Reduce Your Food Budget
My Story: No Income Grocery Shopping
Cut Your Grocery Bills by Half
A basic tenet of frugal living is that there is a lot of wiggle room in the family food budget. Yet there is also no expenditure area that has such a deep daily impact on our loved ones. Food is a huge part of family life. The shopping, the preparations, and even the reservations are all part of the love.
So, how do you save money without messing up the love? It can be intimidating for the beginning frugal shopper to change the way food is bought and/or prepared. Here are some beginner tips to cut the costs without becoming overwhelmed by bulk buying, visiting multiple stores, and price books. Those important skills can come later if you want or need to learn them.
I used these basic ideas when I first started my journey to thriftiness four years ago. I started gathering frugal tips from the usual sources on the Internet (especially The Dollar Stretcher!). However, I wasn't yet ready to completely revamp our food habits. Instead, over the course of about six months, I incorporated these ideas into my shopping and cut fifty percent from our food budget. Now, three years later, I generally spend less than $300 monthly on food for our family of four.
What I learned is that using one or all of these tips can make an immediate impact on your food budget. Most people don't become truly frugal overnight! It's better to master one tip at a time then to struggle with all six. If you have the luxury of a little time, you can evolve in to the frugal family you want to be.
These six tips will gradually get you on the road to a smaller food budget. Once you have mastered the basics, explore price books, bulk buying, and freezing ahead if you wish. Your family will still feel the love and so will your checkbook.
Amy Burns is a stay-at-home mother of two young children. Having recently survived a move from the Southwest to the much more expensive Windy City, she is enjoying applying frugal living techniques in a new environment.
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