All of us suffer through stages in life where money is tight. Fortunately for us, there are a few expenses that we can quickly eliminate, for instance cable television, gym memberships, and eating out at restaurants. On the contrary, there are other costs that we simply can’t avoid. Debt repayments, rent and school tuition are just a few of the mandatory expenses that are set and there’s very little we can do about it. Having said that, there is one necessary expense where we can all save a considerable amount of money; and that expense is food.
Having undertaken some research, I’ve discovered there are a number of ways in which we can all save on food expenses. It goes without saying, dining out at restaurants is much more expensive than eating at home, but I’m talking about saving money on your weekly food bills. You’ll be delighted at just how much money you can save by following some general guidelines, so here are some useful tips that can save you thousands of dollars each year on your grocery bills.
Plan your meals and write a shopping list
Have you ever had to throw away food simply because it’s past its expiration date? I know I have! By planning each meal of the week, you can be sure that you only spend money on food that is needed. Take a look in your pantry to see what ingredients you presently have, which ingredients you need to buy, and write a list of all the ingredients you’ll need for the following week.
A lot of us are guilty of impulse buying at the supermarket, so planning your meals and purchasing only the ingredients on your list will significantly minimise any impulse buying. Remember to always keep stationary in the kitchen, so when you run out of a particular ingredient, you can jot it down instantly and perhaps prevent a 2nd trip to the grocery store. And always shop for food on a full stomach!
Don’t bring your kids to the grocery store
In some cases it can be tricky to organise, but if you go grocery shopping when your kids are at school or in the evening when somebody can watch them, you’ll save a significant amount of money. Not only can you shop a lot quicker, but you don’t have to drain your energy by saying ‘NO’ to your children every aisle. Normally this can become overwhelming, so lots of people will give in here and there, and these excessive items will aggregate over the year much more than you’d envision.
Shop at night
Speaking of shopping at night, you’re more than likely to find the best prices at this time of day. Big supermarkets will typically discount goods when they’re overstocked, and perishable goods like bread, fruit and veggies will also likely to be discounted. While it may sound a tad harsh 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, particularly on discounted items. Be careful though, you don’t want to purchase excessively and throw away food, but always keep in mind that you can cook meals and freeze them for a later time. Bread, butter, and cheese will last approximately three months in the freezer, and meat will typically last up to six months. Just ensure you have enough room in your freezer first!
Have a go at discounted supermarkets
Discounted supermarkets such as Aldi will always have items that are less costly than the supermarket giants like Woolworths and Coles. Conversely, some products will be more expensive, so try finding bargains at discounted supermarkets prior to heading to your usual supermarket. Although you may not recognise some of the brands, the quality of the food is just about the same. The design is also different, so it may take a bit of getting used to, but if you want to save money on food then this is a superb idea.
If you’re dealing with financial challenges, always remember that there are easy ways to save a considerable amount of money on one of your biggest costs. By making some small changes in conjunction with a dash of discipline, you could potentially save thousands of dollars yearly on your grocery bills.
If you find that your financial condition is still worsening, it’s always better to seek financial advice sooner rather than later. Speak with the professionals at Bankruptcy Experts Parramatta on 1300 795 575, or visit our website for more financial advice: www.bankruptcyexpertsparramatta.com.au