When you watch how you spend your money on groceries and auto-related items, including fuel, maintenance, insurance, and repairs, you can save a lot of money. Shopping around for the best prices in both categories does take a little extra time, but the cost of that time is minuscule compared to what you save.
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Groceries & Food Shopping
Combining several tips on groceries allows you to save big on shopping trips. First, always make a list and never go into a store hungry. Buy only what you need and visit various stores, especially if you have coupons or discounts for those stores.
Next consider where you can get what you need for the best price. If you’re looking for a way to eat well but cut back on recipes and grocery lists, a service like Freshly, Home Chef or Green Chef could be for you. If you know what you want and need it brought to your home, you can save time and money by browsing what Stop & Shop Delivery or Food Lion can bring right to your door.
You can also save big by buying in bulk when items go on sale. Look for canned good sales, BOGO sales and other sales. For example, if a store drops pasta prices to $10 for 10, pick up 10 boxes of pasta. It lasts forever, especially if you take it out of the cardboard boxes and put it in airtight containers.
Find sales on cleaning products, paper goods, and even meat sales at warehouse stores such as Costco or Sam’s. Buy a few month’s worth of those products. Investing in a big freezer allows you to buy enough meat for a few months at a time. Just be sure to double wrap it in plastic wrap, then put it in freezer bags. Or, you can vacuum seal the meat to freeze it.
Automotive Maintenance & Parts
When it comes to maintenance and repairs, there are some things you can learn to do yourself, such as oil changes, detailing, and on some vehicles, changing plugs and wires. You can also check and top off your own fluids and check the air in your tires. When you need parts and services that you can’t do yourself, compare prices at places such as Advance Auto Parts, Auto Anything, and Tire Rack.
When it comes to auto maintenance that you can’t do or don’t want to do yourself, you can save big by shopping around. You do not have to take your vehicle to a dealership, especially for items such as tires and regular maintenance. Just be sure to save your receipts for warranty purposes – and to use for tax breaks if you use your vehicle for business.
Check your insurance policy, too. Make sure you aren’t over-insured or under-insured. Compare prices with different insurance companies. Check to see if your insurance company offers discounts for bundling home insurance, boat insurance, motorcycle insurance, or RV insurance.
Also check to see if your insurance company has a “safe driver” program where you might save on premiums if you go for a certain amount of time without getting into an accident.
Compare Your Expenses
After you change your spending habits, compare your weekly expenditures to previous weeks. Stash the money you save on groceries and auto expenses in your savings account and watch your savings increase over time.
About the Author: Cheryl Bowman has been writing on various topics since 2007. While she writes on many topics, including pets and food, her specialties are legal and automotive as she worked in both industries. Cheryl’s legal specialties are bankruptcy and family law, but she writes about criminal law and civil cases such as personal injury and real estate. You can find Cheryl on Writer Access.