25 January 2013

Make Your Shopping List Work Harder for You

Allison Dennis wrote "Make your shopping list work harder for you. I write a shopping list every week before I do my groceries and I set a budget, however, I noticed that each shop the amount I spent could vary considerably. My husband's salary is changing from weekly to monthly which has prompted me to tighten up on my grocery shopping (amongst many other things). Now when I go shopping, I write down the price of each item as it goes into the trolley and I keep a running tally of how much I've spent so far at the bottom of my list. Not only does this give a greater insight into how much each item in the basket actually costs, but because I want to stick to a certain budget, it enables me to prioritise what goes into my basket - meat, fruit, vegetables, baby goods (nappies, etc.) and then the rest. So far, I have reduced my bill by at least $50 a week without having to give anything up...I think this helps show how many hidden extras end up in the trolley each week."

Allison has the beginnings of her price book right there on her shopping list. This is exactly how, all those years ago, I started my price book and tracking grocery prices. Instead of discarding the list once I had finished the shopping, I would transfer the actual prices onto the next month's grocery list, ready to compare prices in store. At a glance I could see if the price of an item had increased (or decreased) and make a choice about buying it.  When you know your grocery prices you really can control your grocery bill.

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