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05-01-2019 01:06 PM
I am newly retired and would like any tips that people have on saving money-I am willing to try anything I'm 66 and live with my husband and have a few young grandchildren. One thing I did was add up all of the withdrawls from the nice grocery store that we have here. I am spending about $800/month on groceries. We do not eat at restaurants at all and rarely spend money on entertainment except tv. Any tips would be so interesting-no matter how small
05-01-2019 01:17 PM
@Buyornot7 Hi and welcome to the retired life. I retired at the end of March 2018
I shop at Meijer's which is multi departmental. That means while I am there I am buying health and beauty, groceries and things like paper towel, detergent, etc.
I check sales circulars and even if I am stocked up on something I use all of the time like paper towel or especially bird seed, I will pick up another bundle of paper towel and bird seed to tide me over for those weeks they are not on sale.
When it comes to the real 'groceries' do you find you are eating everything or is there an increase in wasted food?
05-01-2019 01:21 PM
@Buyornot7. Do you have cable or satellite TV? Do you live in an urban area? If your answers are yes, you can save bigtime by getting rid of TV service and getting interior antennas for your TV and subscribing to Netflix for entertainment.
Give up your fancy grocery store and shop at Walmart. If you have a big store nearby you can use their shopping service and have groceries brought to your car. Save money and time.
Without knowing more about you, its hard to make other suggestions.
05-01-2019 01:32 PM - edited 05-01-2019 01:37 PM
It's so difficult to recommend, not knowing you, so I'll focus on something you shared. My first suggestion, if you don't already have one, is to purchase (yes, I'm telling you to spend money!) a FOODSAVER. Scan your local supermarket fliers when they come out on Tues (sales start Wed), and plan what you're going to eat based on what is on sale. If there is a particularly excellent sale, stock up (but don't overdo it). For instance, Chuck Roast was on sale recently for $2.99/lb at my local store. If that is a cut of meat you would use often, purchase 2. Make one for the week, and freeze the other using your Foodsaver (which is excellent - no freezer burn at all). If the larger package of boneless chicken breasts is less per lb. buy it... make some for the week and freeze the balance.
Also knowing what to make helps. A flank steak is no longer inexpensive (it was years ago). Buy it when it goes on sale. You can feed a lot of people with one since you slice it very thinly against the grain. You can marinate it and grill it or you can use it in a stir fry with lots of vegetables ... and serve over rice. That will make your protein go further.
I don't mean to tell you things you may already know and do... these things just came to mind right away.
Enjoy your retirement. I'm sure you've earned it.
05-01-2019 01:38 PM
I am newly retired as well, although I still work part time doing other things so as to bring in some income. I hope you don't mind my saying, but $800 a month on groceries seems like an awful lot to me. I generally spend around $300 for my husband and myself. I shop local discount stores such as Price Rite, Ocean State Job Lot, Aldees, and Trader Joes when I can. I am trying to eat les meat these days and use more vegetables. We do go out to eat, but not regularly, perhaps once a month if that. My husband tends to spend more money going out on his own and buying wine which I don't drink, only occasionally if out with friends or celebrating something. There is always a sale/discount section in the produce of the local stores I shop and I always look there first.
Where I fail is the temptation to buy things from TJ MAXX or Marshalls now and then, but trying to be very careful about that and not spending needlessly. I also shop at consignment stores for clothes and shoes now and then, but I find most of us have plenty and need not buy more. At our age, we all should be downsizing anyway. I do spend money on my grandchildren and children now and then, particularly at Christmas and birthdays. Good luck with your budget, I know its not easy on a fixed income.
05-01-2019 01:39 PM
Here's what works for me. First, have a budget and allow a little "wiggle" room for stock up sales or miscellaneous expense that happens.
I am retired but my husband is still working for a few more years. We have dogs but our kids are adults. My food budget is much less than yours. I clip coupons/ shop slaes and stock up on our favorite items . I found that I can get more groceries for less by shopping the weekly sale items that we use/like. You will be surprised at the savings if you do this.
I also am very mindful of all of our utilities. Remembering to shut off lights and water, etc. I switched over to LED bulbs inside and outside and it has made a difference in $$. I also have solar lighting outside instead or running the flood lights. This also keeps me on track with our usage. I'm a big believer of the budget plan for all the utilities that offer it. This makes it easier to keep your budget.
Decide on your "real" list of "needs" vs. "wants". Everyone needs a treat once in awhile but if you want to keep a budget that can't mean every week. The longer you do this, the easier it becomes.
Shop sales for upcoming holidays, birthdays, etc. I do this way ahead of the occasion so that I have almost everything done two weeks ahead of the special date. It takes the stress and expense from the event.
Give yourself an "allowance" for the weeks gas expense, etc. and keep to that amount. Apply any savings to a piggy bank or toward the next week's allowance. This $$ can be used for gas, movies, ice cream truck for the grandkids, etc.
Hope some of these work for you like they do for me.
05-01-2019 02:03 PM
Like the other posted suggested buy non-pershible items when they are on sale and stock up so you don't have to pay full price. Referring to paper towels, TP, etc. Watch the sales and shop at that store. Plan your meals around which meat or fish, etc. is on sale that week. Suggestion for a Food Saver is excellent as you can buy in the family pack (a lot cheaper per pound) and freeze them in amounts you will use. The small food saver (which I have) has gone way down in price Was close to $100. and I think some places have it for closer to $50. now. Check around. I also thought the amount of $800. a month for two people was quite high. I almost never pay full price for anything. I watch the sales. Also, use your leftovers for another meal or two.
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