Reduce debt and build wealth through simple cost cutting measures in one of the most difficult monthly expenses to control in a household; the grocery bill. This often includes not only food, but basic necessities to run a home. Essential cost cutting measures will free dollars for reducing debt and building wealth.
As the economy staggers and stumbles, the cost of food and home essentials continues to rise and check-out sticker shock is prevalent. One might wonder in amazement how that list of low dollar items added up to hundreds spent, which are still not likely to satisfy all the needs of the entire paycheck period. Many families take advantage of one stop shopping to save time and money at the check-out. However, one stop shopping can actually increase the likelihood of implulse purchases. Grocery shopping replacing restaurants and carry out may seem like a sure cost saving to a family budget, but will still break the bank without a plan.
Considering this old time saying that really is an ongoing truth worth repeating; "count the pennies and the dollars will count themselves", will have a great impact on the bottom line when grocery shopping. Re-evaluate household needs by tracking in writing staple foods and meals that are eaten, and items such as toilet paper, and cleaners, with approximate quantities needed for a month. Families will not benefit buying coupon related or store sale items they never use. When true staple items go on sale, purchase enough of them to create a pantry supply that goes beyond a paycheck period. Purchase as large a quantity of these items as can be conveniently stored with long term needs in mind. For example, many items such as canned green beans, canned cranberry sauce, and boxed potatoes are deeply discounted after holidays. Purchasing staple items this way will mitigate inflation.
Avoid costly prepared convenience foods. Research new meals that use fewer and less expensive ingredients to add variety and reduce meal costs.Once a month try a new recipe that follows the fewer ingredients - less expensive per person model. Add these new favorites to family meal options. Rely on tried and true inexpensive meals at least four times a week. Many nutritious meals can be made inexpensively without shortchanging flavor, appearance, or portion size. Some creative meal planning,such as breakfast dinners can be fun while saving money at the same time. An evening meal of homemade waffles, and "made to order" omlettes is a penny pinching and simple to prepare meal to please the entire family. Vegetarian meals are also often inexpensive and nutritious and when added to a weekly or monthly meal plan will create further savings for other financial needs. Cook in quantities that will not create abndant leftovers that are likely to be thrown out. Small portions of leftovers may create time and money savings if used for next day take to work or school lunches.
Reward frugal shopping by diverting a portion of the money saved immediately to an account set up for debt managment and investments. Many banks offer free online or by phone transfers enabling easy and quick movement of funds from checking to savings.
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