Feb 11, 2011

Newly Nesting: Splurge vs Save

When to splurge and when to save? It's a question that many people have varying opinions on, but for a married couple financial matters can quickly become an issue. When it comes to budgeting my husband and I are on different ends of the spectrum. However, one of the things we differ on most revolves around grocery shopping. Yes, the simple task of getting groceries each week can turn into an all out war... my husband repping #TeamSplurge (or in his words "Team I like my shit to taste good" lol), while I rep #TeamSave.

His argument is that there's no such thing as "splurging" when it comes to food. In his book all food is a necessity and it doesn't matter the cost. His soul dies a little inside when I grab the generic brand bread, cereal or juice. He loathes the idea of buying the bread that simply states "bread" or "Cinnamon Squares" instead of Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

My theory? There are certain things worth splurging on, but when there's a sale or an opportunity to go cheap I will. I don't need to have name brand everything. I can grab store brand milk. Kashi is the only cereal that I won't go cheap on... everything else? Give me the store version. Fruit Os taste just like Fruit Loops to me lol. I'll also get store brand ice cream, cheese (though I prefer the store brand deli slice), and even store brand veggies. More often than not you're only paying for the "brand name" and very rarely does the quality differ greatly.

I think we all have our favorite foods that we'll splurge on, but for the most part everyone can agree that men are absolutely clueless when it comes to grocery shopping. For now, I have agreed to let him get his name brand cereal, but I still skimp on other things.

How do you handle grocery shopping in your household?


laundrygirl said...

Ohhh the grocery store! (You are quickly becoming a friend in my head.) My husband is the spender and I’m the saver so we often have this dilemma. When we grocery shop together, we always spend WAY more money than I want to or find necessary to spend. He starts tossing stuff in the cart just randomly and it drives me nuts as I stand there with my list and plan for meals to fix.
Ok, this may sound mean but here’s what I do. I try to go to the store without him. This isn’t too hard to do now; he got out of the habit of going with me after our first year of marriage. Now we only have the grocery store tug of war once in a while. Our biggest way of making it work for us both is that we shop at Costco and buy in bulk. Do you guys have a Costco or Sam’s Club type warehouse store? At Costco I can buy his favorite juice and cereal at a better price than the grocery store. I don’t know if it’s the same there but you can get cereal for less at Target than in the grocery store. We shop Target and he gets all excited about tossing 4 boxes of his favorite cereals in the cart… The other thing I use are the weekly sales papers for finding deals on things I don’t want to pay full price for (yet do the math to make sure it really IS a sale…)

At one point I bought containers for some stuff so he wouldn’t see the brand. For instance, I put juice in a pitcher, I transferred some stuff out of their packaging and into a ziplock bag and I put some dry items in big glass canisters. He did not taste the difference and yet I knew with some stuff he’d make a big deal about it not being a certain brand. This is a little sneaky but it worked.

Not all generics taste good so you have to pick and chose which ones you like and what feels not so worth it. For instance, no matter how many generic crackers I buy, I won’t compromise on laundry detergent…

South Loop Social Light said...

You're an absolute genius for disguising the brands with basic containers!! I may have to jump on that. When I shop I like to go to various stores to get good deals and my husband's attention span plummets. He's the type to be in and out and I like to take my time so we aren't getting ripped off. I don't think there's a sam's club or costco around us, but I do try to go to walmart/target for certain things, and the bigger grocery stores for other. It can really be hit or miss, but I'm definitely going to copy some of your sneaky (though genius) ways of hiding brands!!

T said...

I'm all about saving on groceries. I'm not a coupon clipper, but I do love a sale. Some things like toothpaste, peanut butter, dish detergent and cereal are not to be messed with. Everything else, especially sauces and canned good can be generic.

If I was in a couple and my husband wanted to splurge on groceries, I'd make him let me splurge in another area. (Which is clearly only hating us both, so let me pray about this tit for tat spirit ahead of of time).

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