For so many families, the weekly grocery spend is one of the biggest drains on their personal finances. We all need to eat, and dinner times can be an important part of family life, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t do anything to cut back on your spending and make your budget go much further.
It all comes down to having some useful tactics in your toolbox when you go shopping, and making some small but meaningful changes. Here are some ideas that you can try out next time you do the shopping…
Make use of coupons
Couponing is a big thing on the other side of the pond, but they’re often overlooked here in the UK. By utilising them though, you can make some big savings and you can even bag yourself regular freebies.
They’re available for almost every product that you can imagine, including food, beauty, and household items, and it’s well worth seeing what’s available before you go shopping. A good place to get started is the dedicated page at Money Saving Expert.
Always plan your meals in advance
Going to the supermarket without a clear plan is a recipe for disaster, and you’ll almost definitely end up spending more than you need to. So let’s go right back to basics here… There’s no getting around it. At least, not if you don’t want to ruin your budget as soon as you walk into the store. A list is a must.
It os, of course, only any use at all if you actually stick to it. This means that you’ll have to be disciplined with yourself, and you’ll have to be firm when you have you head turned by something that looks delicious but was never in your plan.
Don’t take the kids!
Shopping with kids can be problematic for several reasons. You’re likely to be distracted, you won’t be able to fully concentrate on the task in hand, and they’ll no doubt pester you to add things to the trolley that you hadn’t budgeted for!
If you can, shop whilst they are at school, or leave them with a close friend or family member. This won’t be possible all of the time, but it’ll make your life much easier when it is.
Don’t fall for ‘offers’ that you don’t need
Just because something is half price, it doesn’t mean that you need it. What you need to remember is that offers exist to help businesses to make more sales – not necessarily to save you money.
If you do get tempted, be sure to take a closer look. Look at the price per 100g and compare several different options, and ask yourself whether it’s really something that you need. Offers are no use at all if all they are doing is causing you to spend more than you intended!
In our household, we love food. We really enjoy sharing a meal together at the end of a long day, and we always celebrate special occasions over the kitchen table with something a little indulgent. Food is important to us, but the reality is that so is our budget. Because we follow these tips here, we can save money without ever feeling like we are depriving ourselves.