Inflation rates are higher now than they have been in the past 30 years. This pattern is causing tension for many Americans as they try to stretch their paychecks and make ends meet. How can the average shopper keep up with the rising cost of consumer goods? Take a few steps to prepare, and you can find yourself saving money while inflation heats up.
The first place you’re likely to see rising consumer prices eating into your paycheck is the grocery store. Grocery stores have the tightest margins of any retailer. Slight increases in shipping costs result in dramatic price hikes on bread and milk. Everyone needs groceries, too! You can’t avoid buying food.
When you go to the grocery store, shop the sales. Avoid purchasing items with low supply and high demand, as these will have the highest markups. Use coupons to get the best deals and compare prices between different stores in your city. Try to buy non-perishable goods in bulk when you can, as this will help you spend the least money in the long run.
Don’t think about just eating at restaurants instead of buying groceries, either. Higher food costs result in restaurants adjusting menu prices accordingly. Everything goes up when inflation hits!
Don’t pay higher prices for anything when inflation heats up. There’s no reason to spend more than you have before! Inflation will only impact you if you spend more.
If you’re a fan of shopping for things like clothes and video games, consider moving to secondhand purchases.
If you’re buying brand-new clothing or video games while the value of the dollar drops, you’re throwing your money away twice. New goods are always pricier, and secondhand items are just as good and can cost as little as half the price.
The same applies to cars! New cars are much more expensive than used alternatives. A new vehicle loses half its value in just three years. Why spend more money to say you were the first person to drive a car?
The more debt you have, the harder it is to catch up. It’s easy to miss a payment here or there, which can dent your credit and set your repayment plan behind schedule. Inflation makes this worse because your money won’t go as far between paychecks. Take out a consolidation loan to roll all your debts into a single bill.
This money move can get you a more favorable interest rate while streamlining your bookkeeping. Owing all of your debts to a bank is much easier to handle than dealing with countless creditors.