Guest Contributor: Christina Pay, USU Extension Assistant Professor
There are three shopping events each year in Utah that savvy shoppers look forward to with anticipation. These are known as case lot sales. Generally occurring in January, March and September, buying pantry items at case lot prices can save you money while helping you stock up on items you use on a regular basis. However, don’t be fooled. Without a plan you may end up spending more money than saving it, so follow the tips below to help you make your own plan to find the best case lot bargains.
1.Budget. Set aside an amount that your budget is comfortable with and put this towards case lot purchases. You shouldn’t go in debt while trying to save money. Remember these sales are held multiple times a year so plan accordingly.
2.Compare Prices. Do the math and figure out a product’s price per unit. (There are helpful calculators you can find online, such as Calcnexus.com/Grocery Calculator ) Larger quantities are not always cheaper. Additionally, comparing grocery store ads will help you determine which store offers the best case lot values.
3.Coupons. Another way to cash in on the savings is using coupons. Some grocery stores allow them while others do not, so it’s best to check beforehand.
4.Take Inventory & Make a List. Inventory your shelves so that you know what you are running low on. Then, make a detailed list, including estimated prices, so sticker shock isn’t an issue when you check out.
5.Buy What You Will Use. Remember to purchase only products that you will use. It defeats the purpose to get a great price on an item if you won’t ever use it. For example, it is not wise to decide to try something new by buying a case of it. That could quickly become a very wasteful purchase. Buying larger sizes of an item that won’t get used up is also not money smart. Finally, remember to keep the expiration date in mind, as well, and buy just enough in order to use a product up before it expires.
6.Single Items. Some stores allow you to get the case lot sale price on single items. This works well If you don’t have a lot of storage space or you may not want a full case of something.
7.Order in Advance. Call the customer service desk of the grocery store to see if you can order cases in advance. Some stores will allow you to do this which you then can pick up at your convenience.
8.Other Sales. Keep in mind that in November and December baking items usually go on sale saving you the need to purchase them during a case lot sale. You might also want to check out websites like My Grocery Deals to see weekly sale items at a variety of stores in your area which helps you to save year round.
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