If you see me at my local Walmart Supercenter putting items into my shopping cart, you’ll probably hear me say a number to myself as I put each item in. No, I haven’t gone crazy, I’m keeping track of the spending I’m accumulating.
Here’s what I do:
I usually allot myself a $100 budget each week. Since Florida has a 7 percent sales tax, I know that as I count the prices of grocery items, I can’t exceed a count of 93 and risk going over the budget.
Say a gallon of milk is $3.29. I count that as 4 in my count of 93. I always round up and never round down, because when you round down you’re giving things a lower price value than what actually exists. If you always round up, you can’t make a mistake when you line up at the check-out counter. Every time I grab an item, I update the count in my head, so I’m going, “3, 6, 13, 17, 20, 23…”
If I can’t find the price of an item, I simply don’t get it. Walmart used to be good at having scanners around the store where you can do price checks, but they seemed to have slacked off on that front in the last decade or so.
If Harry (my pet cat) needs something, like litter, food, or whatever, I don’t count that against my $100 budget. I have a separate budget for that.
It’s pretty simple, really. I will occasionally use the calculator on my IPhone if I go to the store at an odd hour (usually very early in the morning for me), and when I get to the count of 93, that’s it, I’m done.
Just thought I’d share that. Might help you out if this is one of your chores.