A trip to the grocery store often leaves one wondering how they are going to manage to survive if the prices keep rising. In many places, the cost of a gallon of milk exceeds the price of a gallon of gas. In fact, in many places a gallon of milk is more than half of what the minimum wage is in the state.
This can make it difficult to eat healthy or even keep food on the table. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to feed your family on a small budget. You simply have to make some changes to your regular shopping habits.
Don’t Shop at Just One Store
Shopping at one store is often the downfall of your budget. One store may charge $1.99 for a loaf of white bread while a different store charges just $1.29. This may seem like a small savings, but how many loaves of bread do you go through in a month? The savings will add up over time.
Shop the Sales
It is also important to shop the sales in your area. Your regular store may be more convenient, but going across town to another store having a great sale could easily cut your weekly budget in half. For example, if the coffee you normally buy is always $7.99 at your store, but it is on sale for $5.99, that is a $2 difference.
You have to consider that this same type of savings could happen with 20 or more items. Shopping the sales could save you as much as $40 or more each week.
Buy Ahead When Prices are Low
If you come across a good deal on certain items that you and your family use all of the time, spend a few extra dollars and stock up on that particular item. This will pay off in the end. For example, if you go through a lot of barbecue sauce in the summer months and you find it on sale for 79 cents instead of the normal $1.29, buy enough to get you through the summer. This is 50 cents you won’t have to spend when the first bottle runs out.
Coupons can easily save you thousands of dollars a year on your grocery bill. It is time consuming, but if you want to cut your grocery bill, it may be a necessity. Start by purchasing a Sunday paper in your area that includes coupons from Smart Source, Red Plum, and P&G. These coupons will have you saving on everything from pet food and health products to diapers and frozen food. You can also go online and print coupons from some of the coupon sites.
The key is searching for stores in your areas that will double the value of the coupon for you. In other words, your 50-cent coupon could turn into $1 off the item you buy.
Grow Your Own Vegetables
It is unlikely that you will find coupons or good sales on fresh vegetables. It is also hard to stock up on perishable items. However, growing your own vegetables will help you feed your family healthy meals. If you do not have enough space for a garden, grow your favorite vegetables in containers.
Container gardening is appealing to those with small spaces. Even a small herb garden in your window can turn into big savings.
If you change your shopping habits and put a little effort into growing your own vegetables, you could easily see your grocery bill cut in half. Feeding your family may seem like an expensive task, but stocking up on items when they are on sale or cheaper with a coupon will save you money and keep your family fed.