There are specific goods that I tend to “stockpile” when I see a real bargain – like canned goods, paper goods, cleaning supplies, toiletries, etc. Whether the final price you pay is based on the sale price, using a coupon, or buy one get one free – however you get the goods, stockpiling should be a tool in your savings toolkit.
Of course, you must ensure that you indeed have space to use this technique. It doesn’t make sense if you have a small apartment and no storage space. Crowding up your living space with a year’s supply of whatever is not a good idea. We’re not trying to make your home into a warehouse! A home with a garage or basement is ideal.
It’s simple – when you find a really good bargain on non-perishable goods, just buy a bunch of them. Do a rough calculation of how much of the item you would use over the course of a year, and what it would cost if you bought the items at retail each time you needed them. If it is within your budget, make the purchase. You can assume that in the future, due to inflation your money will most likely be worth a bit less, and that the goods you are stockpiling will most likely cost more.
For example, I saw a great deal on black beans, and garbanzo beans (chickpeas). I use both of them a lot because I like them. Beans are also a great, cheap source of protein. I make rice and beans, hummus, black bean soup and about 20 other recipes. But anyway….
The price is usually around $1.09 a can for each. They were on sale at Shaw’s for .50 a can. Half price? Okay, how much room do I have? I ended up buying 24 cans of each, knowing that I would use them all in the course of a year, and as canned goods, the shelf life is years and years. I filled two empty boxe, and they are safely marked and tucked away under my kitchen counter.
Then I calculated how much I “saved” on the beans, and put it into my savings. -59 cents savings per can = a savings of $28.32, of course assuming that that price does not go up. (I sincerely doubt the price would ever go down to less than .50.)
On this particular day, they had run out of pinto beans – so I went the the service desk and got a rain check, locking in the price on 12 more cans. (I’ll post about a way I maximize rain checks in the near future!)
I did the same thing a few months back when I saw a “Buy One get Two Free” (B1G2) on a detergent brand that I use. I love these “B1G2” deals! I bought 3, and got 9. Did I need 9 bottles of detergent this week/month? Of course not.
But at 48 loads of laundry per bottle, and two loads of laundry per week, I just “stockpiled” enough detergent for 432 loads of laundry, for $19.17. ($6.39 per bottle). A savings of $38.34 for something I will definitely use over time. I have enough detergent for over 4 years. I am certainly not worried about it “going bad” and it’s all in the basement laundry area.
That’s all there is to it. When you see a really good bargain on nonperishable goods that will absolutely be used, go for it! Just be aware of the shelf life, and be sure to keep your stock in a dry area. It does no good to stockpile a ton of canned or paper goods, and return to find them rusted or soaked.