Buying in Bulk – Saving or Overspending?

Ah, the great debate. Is buying in bulk wasteful or efficient? Well, only you have the authority to determine which of the two extremes applies to your household. Contrary to common belief, there isn’t a right or wrong way to go about buying in bulk. And, below, we’ll cover each of the viewpoints on the subject.

Convenience

If you go to a big box store that offers near wholesale prices on large quantities, it’s certainly appealing to simply pick up the largest package available and stock up while you can.

It’s unlikely that you’ll run out anytime soon, because you’ve picked up a few months’ worth of the items you’ll need. And, when you’re a busy professional trying to feed a family while still maintaining a sense of sanity, the surprise trips to the grocery store are best to be limited.

There’s nothing wrong with being convenient and efficient. In fact, many people would say that this is a smart practice. Yet, others would say that this is wasteful or even greedy behavior. But, in the bare bones, it’s all a matter of opinion, rather than fact.

Necessity

If you tend to run out of a specific item quite often, it’s natural to feel compelled to stock up on the items now before necessity strikes again. However, if the prices aren’t discounted, your last-ditch efforts to avoid a midnight grocery run just may end up causing you to unnecessarily overspend.

When you find yourself in this situation, pick up a quantity of maybe one or two more than you need just to be on the safe side. So what if the prices are a bit high that week? You’re only spending a few more dollars for the sake of avoiding dire necessity later on. Your quick thinking might save you that same few dollars in gas.

But, logic leads us to believe that when you stock your cart with overpriced items, you’ll pay an exorbitant fee at the register. In this case, it just may be best to wait until the items go on sale in order to buy in bulk.

Couponing

Avid coupon divas believe the following, “if it isn’t free or nearly free after the coupon, don’t buy it.” But, when the sales price matches up to a high value coupon, now is the time to buy.

If you match the right sale to a high value coupon that doubles the savings, you just may get the item free or for just pennies on the dollar. As if this scenario weren’t juicy enough, if you have a large quantity of such a sweet coupon, you can even buy in bulk without spending a dime!

This is the beauty of couponing – getting things for free, or nearly gratis. If you have a coupon stash large enough to help you purchase an item in bulk with little to no cost out-of-pocket, buying in bulk only makes sense, as long as you can use the items before the expiration date!

As you can see, there are many viewpoints to buying in bulk. Some people think it’s a wasteful practice. Others feel that, if they’re willing to spend the money to stock up for the sake of convenience, no harm is done. A coupon fanatic may be able to stock up for months for no cost at all.

In the end, the decision is yours. If you’re willing to take the time to match coupons to sales, more power to you. If you’re willing to spend a little more money upfront for convenience later, it might bring you some peace in your hectic life. Or, if you tend to make purchases based on necessity, a few bulk purchases might save you a midnight run to the grocery store.

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