Photo Credit: By 401(K) 2012 via Flickr
Now that the holidays are officially over, many people are ready to cut their grocery bill. A new year often ushers in new beginnings, resolutions, and renewed determination to make life changes. It’s important to remember that although coupons are the key component to cutting your grocery bill, there are a couple of preliminary steps that are important to consider. Here are 4 easy steps to save money on groceries.
Determine How Much You Are Spending on Groceries/Household Items
- Here’s the question, how much do you spend per week/month on grocery and household expenses? Not what you think you spend, but what you really really spend? Make sure to count those trips when you only intended to purchase one item but came out with $50 worth of groceries. (Please tell me I’m not the only one who does this)! You don’t have to be to the penny, a good guess is fine.
How much do you spend eating out?
- The second number to consider is how much money you spend eating out. You could cut your grocery bill in half, but if you are still spending a large amount of money each month on eating out it won’t seem like it. I’m not suggesting that you eliminate eating out by any means as balance is key to making long lasting changes.
Five Favorite Family Meals
- If I don’t have a plan for dinner we are more than likely going to eat out or order pizza. Something happens around 5pm when my children and husband start asking what’s for dinner…..my mind goes blank and my determination to save money goes out the window. Even if I have a pantry full of food, I tend to get overwhelmed by the possibilities. Instead, I think about my family’s 5 favorite meals and instantly have a dinner plan.
Set Realistic Goals
- Lastly, determine how much you’d like to spend. If you are currently spending $1,500 a month on groceries/household supplies it’s unrealistic to set a goal of $200 per month. Learning how to coupon effectively, is a process. You could start by setting a goal of saving 10% -15% within the first 30 days. If you’d like to cut back on eating out, consider how many times you are eating out per week, then set a goal.
In order to make lasting changes in your finances that you will enjoy the benefits of for years to come take a few minutes to lay a foundation by accessing your current situation. Be realistic, and set attainable goals then celebrate your success each time you make progress!