‘It’s awful’: Families are losing $5,200 on inflation this year. Here’s how to curb your costs.
SPOKANE, Wash. — Families need an extra $5,200 to make ends meet this year, according to Bloomberg Economists. Inflation is at a 40-year high, and people are looking for ways to curb costs.
A Gallup Poll shows nearly one in five Americans say inflation is the most important problem facing the U.S. today.
“Oh, it’s been awful,” said Linda Strom. She’s a Safeway shopper and continues to live in sticker shock. “I got a few things. noodles — I mean for crying out loud, these noodles were a lot.”
Gas, shelter, and food drove the inflation this past month, according to the Consumer Price Index.
“We have to understand what’s happening right now in order to tweak or change things in the future,” said Kumiko Love, an accredited financial counselor and author of “My money My way.”
Love has made her brand and business as the “Budget Mom.” She advises consumers and says managing your food budget goes a long way towards managing your finances.
“The great thing is is our food budget is something that we do have control of,” Love said. “We may not be able to control how much our mortgage is, but we can control how much we spend on food, and that’s critical.”
A critical mistake a lot of us make is buying the cheapest product you see.
“How much money you’re paying per ounce, rather than the overall retail price. What looks more affordable actually might not be when you’re looking at the units,” she added.
Love suggests shopping online to see a breakdown of the per unit price, and you can avoid splurge shopping at the checkout line.
Here are some more of Love’s tips to combat inflation:
1. You need to plan ahead. Meal prep, so you know what groceries you’ll need every week and how much they’ll cost. Plan your car trips, too. Gas isn’t getting any cheaper, so unnecessary trips to the store or for errands will add up.
2. Prioritize being a smart shopper. You can slash 10 to 20% from your grocery bill by choosing store brands and generic options instead.
Learn more about smart ways to save HERE.
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