There are many ways to save money at home. One of the expenses that you can cut is food costs. Treating yourselves with eating out is not problem in itself but when you do them 2-3 times a week then they start to become costly. You want to eliminate some of these expenses and prepare items yourself to get real savings at the end of the year.
Your saving plan starts with tracking all your spending. To record your expenses you will need a notebook. Use this as a tool for recording everything that you buy to the last penny — no matter how small your purchase is. Do this for at least 1 month or until you know where your money is going.
Before you start evaluating ways to save money at home from food costs, start tracking your finances first.
Understanding Your Spending Habits
The discipline of recording every purchase can be quite painstaking. But this is a good way to help you to break your bad spending habits. Slowly you’ll start to see where your money is going. You are also going to learn about how you spend money and for what.
Once you realize how much money you have wasted on unimportant items you might be angry at yourself. You might get shocked when finding how much money you spend in a year on items such as for dinner with friends. For example, if you take 50 dollars as the average cost for a dinner for 2 at a restaurant, you can take that same 50 dollars and cook a great meal for 5 or 6 people.
If you feel angry for allowing this to happen then it is good start for you to change your situation. You will want to prioritize your spending and cut out many expenses that you don’t really need.
Many Good Ways to Save Money at Home on Food
1. Eating Out Vs Eating at Home
Meeting up with friends for dinner is a pleasurable thing to do. But dinners out can quickly mount up to serious cash, especially if you dine out 2-3 times a week.
In an Italian restaurant, the price for a main dish is about 12 dollars and appetizers can range anywhere from 6 to 10 dollars. A bottle of wine that serves between 3-4 glasses is 20 dollars. For 4 people, you can expect to spend 100 dollars on a relatively small dinner without desserts or tips. This means over 1000 dollars a month are the estimated amounts of money “wasted” on restaurant food.
Actually you can cut costs while still maintaining an active social life. You may want to suggest your friends come over to your place for dinner than going out. There is a good chance that they will take you up on the offer and you’ll also find preparing a dinner party for friends very fulfilling.
You could prepare an Italian meal for 4 people for half of the above amount. For the same 12 dollars you spent on one serving of the food, you could purchase enough ingredients to feed your friends. You can also buy the same bottle of wine that the restaurant charged you 20 dollars for about 8.
2. Coffee at Home Vs Local Coffee Shop
Most of us start our day off with coffee. When consumed at home this isn’t a problem however, most of us will stop off at a local coffee shop as a ritual for starting and getting through the day.
Specialty coffees bought from the Starbucks can cost 5 dollars per day or more. When multiplied over a year, this can cost you 1500 dollars.
Try to brew your own coffee in the morning. Place your coffee in a large cup that you can get from one of the coffee retailers. Brewing your own coffee will only cost you a fraction over the year than purchasing coffee drinks from retailers. This is the money you could put for better use.
3. Take Your Own Lunch Vs Cafeteria
Dine in your work’s cafeteria is more economical that eating out for lunch. The average cafeteria lunch costs about 5 dollars per day. For 250 workdays in a year, this can add up to 1250 dollars.
You can save a substantial amount of money by taking your own lunch in. It takes only minutes to prepare a good lunch for yourself and will likely be a much cheaper and healthier option as well. Again, you could put the saving for better use.
Ways to Save Money at Home and Benefit from Your Efforts
Having friends over for dinner and drinks is a great way to cut back the costs and still have a social life. If you socialize with the same group of people, suggest taking turns. By doing this all of you will save on entertainment and enjoy some excellent times together.
You can save nearly 90% of the 1500 dollars by brewing your own coffee and taking it with you. Simply put the home brewing coffee to paper cups you got from the shops. You won’t notice the difference in taste but you will notice the difference in cost.
You could be spending close to 1200 dollars a year when purchasing lunches at work’s cafeteria. By preparing lunches and taking them with you, you could probably save 90% of this money. There is also the added benefit of having what you choose.
Get more ways to save money at home.