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05-01-2019 02:03 PM - edited 05-01-2019 05:01 PM
You’re only spending $25 a day on food for 2 people. That does NOT seem extravagant to me.
Only you know your spending and where you can cut corners. Good luck
05-01-2019 02:08 PM
I agree $800 a month is a lot for two people. Are you including Deli items, precut veggies, cleaning,paper and laundry supplies in that figure? Any time you have quick fix items that are pre done or easy you pay dearly for the labor. Some items like muffins are easy to make from scratch and cheap. One can even make your own mixes for bisquits and cookies. Shop only once a week as running into a store continually ads up as one picks up more items Make a list and stick to it unless a really good deal.Buying in bulk may or may not save money it depends? Know your prices per unit and how often you use, like the item if it will pay?
I plan my meals around the Ads and seasonal items. I know a lot when stores will feature foods. Right now is Cinco De Mayo so one finds items for tacos etc on sale including ground beef. If you have a freezer make use of those sales and Food Saver bags as one poster suggested. Make ahead and freeze extra meals. My store has a freezer where they put meat about to expire. Half price steaks. yum.. all half price Tomatoes that are not the bestsize or if a bruise go to the Ugly fruit bin. I bought a bag of tiny lemons last week just right for tea. $1.00 a bag and I check when I stop in .Farmers Markets will be around mid summer and help with fresh produce and cheaper.
I make soups alot which is great for one or two people. They are nutricious easy to heat up, filling and stretch a whole chicken or ham bone and leftover scraps. I made a Caulflower soup with cheese I grated this week with a cauliflower on sale from last week. It will last me for six lunches at least. You have the time now which is a plus time to plan and do more from scratch. Check on line for ideas for meals and receipes. You have more time to do this and it is actuallly fun. I have even found some receipes here on the Blogs that were good and tested. Look up a budget for food plans low, moderate and high to see what is to your needs for your family size to get an idea of what is normal.
Have fun and look at it all as a game to see how much you can and do save! I am lucky to be financially secure but dont want to throw away my money either.
05-01-2019 02:17 PM
Chicken. Buy on sale and boil (simmer), roast or grill. Take the meat off the bones and use that, then simmer the bones and skin along with a carrot and a stalk of celery and some onion for broth for soup. Save ends of celery and carrots and onion scraps for the broth.
Eggs! Great and cheap. Fold in potatoes and leftover veggies and it is a frittata! Or an omelet.
Save any veggies left over (a few peas, beans left over) and use them in the chicken soup.
Have soup several times a week. Black bean, pinto, taco, veggie, etc. Pasta is also good too--especially the whole wheat or bean flour ones with more protein.
Buy roasts on sale if you have a kitchen aid mixer, get the attachment and make your own ground beef. It should taste as good as steak and be lean enough to be healthy.
I have started to wonder if a less expensive bread machine is economical beause good bread is expensive now. But you'd have to enjoy it as a hobby. If you are interested, I'll bet you could pick one up at a garage sale or resale shop. Cuisinart makes good ones I know.
05-01-2019 02:27 PM - edited 05-01-2019 02:34 PM
05-01-2019 02:28 PM
I agree with the poster on getting a foodsaver. I retired in December, but found something part-time for extra money. I also suggest, if you can afford it, buy a freezer. I am single and have had a freezer for years. Like a previous poster stated buy in bulk and freeze. When chicken goes on sale I stock up and put in extra in foodsaver bags. During the holidays when they have turkey breasts on sale, I buy an extra one and put it in the freezer. I also do this in the summer, especially when blueberries are lower priced. They are really easy to freeze and then I have them all during the winter.
This year I plan on planting a few tomato and green bean plants. Then I will freeze the extra tomatoes and green beans. I also have a Sam's Club membership and buy cleaning and paper products in bulk.
05-01-2019 02:30 PM - edited 05-01-2019 02:37 PM
Aldi for most grocery items
Dollar General for paper products, including greeting cards
Make a grocery list weekly. Plan your menu and shopping around what is on sale.
Limit spending on clothing. Plan trips and errands in advance to save on gas.
Drink more water and limit soda and booze purchases.
Eat less. Maybe two meals a day and a light lunch or dinner.
Cut back on cable, premium TV channels., etc to just basic needs.
It's spring. Shop yard sales and thrift stores.
Limit/ eliminate newspapers and magazines.
Sell stuff you don't need.
Do not buy expensive, premium brands of most things. Try generic and bargain brands.
Give up memberships, including Prime, etc. unless you use them daily or at least weekly.
See if you can find homeowners and auto insurance that's just as good as what you have for less. I do this every year.
Pay bills online. Save on postage.
Find a cheaper cell phone plan and lose your land line.
Have as much fun saving as spending! Good Luck. Consider every little bit saved a victory. Try to save $25.00/week on groceries- that $100.00/ month and over $1000.00 a year!
I respectfully disagree about using cash at the grocery store. Use a no annual fee credit card with at least 1.5% cash back on purchases. That's my Christmas $ every year.
Spend time and less money on the young grands. Read, garden, bake, craft, etc. Let their parents do the spending on them. No guilt.
05-01-2019 02:33 PM
Are there specialty things that you are buying at the grocery store? I ask because $800/month for two people seems like a lot, to me. If there are sundry type things, like personal care items, buy them elsewhere. They will be less expensive. Use coupons.
05-01-2019 02:34 PM
@Buyornot7As a long-time retiree, I'd suggest that if you and DH haven't done a thorough survey of your total spending, you should do that ASAP. Your bank, credit union, your broken, or one of the online services like Quicken or Mint offers spreadsheets that remind you what to include.
Once you see right in front of you what your financial reality is, you can more easily see where you personally could cut a little or a lot and you also can see what's most important to you to try to keep in retirement.
Once I had my own picture, I worked first on the larger recurring expenses that bothered me. I was able to cut $250 from my cellphone bill and %170 from my auto insurance. I did that just by asking for a review and in neither case did I lose any service with the lower price.
As for discretionary spending - I stopped buying new jewelry almost completely over 6 years ago. That's been my best path to diverting money where I really want or need it, but it was seeing on my spreadsheet what I had been spending that got me to change. Follow the money isn't just for the crime shows!
05-01-2019 02:36 PM
As others have said, hard to give any suggestions without knowing more about you. I agree with others who have pointed out that $800/month on grocerites for 2 people is high. DH and I spend less than half of that although we do eat out a couple of times a month.
One thing I didn't see mentioned is if you have 2 cars, get rid of one. That will save a lot of money.
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