Secrets of the Supermarket Shuffle

One of the most frequently asked questions we get when it comes to creating a budget pertains to the cost of food.  Step one:  eat at home.  Step two: create a grocery store budget and stick to it.  Use these tips to slice (pun intended) your spending in half and harvest (double pun!) some savings.

1.  Make a list.

Seriously folks, it seems simple, but staying focused is key.  Hold yourself accountable.  And for the love of all that is good in this world, eat BEFORE you walk in to the store.

2.  DIY.

Convenience foods (pre-chopped, prepared, and/or grab and go items) are darned convenient, but they come with a cost. Chopping veggies yourself, for example, can help you save up to a 300% (!) mark up on foods.  (We wish we were joking.)

3.  Avoid the center.

Not only is it healthier to shop the parameter of the store, it’s typically cheaper.  The fewer times a food has been touched by someone in a production line, the less overhead you’ll pay .  (See item #2.)

4.  Don’t fall for it.

Just because something says 10 for $10 doesn’t mean you have to buy 10.  Typically you can get the unit cost without buying the suggested quantity. The ad will disclose any quantity stipulations.

5.  Look up and down.

If you must wander in to the center aisles, look up and down before you throw an item in the cart.  Grocery stores put the most expensive choice of any given product right at eye level.

6.  Cash is king.

If you’re committed to sticking to a budget, leave your cards at home and walk in with your list in one hand and cash in the other. Pretty hard to overspend when you’re out of money.