Oct 5, 2018

How to Save Money on Your Essential Items

There are essential items that no household can live without: we’re talking gas for the car, groceries and the five cups of coffee that you simply cannot function without throughout the day.
Whenever we’re looking at areas to cut costs, essential items seem to be ringfenced. It’s almost like we can’t dare look at ways to save on items that we can’t do without. Instead, it’s the luxury activities such as meals out and the trips to movies that are the first to go to help save on spending.
It doesn’t have to be this way. While nobody would advocate trying to live without toilet paper or eating, there are some simple ways in which you can reduce just how much you are spending on items that you cannot live without.
Below are some of the ways of saving money on essential items today.
Stock Up on Discounted Items During Your Grocery Shop While They’re Cheap
One way to save money on your grocery shop is by taking real advantage of offers when they are on. You might see a “two for $5” offer on some candy you regularly buy for the kids and get two packs rather the one, but why stop there? Don’t just buy two; buy 20!
If it is something that you know you’ll be buying on your next grocery shop, then stock up on it while it is cheap. You’ll be saving money in the long run as these deals tend to last no more than a month, and it means you won’t have to buy the item again for some time. If it’s perishables, you can freeze half of what you purchase to enjoy later.


Take Advantages of Coupons
Before you head off to the grocery store, take the time to look through newspapers and magazines in order to find coupons for items that you know you are going to buy.
You might think it’s a waste of time for the sake of saving a couple of dollars, but if you can knock $10 off every grocery trip, that soon builds up over time to be a significant saving.
Make Sure You are Paying the Lowest Price at the Pumps
Buying gas isn’t cheap. Between January and May this year alone, the price of gas spiked 41 cents. Fuel companies have us over a barrel as they know that everybody who relies on a car has to pay whatever is required to keep that car moving.
You can look to save a little bit of money at the pumps though by filling up at the cheapest gas station in your area. There are a number of apps and websites out there that can point you in the direction of the gas station nearest to you which currently offers the lowest price per gallon.
Failing that, cleaning out your car can also reduce the amount of gas you burn through. Every 250 pounds on top of your car’s base weight can cost you an extra mile per gallon of gas. For more on how to make your car more economical, have a look at these 20 useful tips to improve your gas mileage.
Shop around for Medicines
When you get sick, you need medicines to make you feel better. That’s an inescapable fact of life. Unfortunately, medical treatment can cost a lot of money, and you probably think that your health is one area that you shouldn’t compromise in order to try and make savings.
You can, however, look to reduce the cost of medication by using a free drugs comparison service. There are a number of places online such as this site called eDrugSearch which allow you to compare prices on top selling medications, potentially saving up to 90% on prescription drugs in the process.
Carry Out Your Personal Business Online to Save Money on Postage and Printing
We live in an online world now to the point where about a quarter of American adults say they are almost constantly online. That can be good news when it comes to saving money in areas like printing and postage.
Instead of paying your credit card, utility, cell phone or cable bills via the mail, do it all online. It saves you splashing the cash on stamps and envelopes, and it is much less time consuming as well! The same is true when it comes to printing out documents needed to collect a parcel or tickets for a show. Most venues and businesses will accept a scannable code on a smart phone, which can save you money on ink and paper.
Bulk Buy Toilet Paper
We’ve already touched upon bulk buying groceries when offers come up, and you can take a similar approach to toilet paper without needing to rely on offers. Toilet paper come in monstrous pack sizes these days; you can buy anything up to a pack of 24 in one hit.
Not only will buying in such bulk save you money, but it can also help avoid the nightmare situation of having to run to the convenience store at the last minute because you’ve run out.
Make Your Own Coffee
There aren’t many people out there who can get through the day without coffee. Whether it’s one in the morning as a pick-me-up, one at 10 am as part of a mid-morning ritual, one just after lunch to get through the afternoon or one in the evening to stop you falling asleep by 7 pm, we’re a nation of coffee lovers.
Spending $3 a day on a cup of coffee (presuming you can survive on just the one!) might not seem like much, but it all adds up over the course of the year. You can eliminate this expenditure by making coffee at home rather than buying from a shop. If you invest in a coffee maker, you can produce a taste as good as your favorite barista at a fraction of the long-term cost, and it will save you time as there’ll be no more morning runs to the coffee shop.