Shopping for weekly food, drinks and necessities cuts into most families’ budgets.
As prices go up and the choices are even more varied, the money just doesn’t seem to go as far as it used to. “Shall I have that or that? Oh I’ll have both!” Supermarkets also vary radically in terms of price and the myriad of offers they have.
It’s right here that your life skills for how you manage your cupboards and fridge and the money you have to stock them with come in.
To help you get the most for your money and keep your cupboards and fridge stocked with the right stuff, we’ve put together 6 money-saving tips that will refresh your skills in this area. They’re pretty much time-worn ideas to lower your shopping bill but they work.
Tip 1 – Make a Menu Plan
Okay, it’s gonna take you a bit of time but is easier than you might think. Get yourself a menu planner. There are masses on the net but if you go to Microsoft Excel, they have an online templates section and there’s a link to a weekly menu planner that works just great.) Most cookbooks offer some kind of planner table too, so you’re not going to be short of ideas.
Why plan your meals? Menu planning effectively puts together a shopping list for you.
Tip 2 – Keep Your Meals Simple
A) You’re more likely to stick with the plan if there are quick and easy meals.
B) You’ll save a heck of a lot of money as you’ll need fewer (and less exotic) ingredients.
Tip 3 – Check What you’ve Got (Cupboards/Fridge/Freezer)
You’ll be amazed how many people buy what they already have at home and then end up throwing stuff away because it’s out of date. (You know what I’m talking about – you’ve been there).
If you can stand it and eat your cupboards/freezer, etc., bare, you may find you don’t have to go shopping for weeks (or at least buy very little).
Tip 4 – Shop with a List
Make a list of everything you need from your menu plan (don’t forget to check those cupboards!). Then go to the supermarket ONCE armed with your list.
It’s really important that this list reflects your budget if you’re going to reduce shopping bills. That means shopping smart for basic items and keeping luxuries occasional.
Why once? Each and every time you “pop” to the shops you’ll pick up a few impulse items and before you know it your shopping bill’s exploded.
This is the why the list is important too. As long as you only buy what’s on it, you won’t be lured by all the supermarkets “you’ve got to have it” marketing promotions for things that you simply DO NOT NEED.
Stick to your list. Do not deviate from your list. Do not pass GO because you won’t collect 200 you’ll spend it. Non-compliance will result in self-destruct – okay I’m being extreme but it will result in wasted money!
By keeping that naughty old self-discipline under control, you’ll be amazed at how low you can go with your spending.
Tip 5 – Use Coupons
Keep an eye out for coupons in magazines, newspaper fliers, supermarket inserts and on the net. Check your coupons against your shopping list before you go and put relevant ones in your purse with your money to remind you to “pay” with them at the checkout.
Tip 6 – Eat Before you Go
Never, ever, ever go shopping hungry or take a hungry hubby or child with you. Hungry is greedy and the greedy little whelp will have you reaching for all those things that aren’t on your list, blowing up your shopping bill.
Stick with these few tips to refresh your skills in this area and you’ll be amazed at how much more money you have let at the end of the week/month.
Have you done this? Leave a comment about how much money you managed to save?