A few months ago, I quit my engineering job to raise my baby and perhaps grow our family. Obviously, our budget had to change, and thankfully I've been able to save a TON of money with a little bit of effort. I've always been a fairly savvy shopper (I love clearance), but I took it to a whole new level. I found that if I just spend a few minutes thinking about what I'm going to buy before I leave, I can save hundreds every month!
One area where I've been able to save the most is grocery shopping. I used to arrive at the store with no concrete plans and hope that I stumbled on some of the best deals in the store. Sometimes that worked. Most of the time it didn't. Now I allow myself 10 minutes to plan every shopping trip, and I easily save 40% every single time on healthy food. Guys, that's a ton of money! If I can do it with a baby, you can too! Here are the five ways that I save money on groceries without trying very hard.
The best deals are found on the front and the back of the ad, and they usually contain the foods that people need to buy every week like produce and meat. So if you don't have time to look through the entire ad, at least glance at those two pages.
2. Download Your Store's App - It seems like every store has an app these days, and I was surprised to find how useful they are. The major grocery store chain down here in Florida is Publix and their app is wonderful. The app lists all of the sale items mentioned in the ad every week and allows you to place all of the items you want on a digital shopping list. Therefore, you can't forget the sale items that you need from the store because you will always have your shopping list with you. This has prevented me from forgetting items due to my mommy brain so many times and has prevented me from reaching for the more expensive items on a whim. When you have a good list, you will be much more likely to stick to it!
Think that clipping coupons is a waste of time? Try to pair your coupons with the sale items that are on your shopping list for maximum savings. Just type what you are already going to buy in the search bar!
4. Ibotta - Folks, this is the best rebate app of all time. There are rebates for produce, meat, and health foods on this app. When was the last time you saw a coupon for produce?! All you do is scan the item (if it has a bar code) and your receipt when you get home. It's so easy! You'll be able to "cash out" once you reach $20.00, and you can send the money to your PayPal or obtain gift cards for major companies like Target and Amazon. Who doesn't want free gift cards for buying healthy food? I seriously open this app just to peruse for my own entertainment all the time.
If you're interested, use my referral link below. You'll get $10 when you download the app and obtain your first rebate, and I'll get $5 for referring a friend. Refer your friends as well, and you could make even more!
5. Become a Krazy Coupon Lady - Everything that you ever didn't know you wanted to know about coupons is at thekrazycouponlady.com. It really is krazy. The wealth of information is simply astounding. That being said, it can be a little much for beginners or if you are trying to be speedy. What I recommend is to open the page for your store (they have every store in the universe on the site), and check to see if there are any "freebies" or "moneymakers." It's what it sounds like. "Freebies" are items that are completely free and "moneymakers" are items that the store will actually pay you to take away, if you have the right coupons. They list out all the coupons for you, so all you have to do is click on the links.
Over the past couple weeks, I've gotten two bottles of lotion for free and a half gallon of fruit and veggie juice for $0.25 because of this site. It's not a ton of stuff, but it's really exciting to get something for free.
That's how I save hundreds at the grocery store on my phone in 10 minutes flat. Remember to stack the sales, coupons, and rebates for the most savings and have fun with it! You'll gradually get better and better at saving as the weeks pass.
If you have any money-saving tips, please let me know what you do below. I'm definitely still looking to improve during 2017. One of my goals is to be more frugal this year. Happy savings!