This Hack Can Help You Find Hundreds Of Dollars Each Month

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If you’ve ever taken the time to categorize your monthly spending, chances are you had a similar reaction that I did when I realized how much we spend on food each month — disbelief with a side of regret, anyone? It’s just the hubs and me for now, and we are pretty good about eating in, at least compared to a lot of our DINK (dual income, no kids) friends, so I’m always shocked when our grocery spending sometimes tops what I’d expect a family of four to spend.

The fact is, food is expensive and who wants to walk around the grocery store with a calculator? There are ways to counteract that by planning your menu around the grocery store sales, buying in bulk, etc., but sometimes life is just too busy or you have to go with what’s available during a pandemic.

Whether you’re cooking more at home due to shelter-in-place orders or just trying to find some ways to free up some extra cash, try this:

Save Money Each Month

One week per month, skip the grocery store and instead eat what’s already on hand. Then take the money you don’t spend on groceries and transfer it to your savings account. The only number you need to know is what you spend each week, on average. Pro tip: this is where most people go wrong when they try to save money – they do well and the cutting back, but they neglect to go the extra step by deliberately moving the specific amount they’ve cut back into savings, and a lot of the “saved” money just ends up getting spent on something else.

This hack alone could boost your retirement savings by over $250,000 if you stick with it over the years or literally shave years off your debt payments if you use it to get out of credit card debt sooner.

That’s it! No coupon clipping needed. It may require a little bit of creativity in the kitchen, but I always find it’s easier than it seems — digging out those jars of interesting sauces I impulse bought at Trader Joe’s when panic-shopping or finally using that extra cooked orzo I froze feels so good and budget-friendly.

You can also use Supercook, a website that lets you input ingredients you have on hand, then suggests different recipes. Plus, it helps to clear your pantry, fridge, and freezer of food that may otherwise end up in the trash — a double financial bonus!

Disclaimer: The information in this article is not intended to encourage any lifestyle changes without careful consideration and consultation with a qualified professional. This article is for reference purposes only, is generic in nature, is not intended as individual advice and is not financial or legal advice.

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