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If you’ve noticed your grocery bill slowly increasing each week you are certainly not alone.
Some shoppers have reported seeing an increase across items on 70 per cent of their shopping list, with price increases of 50 cents to $2 extra per item.
So with the cost of so many grocery items increasing, how do you even start to save money? Savvy shopper and mum-of-four Jasmine Williams may just have the answer.
The Brisbane mum tells Yahoo Lifestyle she made a change when her fortnightly grocery bill went from $350 to at least $500 shopping at Coles and Woolworths.
“I just wanted to save and get more for my money,” she says, adding she decided to share her success with others on the popular Facebook group Markdown Addicts Australia.
“I wanted to help people by giving them my tips on how I’ve been able to shop smarter, save money, and still provide for my family.”
Jasmine decided to shop around instead of heading to mainstream retailers. And it seems the switch has paid off.
“I’ve found some amazing deals from different places, you just need to know where to look,” she shares.
“Luckily I’ve found a way to stock up as things aren't looking like they are getting better anytime soon and I needed a cheaper way to shop for my family.”
How does she find the best deals?
The secret to her success is all about thinking outside the box and shopping around for the best price.
Once she finds items at the right price, it's a matter of stocking up on toiletries, freezer and cupboard items.
But the key is to only purchase what you know you need, nothing extra.
Some of the Brisbane stores at which Jasmine found exceptional bargains include Tribe of Judah in Slacks Creek, Golden Circle in Capalaba and ASM Meats in Capalaba. She says there are similar stores across each state.
Other stores with good savings included Chemist Warehouse, Big W, Catch, Amazon and Costco - particularly for fuel.
Since avoiding the major retailers and stocking up, Jasmine says she has spent a total of $1,200 but had enough toiletries, freezer and cupboard items to last her family nine to 12 months.
“Luckily I could use my AfterPay for most places so it's pretty much like me going shopping each fortnight anyway,” she says.
“Last fortnight all I spent in store for fresh fridge items was $30.”
Jasmine's top budget tips
Here are Jasmine’s top tips to follow when shopping around and bulk buying.
1. Write a list of what you want to stockpile like toiletries, for example, to keep yourself on track. There’s no point in buying things you don't need or won't use.
2. If you have an idea of rough prices you usually spend on items, make a list and compare prices in each store. This way you can work out if you’re saving or paying the same. This will get easier the more you do it and you’ll be able to spot a good deal.
3. Stick to a budget of what you know you can spend. Don't go putting yourself in debt just to stockpile.
4. Here's the fun part - go hunting for those specials and check out places in your area that you wouldn’t normally think to go to. Every state has some bargain outlets or farmer's markets. Add yourself to the store’s Facebook pages too, so you never miss a good deal!
5. As soon as you get down to the last three items of each thing, restock it so you never run out.
Shoppers love her advice
Jasmine says she was totally overwhelmed by the response to her tips.
“The reaction I got from the post was amazing, to help that many people and make their life a little easier just by giving a few tips made my day,” she says.
"I hope it really helps so many Aussie families."
Fellow shoppers applauded her bulk-buy method, with some even sharing their own tips for saving during these ‘tough times’.
“I'm the same, I have cupboards full. I buy the specials and if it's a good special I buy more than one. I also have the freezer full and keep a list of what's in it,” one person said.
“We are a family of 6. And before Covid, I had 2 cupboards full of stuff. When something we use is half price I'll buy at least double of it,” added another.
Others suggested growing your own herbs, shopping at local Asian grocery stores for cheaper vegetables, shopping at farmer’s markets and local butchers and getting cleaning supplies from Aldi.
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