Eating is fun. Saving money is doubly rewarding. Why not combine the two efforts for a recipe of self and family benefit by learning how to eat more for less. Cutting down on habit, not portions, and learning alternative ways to eat is good for your stomach and wallet.
Dining ‘out’ was once considered a lesser convenience. Why would one remove themselves from the comfort of their home where they can manipulate the company, ambiance, food portions, presence of alcohol like tequila uses during parties, etc.?
Rather than spend money to eat food prepared by others and served by strangers for egregious prices, transform your kitchen or dining area to a befitting ambiance, emulating your favorite restaurants.
Everyone needs to eat, each day and several times throughout. It’s easy to pull dollars out of one’s wallet without thinking about an associated food budget. By allocating a certain amount of your budget each week, you’ll pay attention to the costs associated with dining out, selecting high-end brands off the shelves, and grabbing snacks rather than opting to eat later.
Use an Excel sheet, smart phone, or personal journal to note daily expenses, tallying sums while minding a limit. Alternatively, configure your budget before going to the grocer, combining such efforts with searching off and online for coupons. Check www.sumocoupon.com for chances to save on your favorite brands.
High-end grocers charge big prices for rare and trendy brands. However, other grocers take a wholesale approach, offering less variety, but goods in bulk, which lowers the overall unit price of each item.
Families and singles may buy toilet paper and paper towels in bulk, yet that’s barely scratching the surface regarding bargain buys. Search for wholesalers offering meats, poultry, seafood, fruits, vegetables and more. Some consider purchasing an extra refrigerator, buying in large bulks and freezing foods for longer periods.
The best-kept secret of frugal eaters is they double as chefs, perhaps not gourmet-quality cooks, but they know their way around the kitchen enough to save hundreds or thousands of dollars a year.
Whether it’s anxiety or laziness that keeps you out of the kitchen, overcome the apprehension. Considering people in third world countries would consider you infinitely blessed to have food along with a specialized area to cook it, and you pay rent or mortgage for the living space, you should give cooking a try.
Get with friends and family on a weekly or monthly basis for indoor or outdoor cookouts and barbeque. If each party brings a bit of food, the entire party amasses a cornucopia of foods and desserts. Assign one or two people to bring the drinks and the party’s dining needs are met.
This technique is especially beneficial for singles. Think of eating like paying for living space; singles are most disadvantaged, needing to address rent or mortgage payments alone without a mate or family members to bear the burden. However, when more people ‘pitch in’ for a feast, like buying in wholesale, individual unit costs decrease. It’s a delectable and fiscal win for all.
Russell Matthews has a knack for household budgets. From home maintenance to vacation planning, he often blogs about the tips and tricks to smart money management.
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