Shop Less, Save Money
Do you ever say I saved $14 on this pair of pants or I bought this or that to save money? Guess how you can save the most money of all? Not buying anything! I know you have to have food, but if you are strategic about how you shop, you can save a ton of money. You’d be surprised.
One of the best reasons you save money by staying out of the store is you don’t make impulse buys. Every time you go to the grocery store, you’re at risk for buying things your family doesn’t need. The store is set up to trick you into a few add ons at the register. They have their products strategically placed to get you to make more purchases. Even the music at the store is chosen to make you want to relax and enjoy and BUY MORE!
Less trips to the store helps you save money
Another way you can save by shopping less is on gas. It costs money every time you start up that car. It may be more difficult to bring home the bulk of your shopping needs only once a month instead of once a week, but it will save you big in the long run. Wasted trips to the store add up on your gas bill. Guess what is a really great side effect of this? You save TIME as well. If you add up how long it takes you to run to the store every week for supplies, that’s a big chunk of your year. If you make a bigger trip once a month and buy in bulk, you get cheaper prices, make less purchases you didn’t plan and have a ton of extra time to spend doing something to enjoy more.
Buy in bulk to save money
If you only do your main shopping monthly, you can buy your staple items in bulk. A month’s worth of cereal or crackers for the kids is a lot. You can get big bags of flour or tubs of cookies for the kids and save money big time. You can divide big packages into smaller containers like mason jars and freeze them or store them in the cupboard depending on what they are.
We buy everything once a month and just go out once a week and grab some milk and produce at Braum’s or some other store that only carries those things. I even send my husband there on his way home from work so we save more time and money on gas since it’s on the way.
I love that when I buy in bulk, I also save on packaging. I hate the idea of all the packaging from my products going into the landfill. We recycle as much as we can and buy as little packaging as our products come in.
Less trips to the store is less receipts for your childcare taxes
Taxes are a big headache for childcare. I LOVE the effect of shopping once a month verses every week on my tax work. I just have 12-14 receipts to log instead of 50 or more. It’s another great time saver. It cuts down on papers I have to store as well. I have been doing this for the past two years and it makes a HUGE difference in my tax prep times!
In order to be able to shop only once a month (excluding fresh produce and milk), you have to get organized. I use my daycare menu to make a shopping list of anything I need to make what’s on it. Each month on grocery shopping week, I pull out the list and check around the house for what I need more of for that month. Then I add on anything special I need for something I plan to make that’s not on the menu. I make most of what we eat homemade, so there are a lot less ingredients needed than you might think to make most everything we eat. Click here to see how I save time and money with pantry cooking.
My daughter even joined a csa (community supported agriculture) where she picks up a produce basket once a week. This has cut her shopping needs way down and allowed her to shop once a month or less for other things. This is a great idea. If we had one here, I would jump on that. In the summer, we grow a lot of our own produce, so that cuts down on fresh food shopping. We can also get what we can’t grow at the farmer’s market.
Even if you can’t pare your shopping trips down to once a month, if you are shopping nightly, try going once a week. If you shop weekly, try every other week. You’ll get the hang of it before you know it. You might be able to go even longer than a month between trips. Feeding and caring for 9 people in my house, I’m not sure if I could drag home food and supplies for more than 4 weeks, but I wouldn’t mind giving it a try. I HATE going to the store. I enjoy doing it as little as possible!
Maybe this post will inspire you to do something different in your routine that will save you a bit of money throughout the year. Every little bit adds up. You can save a ton of money AND time if you put a little thought into how you do things. This is just one way that can really help.
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