I have found a store that I really like - Grocery Outlet. Since going there I have been able to save so much money. I am going to try a new goal- that is spending $250 on the food budget. I was talking to my husband about it last night. It will require stopping at a few different stores.
1. I will get a big load of food from grocery outlet - $100
2. I will get meat and cheese at Sams - $100
3. I will get milk at Aldi. So far it has always been cheaper for us there. I think the most it has been is $3.00 a gallon.
If I have money left I will even include diapers, toiletries, and dog food into this budget.
So far we have sold my van, gotten two used suburbans (which only require tune up and ac charges) for $3000. $3000 for two vehicles. I do not drive alot so a used car does not scare me and for a trip I can rent a car because of the money I am saving with no car payment or if we go with my mom I will share in her expense of gas and ride with her.
So the expenses we have left are around $2000 credit card and the mortgage which we would love to pay early. And we still are trying to sell Brian's truck. Getting rid of the truck will save us - $408 month.
Food bill has been lowered atleast $100 a month because of Grocery Outlet. There is not alot of variety but sometimes that really is not a bad thing. Oh and I forgot to say that we are getting these basket of veggies at our local farmers market for $5 until our garden comes in so we spend like $15 on fresh veggies which is so,so,so much cheaper than in the store. Our electric has been lowered $50 this year and joined this program where they turn your electric off so many minutes a day which is $75 credit a year :). The water went down $20 every other month. The DSL is going to be $29 from $118 (phone/internet). We cancelled the phone and will just use cell phones. And if we cancel the tv and go with netflix we shave another $90 off our bills. I do think this is a great idea but I still am hesitant to actually cut the tv cord. :) That is silly though because I know that all my shows are on the computer and we have gone three years without tv so I should just cut the cord.
Money saved in one year:
1. Electric - $675
2. Water- $120
3. phone/dsl - $1068
4. cable (if we do it :)) - $1080
5. Groceries- $1200
6. Truck- $4896
That is a total of $8919 a year. Wow, I had no idea until I just added that up that those bills had such an impact. Of course, that includes the cable and truck(but they will be gone soon) :) This is very motivating. WOW - $8919.
So I challenge all of you to look at your budget and see where you can cut because I guarantee that most of you can cut your budgets and make a significant impact on your budget.
The best news which is not official is that my husband might be getting a really good job. He owns his own business which has been a REAL challenge since the economy went south. He has struggled on and off for 2-3 years. There was a chain of events that led to this job. He was going to be remodeling a kitchen. He had checked on cabinets and the guy there told him about possible subcontract work at this homebuilder place in town. When he called the owner, whom he has done work for before said he might have something for him. Yesterday, the guy all but offered him a job. I am praying that this works out for him and is a very positive change. Right off the bat he would eliminate his gas bill and vehicle wear and tear because of company truck/gas. That would save us $300-$400 a month. :) It is perfect timing because at the same time the kitchen backed out because they might be relocated through their job. So aside from a few smaller jobs he does not have anything big to clear off his schedule. But, it is a lot he could do on the side. That would mean weekend work to finish some obligations but it would also mean more money to pay off the rest of our credit card which means by the fall our only debt will be the mortgage and my student loan which is deferred until January. Of course, with everything else paid off we could pay that off very quickly. it is right at $9000. Just remember to explain to your kids thoroughly that if they take a student loan - they have to pay it back, so avoid it at all costs.:)
Just keep motivated to pay off debt and live a free life. You can do it. :)
Oops, forgot one thing. My husband was fortunate enough to borrow $3500 (business related) from my dad in March which I DEFINITELY want to repay by the end of the year. :) That is one thing I forgot to include in my list.
I still cannot believe we save almost $9000 by cutting all of those things. WOW