Groceries

The One Month Coupon Strategy: A Really Clever Way to Make Coupons Worthwhile

Many people don’t bother to clip coupons for various reasons, mostly revolving around the belief that a fifty cent coupon doesn’t make it worth the effort. On the surface, I agree – without a very clever coupon strategy, it’s probably not worth the effort. About two months ago, I was talking about this very fact …

Categories: Food, Frugality, Groceries

Getting Over The “Taboo” Of Generics And Store Brands

Many Americans (including many of my friends) are conditioned by many years of marketing to select name brand products at the store. They’ll skip right by the generic rice puffs and buy the identical Rice Krispies for a dollar more per box. They’ll skip by the 100% store brand juice and pick up Juicy Juice, …

Healthy, Cheap, Tasty, and Quick: The Grocery Store Grand Slam and Eight Tips on How To Achieve It

Most food purchases at the grocery store boil down to one of four factors: Is it healthy? Is the food low in fat and provide good nutritional quality? Is it devoid of chemicals of mysterious origin? I also include ethical issues here, such as buying from local traders and such – healthy in a different …

Categories: Food, Groceries, Shopping

Comparison Shopping: Comparing The Internet To What’s On Your Store Shelf

For about the last year, my wife and I have purchased several household items in bulk from Amazon. Not only is the shipping free, but we don’t pay sales tax and we rack up lots of bonus points on our Amazon card by doing this. Our philosophy is that if Amazon has the same or …

Categories: Groceries, Shopping

Seven Reasons Why I Chose Sam’s Club Over Costco

In the recent past, I mentioned that our new home’s location has a Sam’s Club and a Costco almost the same distance apart, and now that we will finally have storage space, the opportunity to really take advantage of warehouse shopping became clear. To decide which one we would go with (a significant decision, because …

Categories: Groceries, Shopping

How To Pick Out A Grocery Store After Moving – Or If You’re Looking To Save A Few Dollars

Where I live, there are no large grocery stores in a twenty mile radius (there are two small “town” groceries that are fine for incidentals, but their prices are rather high and their selection is limited). However, right outside of that radius are several different options for grocery shopping. When I first moved to the …

Categories: Groceries, Shopping

Personal Finance 101: Grocery Store Math

Simple Math to Help You Save Recently, I received a lengthy email from a reader who had a ton of basic personal finance questions contained within. I thought it might be interesting to start an irregular “personal finance 101″ series to answer and explain some of her questions. This question isn’t from the long email, …

Five Minute Finances #3: Make A Grocery List

Five Minute Finances is a series of tips on how you can save significant money or reorganize your financial life in just five minutes. These tips appear Monday, Wednesday, and Friday on The Simple Dollar. Ever had to face down a $150 grocery bill? I have, and the reason was usually that I entered the …

Deconstructing A Television Advertisement: The Lesson Of Robert Goulet

Given the slickness of modern advertising, many people often view ads strictly as entertainment, when in fact they are intelligently packaged items designed to use various methods into tricking you into buying your product. I find myself often guilty of this, as I was during the Super Bowl this past weekend when I fell in …

Photo Diary #1: A Trip To The Grocery Store

This morning, I went grocery shopping with my son and took my digital camera along to record the experience of grocery shopping with a penny-pincher. Let’s see how it went – maybe we’ll both learn something. Welcome to Hy Vee! I went shopping at the Hy-Vee grocery store in Ankeny, Iowa, a northern suburb of …

The Correlation Between Saving Money And Losing Weight

Over the past few months, I’ve discovered an amazing correlation between my debts and my waistline: they’re both shrinking. Here’s how it happened. I started making a monthly “food budget,” where I decided to cap my monthly spending on all food, whether it be eating out or eating at home. Each month, I’ve tightened the …

Categories: Food, Frugality, Groceries

Staple Foods You Should Always Have On Hand

One of the greatest money savers is cooking at home. You can often prepare tasty, simple foods at home very easily and quickly and with minimal cost; I regularly make meals that take less than ten minutes of preparation time, feed the whole family, and cost only a dollar or two. Disclaimer: One of my …

Categories: Food, Frugality, Groceries

Money For Nothing: Five Ways To Put Money In Your Pocket With Zero Effort

Many people think about saving money, but decide that it’s too much work or it interferes too much with their lives. I’m usually this way, too; I’d rather not think about it when I’m hanging out with friends or spending time with family. I’m also not a big investor, so I don’t exactly plan on …

The Road to Financial Armageddon #9: The Road to Recovery

Yesterday, I described my financial meltdown, when I reached a point where there was more money going out each month than coming in with no real hope for redemption without a change from within. Then, thanks to some inspiration, I made that change. The first thing I did was I laid out every single expense …

10 Firefox Plugins That Save You Money

For those of you out there who are still using Internet Explorer, there is another option that won’t open your computer to all sorts of security holes. Better yet, it will automatically kill most pop-up windows and, when you switch to it, it will incorporate all of your bookmarks from Internet Explorer. I switched years …

The Author of The Simple Dollar Admits to Being an Idiot

That’s right, readers, I’m an idiot. There’s really not much more to say other than that. I am capable of coming up with some useful ideas and combining them into sensible plans, but in terms of putting them all together… well, the best I can say is that sometimes you have to learn from your …

Bought A Flawed Product? Here’s The Best Way To Handle It

Once every few months, I will purchase an item at the store, take it home, and discover a serious problem with it. The bread has a very odd taste, or the tortilla chips are very stale, or the salsa is very very watery, or the Glade plug-in doesn’t work. Most people I know react to …

Categories: Groceries, Shopping

The Art of Buying in Bulk

Many people simply go into a store, look for the items they want, and leave. Others (those who are a bit savvier) go into a store, find the item they want, compare all of the sizes, and buy the one that is the cheapest per unit. These people get a lot of bang for their …

Categories: Frugality, Groceries

Zen and the Art of the Grocery List

Supermarkets are designed to mess with your mind. I believe firmly that they are designed by a room full of middle management folks, sitting in an office somewhere with their coffee and suits, chuckling over the tricks they’re pulling on the populace. Stores are often organized so that the most commonly purchased items are on …