With the price of groceries continually on the rise, it’s always nice to find a discount.
Locally, we have two ‘day old’ bread stores? Mrs. Bairds and Sara Lee’s. You can still get a good loaf of bread for about $1.29; store brand bread is around .89, Thomas’s English Muffins for $1.89, hot dog and hamburger buns .89. It’s a good deal if you’re in the area! They carry some chips, cookies and spices also. Bread freezes, so you can make one trip and freeze some!
Last semester my students turned me on to Food For Less grocery store. Most of their grocery prices are comparable to our local big store, but their specials are fabulous, along with the prices for milk and produce. Do you have a store like this in your area? This is a hit or miss store, so you never know what they are going to have. Today I paid $1.25 for a quart of milk, .29 lb for bananas, cucumbers .10 each, and .99 for those huge bottles of generic ketchup. Usually, and today they were out, Romaine lettuce .49, and green peppers are 3/$1.00 or 6/$1.00. Red and yellow peppers I’ve never seen more than .79 each, and I have seen 6/$1.00. I’ve also paid .10 lb for baking potatoes and .29 lb for sweet potatoes. They also carry some organic milk products and I’ve saved $1.00 a quart on soy milk. If they have the produce and milk in, it’s a steal! They had their bread on sale, wheat 2/ $1.00 today.
Ask when the stores get their trucks in and try and be there that day.
Check the dollar store for your spices. I’ve paid .50 for what my local big store carries for $2.29. And as previously mentioned in an article, the dollar store is the place to buy your birthday or holiday cards and balloons!
Check for coupons in the Sunday paper or online. But be careful – only use the coupons for items that you normally would buy anyway. Many generic products are still cheaper than the brand name with a coupon. So shop smart.
Watch the prices on larger items. We think that buying bigger, like one large can of beans vs. 2 small ones, is going to be cheaper, but not always. So check your prices and ounces on the 2 small cans vs. the larger can cost and ounces. I’ve found this to be true on beans, toilet paper, and boxed potatoes recently. So check before you buy!
Walmart doesn’t match prices any longer, but they have a system where you scan your grocery bill barcode, and they check for local sales, and you rack up money in your account that you can use later in the store.
Last tip: Make a weekly menu for dinner. Then make a list of what you need and do your shopping. This helps you only buy what you really need, no guessing. This is a time saver too – it takes the ‘staring into the refridge, what’s for dinner?’ out of the equation.
Remember, around the holidays you will be spending more on food and groceries. This means you probably need to be cutting back on some other area of your budget. Around Christmas time, you are also spending on gifts! Plan ahead! Start saving in June or earlier for these added expenses. Tuck a little in an envelope every payday or start a holiday savings account at your bank or credit union. Then you won’t be racking up those credit card charges!
For more information on budgets, you might be interested in Just the Basics Please! Book 1:Money.