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View Poll Results: Do you use a price book?
No, never heard of it 30 25.42%
No, heard of it but don't practice it 43 36.44%
I used to but I don't anymore 8 6.78%
Yes, I use a price book to save on groceries 12 10.17%
No, but I want to learn how 29 24.58%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 118. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 07-22-2005, 07:32 AM
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Anyone use a price book?

Does anyone here use a price book to track grocery store prices? Being the owner of this site, I know all kinds of ways to save money on groceries, but putting them into practice is an entirely different thing. I have started a price book as suggested in the book Miserly Moms, and I know this is a great way to learn how to shop smart. The author suggests setting up columns for the store, brand name, retail price, best sale price, and best unit price. Then she says to make the best sale price your price goal, and not to buy when it's higher than that.

Would love to hear from those that are currently using a price book, their methods, how they set up their book, etc.
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Old 07-22-2005, 10:20 AM
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I answered, "no I have never heard of one," but I do want to know what it is and where to get one.
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Old 07-22-2005, 11:26 AM
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I have used a price book. We have 3 main stores in our area: Giant Eagle, Krogers and Meijers as well as tons of others such as Aldi's, Walmarts and Gordon Food Service and Sam's Club ( canceled membership there since GFS is free).

The first three stores run advertised specials each week. I made a list of items we buy most often, and as I bought the item I put the size and amount and price from each store. Then when they run a special I could tell how much of a savings it really was or not.

I just used a index notebook. The tightwad gazettes have really good instructions on how to set up a price book.

I no longer use one because we shop 80% at Aldi's and GFS, their prices are always the same.
Anna
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Old 07-22-2005, 11:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FamilyCorner
I know all kinds of ways to save money on groceries, but putting them into practice is an entirely different thing.
I really agree with this statement! I have looked into making a price book before but it seems like a lot of work and quite frankly something that I wouldnt keep up with.

Im hoping to read some easy tips on how to make and keep up with one here.

Im really trying to save some money. I have been shopping to fill up our freezer so a price book would come in handy right now.

Im going to look up the book that's mentioned here too. ( Im going to have a big list of books to get at the library if I keep reading all of these threads!! )
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Old 07-22-2005, 01:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajrsmom
I really agree with this statement! I have looked into making a price book before but it seems like a lot of work and quite frankly something that I wouldnt keep up with.
Im going to look up the book that's mentioned here too. ( Im going to have a big list of books to get at the library if I keep reading all of these threads!! )
That's what I was afraid of too Tami. Not keeping up with it. What I have startede doing is I created an excel spreadsheet that will calculate these things for me. I have the following columns:

Store name
Brand/product
Size
unit (oz, lbs, etc)
retail price
best sale price
best unit price

I have the column for best unit price set to automatically calculate by taking the "best sale price" column and dividing it by the "size" column.

I have entered my receipts for the last two trips to the store and will just keep doing that. I think I will just override the last best price if I find another best price, instead of duplicating. I think that's the basic idea behind this concept.

As for the books, Miserly Moms mentioned above is really good, and the Tightwad Gazette is definitely an oldie but a goodie!
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Old 07-22-2005, 03:08 PM
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I have Miserly Moms on hold at the library. I've read through the 3 TGs---at times I thought that she really stretched things. I could probably stand to read through them again though.

I dont have Excel on my computer. Is there another easy way for me to do this? Is there any way to do this with MS Works or anything like that?

I really need to do something because I am shopping at Sams Club, Costco and local stores so I need to know where Im really getting the better deals.

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Old 07-22-2005, 03:19 PM
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When I was growing up my Great-Aunt would write down the prices she paid on the label to track price increases.

I've never started a price book but have thought about it especially for items that seem to last forever and I don't remember what the sale price was. I have thought that a small address book would be good to use so I could find the items quickly by product type. Just haven't started one yet. I did get as far as writing down the prices of things that I buy when a Super Wal-mart opened near by.

Certain things that I only buy on sale with coupons I know what a good sale price it i.e. Lipton/Rice-a-roni mixes go on sale for $.99 regularly anything under that is a super sale. Pork loins go on sale for $1.99 in my area so I buy one and have it sliced for boneless chops and a hunk for a roast.


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Old 07-23-2005, 11:47 AM
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chuckle

[QUOTE=RobertaD]When I was growing up my Great-Aunt would write down the prices she paid on the label to track price increases.

This reminds me that I am old enough (45) to remember when there weren't UPC codes and grocer's actually had to stick the price on the items and punch in the prices into the registers!!!

I put that I use a price list but I am really in the process of making/using it and couldn't decide which option best fit my situation. I use a palm pilot (old black, no backlight, no frills) with a program I downloaded into it called Handy shopper.
It is really great. You add your items and then there are categories lists like bread, dairy, meat and such and then the store, price, quantity, aisle, date, coupon, tax and you can customize to suit you. I like the way you can compare on site. It has a "need" feature so that you can mark the item to pick up next trip and mark it off as you get it. When you go to store you can just push a certain list button and see only your needs or find a certain item to check price. The down side for me is entering into the handheld. It would be easier if there were a compatible "spreadsheet" program that could transfer data from pc to palm. It is easier to enter on a pc. I just recently heard that there is something like that but I haven't checked into it.
I really like it but the data entry part takes time. I have been compiling mine since February of this year. I am not consistent with entries but what I do have so far is helpful. So much for my 2 pennies....
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Old 07-24-2005, 03:54 PM
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I started a price book about three different times, but it was a LOT of trouble, and I quit. Fortunately, I seem to have a very good memory when it comes to remembering which stores sell at the best price, and can tell if an advertised sale is really any good or not.

Having said that, allow me to confess that, as a general rule, I only shop at two stores: Food Depot(cost+10%), and Aldi's. Very, very seldom do I grace the doors of Kroger, and Publix even less. Wal-Mart is too far, and what I've seen there, well, I can do better elsewhere.
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Old 07-24-2005, 06:23 PM
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[QUOTE=jb829]Fortunately, I seem to have a very good memory when it comes to remembering which stores sell at the best price,


I notice sometimes that the items weight will change like boxed cereal or canned goods so I do a per ounce computation. I realized recently that the almond joys I purchase is still the same price but there are now only 8 in the package instead of 10; and the tomatoes are not 16oz. but 14.5oz. I wonder if the manufacturers think we won't notice if we just keep on buying since the price didn't change. Things like meat bought by the pound aren't as crucial.
I like to shop Aldi here as well but some of the convenience items can be higher than on sale at Kroger around here.
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