense where we can all save a great deal of money; and that expense is food.
Having done some research, I’ve found there are a variety of ways in which we can all save on food expenses. Naturally, dining out at restaurants is much more costly than eating at home, but I’m talking about saving money on your weekly grocery bills. You’ll be delighted at just how much money you can save by sticking to some helpful guidelines, so here are some quick tips that can save you thousands of dollars each year on your grocery bills.
Plan your meals and prepare a shopping list
Have you ever needed to throw away food simply because it’s past its expiration date? I know I have! By planning every meal of the week, you can make sure that you just spend money on food that is needed. Look in your pantry to find what ingredients you currently have, which ingredients you have to buy, and prepare a list of all the ingredients you’ll need for the coming week.
Many of us are regretful of impulse buying at the grocery store, so planning your meals and sticking to the ingredients on your list will considerably minimise any impulse buying. Remember to always keep stationary in the kitchen, so when you run out of a specific ingredient, you can jot it down instantly and perhaps eliminate a second trip to the grocery store. And always shop for groceries on a full stomach!
Don’t bring your children to the supermarket
Often it can be tricky to organise, but if you go grocery shopping when your children go to school or at night when someone can keep an eye on them, you’ll save a great deal of money. Not only can you shop faster, but you don’t need to waste your energy by saying ‘NO’ to your children every aisle. Generally this can be overpowering, so a lot of people will give in occasionally, and these nonessential items will aggregate over the year far more than you’d envision.
Shop at night
Speaking of shopping at night, you’re more than likely to uncover the best prices at this time of day. Big grocery stores will normally discount goods when they’re overstocked, and perishable goods like bread, fruit and vegetables will also likely to be discounted. While it may seem a tad cruel after a long day, you can bag a lot of bargains by shopping in the evening.
Buy in bulk
It should come as no surprise that buying in bulk will save you money, especially on discounted items. Be cautious though, you don’t want to buy too much and throw away food, but always remember that you can prepare meals and freeze them for a later time. Butter, cheese, and bread will keep as much as three months in the freezer, and meat will typically last up to six months. Just see to it that you have enough room in your freezer first!
Try discounted grocery stores
Discounted supermarkets like Aldi will always have products that are more affordable than the supermarket giants like Woolworths and Coles. On the contrary, some items will be more costly, so try finding bargains at discounted grocery stores prior to visiting your usual grocery store. Although you may not recognise some of the brands, the quality of the food is pretty much the same. The design is also different, so it may take a bit of getting used to, but if you wish to save money on food then this is a fantastic idea.
If you’re going through financial problems, always bear in mind that there are easy ways to save a significant amount of money on one of your largest expenditures. By making some minor changes together with a dash of self-discipline, you can potentially save thousands of dollars every year on your grocery bills.
If you discover that your financial situation is still worsening, it’s always better to seek financial guidance sooner rather than later. Call the professionals at Bankruptcy Experts Toowoomba on 1300 795 575, or visit our website for additional financial advice: www.bankruptcyexpertstoowoomba.com.au