How to Audit Your Grocery Bill in 7 Minutes (and Save Tons) – Yahoo Finance

Posted: January 4, 2020 at 12:54 am

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Its an area of your budget thats easy to overlook: the creeping costs of your monthly grocery bill. Maybeyoure accidentally buying duplicate cans of beans. Or consistently tossing (i.e.,wasting) the same bag ofwiltedlettuce from your fridge before finishing it. By taking just seven minutes to assess what youre really spending on food each week, youll not only gain a better understanding of your households groceryneeds but also determine where you cancut costs. (Hello, forever goal.)

Great, so how do I audit my grocery bill?Tostart, gatheryour grocery receipts from the past month. Next, tally the members of your household and jot down any special dietary needs (say, a food allergy or sensitivity) that need to be accounted for. An example:In your family of four, one person is avegetarian. Or one is gluten-free. This information will provide context for the next step,because you cant properly assess your food budget without first quantifying the number of mouths youre feeding and understanding the origins for any spending spikes.

Next, categorize your food spending. Is the bulk of your cash going to organic produce? Or are you dropping major bucks on fancy jars of tomato sauce for your penne-loving child? (Yes, were looking at you, Raos.) Separate the items on your list by food groupmeats, produce, snacks, etc.then total the costs. Note: This isnt a guilt tripits more about grasping where your money is going every time you visit the store.

The final step.Open your fridge. Check out your pantry. Whats in there thatsconsistently gobbledup? And whats continually going to waste?Maybe you have four cansof chickpeas that you forgot about but could easily sprinkleintoyour lunch salads over the next three weeks.Or perhaps you shelled out $7 for a stir-fry sauce that you never used and theexpiration date is drawing near. Whatever the items, take stock and add them to your list.

Now, the million-dollar question.Based on everything you wrote down, where can you save? In other words, could you pivot to buying store-brand pasta sauce? (Will your7-year-old notice a difference? Probably not.) Or, if youre going tospend more on organic meat, whats another areawhereyou can easily cut back? (Maybe you can mix in more vegetarian optionsa fewtimes a week to trim costs.)

The point of this exercise is to not only gut check your food spending but also your habits. NewYear, new you, right? An audit is not just good for your waistline, its also great for your wallet.

RELATED: The 10 Items That People Always Overspend on at the Grocery Store

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How to Audit Your Grocery Bill in 7 Minutes (and Save Tons) - Yahoo Finance

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January 4th, 2020 at 12:54 am

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