Money Saving Monday Tip #4 – Keep a Price Book
A fews weeks ago we decided to start keeping track of the prices for various staple items we purchase. Things like: pampers, dog food, paper towels, toilet paper, milk, bread, etc.
Prior to doing this, we would purchase them at the store we thought had the best price or we would just assume that the prices really weren’t much different. Turns out we were wrong. By recording the prices in a “price book” and keeping track of the item’s prices by store, we realized various items were definitely cheaper at certain places.
A price book can be a simple notebook of whichever size you prefer. I happen to have a Blackberry 8700c and use it’s notebook feature to record the various prices. Either solution would work, just don’t forget it when you go shopping!
When we started doing this, we began to notice that not only were prices different, but different stores carried the same items in various different quantities. This was a surprise to me. In order to get a fair comparison, we record the price at a per item price.
Here’s an example. Our daughter is still in diapers and diapers are fairly expensive (we use Pampers). Using my price book, I noted the following:
Wal-Mart Pampers size 3 64 count $24.97 or .39 cents each
Sam’s Pampers size 3 124 count $34.88 or .28 cents each
Amazon.com Pampers size 3 160 count $39.79 or .25 cents each
Another advantage of having a price book is the ability to see how much something is really on sale. We often purchase items in bulk if they are on-sale and don’t have a purchase limit. The price book allows us to know what the normal price is and know if the “sale price” is truly a good deal or not.
The price book can also be used when creating your shopping list. It allows you to determine which items to get at which store so you can save the most amount of money.
If you aren’t using a price book, start using one today. It’s as simple as grabbing a Small Notebook and Pen. Each time you are at the store, check the price of those staple items and make updates to your price book. It’s a great way to save money and to know if you are getting the best deal or not.