Product pricing less than the manufacturer advertised price : The grocery game challenge #3 Apr 14-20, 2014

pre-priced products Mr. Goudas honey mielPRODUCT PRICING IN YOUR FACE

 

Price monitoring may lead to us seeing more of the manufacturer advertised price printed right on the product we are purchasing at the grocery store.

Back in March I wrote a post about the suppliers fighting back because they no longer want to see their products viewed as the loss leader to get customers through the door.

Some places like Shoppers Drug Mart have a great deal on milk which is why we buy it there every week paired with their Shoppers Optimum program for points however the milk is advertised at below cost pricing from what we were told.

Now that’s not a bad thing from our perspective as a customer because we use milk every day and we want the best prices. We shop more at Shoppers Drug Mart not just because the milk is cheap but also because of the points program and great flyer specials they have.

Does the milk get us through the door? You bet! If we didn’t need milk and eggs which also go on for a great price at $1.99 most weeks we might not go in as much. You know you are a regular when the staff know you by name like they do us lol.

 

Manufacturer advertised price

 

It was the product in the photo above Mr. Goudas Honey with the manufacturer advertised price on the bottle that alerted me to something I haven’t seen before in terms of pricing. However as you can see the store price tag is selling the honey for less than the manufacturer advertised price at $6.49.

Even if it’s only the manufacturer suggested retail price on the product the retailer has to decide whether they want to sell it at that price or lower the price. You won’t see the price any higher than the labelled price because that would simply make no sense whatsoever.

In a way I see this as the manufacturer forcing the retailer to make a pricing decision based on what the manufacture advertised price is on the product. They know that the retailer won’t drop the price too drastic so they cap it off at what they believe the price should be and hope for the best.

I don’t know of any product pricing laws in Canada besides the scanning code of practice but that’s not a law it’s just voluntary however you never know what lurks around corners.

Sure, we look at that immediately as it’s a great deal because we are paying less than what they originally wanted. Who is they? The manufacturer of course by why are they putting prices on the products now?

Maybe they are trying to force the stores to sell the product at that price and this is what we have to look forward to in the future. This may also be a way for the manufacturer to control the pricing from going higher but not so much lower at the moment.

We often hear of friends and fans of the blogs going over to the USA to do shopping and it’s because the price gap between the US and Canadian products makes that trip worthwhile for them.

Even though you factor in toll costs and travel time and gas for cross-border shopping once you do the math with your grocery bill you still may save more money than if you simply shopped at home in Canada.

Do we want to keep the money in Canada? Sure we do but pricing and budgets matched with what Canadian families can afford may just draw them over the border.

Do you think we will see more products with a manufacturer advertised price on them? What do you think of this type of pricing by the manufacturer?

 

April grocery game challenge posts

 

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up for the month each week here in this section for you. :)

 

Grocery saving tips

 

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the saving process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE. CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the FREE Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…… Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget.. check it out!

 

Ultimate grocery shopping guide

 

Everything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is below with new information added monthly.

If you missed a Grocery Game Challenge post some of the most popular posts are listed below or you can now find the posts listed on their own page called The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email and let me know.

 

Food food and more food

 

shopping-cart-short-cash

Food Basics

4 x Frozen Wild Salmon- Sale $6.97 reg $10

Total out-of-pocket $27.88

Grocery shop results

 

 Wild Pacific Salmon

 

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2820

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $240 per year or $20 per month.)

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with potentially one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget for March $235.00-$20.82=$214.18/4=$53.54
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $0
  • Total Coupons Used to date: $33.75
  • Total Discounts this Week: $0
  • Total Discounts Used to date: $5.54
  • Total Gift Cards Used to date: $33.18
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used to date: $0
  • Stockpile Budget ($20.00): $20.00-$20.00=$0
  • Stockpile Budget Used to Date: $20.00+$19.08+$17.94+ $2.06+$20.00
  • Total Spent This Week: $27.88
  • Total Spent So Far April: $202.45
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $n/a
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month: $n/a
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $39.31-$27.88= $11.43
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $n/a
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $242.66+ Feb $191.74+ March $255.82+April $
  • Weekly Overview: We are away for the week so we are eating at the relatives so we didn’t need too much in terms of shopping, well nothing lol. We did pick up the salmon since it’s such a great price and we love it. We don’t have much left to spend for thee month with the stocking up we’ve done. We do have $70 in PC points now to use if we need to.

 

Coupon Sleuth

 

We didn’t find any coupons this week since we didn’t really shop.

Did you find any coupons? If so share the details in the comment section of this post where you found it and what the coupon is for with expiry.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.

 

  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?

 

No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.

 

  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?

 

The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.

 

  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?

 

Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.

 

 

Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups of the week and your weekly Checkout 51 offers from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.

 

  • What is an FPC?

 

An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.

 

 

You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.

 

 

I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your grocery budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do.

This is why the grocery game challenge was created to not only show you that we are like everyone else but to bring us all together to work as a team to get our budgets on track.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2014 get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

Feel free to read all the above posts that I linked to above which I feel are relevant to learning about the grocery budget and grocery shopping in general.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada 2014!

-Mr.CBB

Money-quote

 

Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

How a sale flyer can be confusing: The Grocery Game Challenge #2 Feb 10-16, 2014

flyer sales Canada DON’T RUSH YOUR MONEY

 

Reading through the sale flyer of each store is something I do each week in order to make a list of what we need to shop for.

I have probably told you over and over again how important a list is because without it I’d likely deviate and buy all sorts we probably didn’t need or could do without.

Saying that, there are times when a great deal is before you and you have to make that split second decision yes or no, like we did this week as you will read in our grocery shop. Making sure you have the funds in your budget is imperative though.

How many of you can relate? Probably lots but that’s not what I’m here to chat about today.

I always tell you to read your receipt before you leave the store just in case there is an error either made by the computer or the cashier which does happen.

I should also add to that to make sure you are not in a huge rush when shopping because that is when you make more errors or maybe miss an error.

We were in a rush and we mis-read or mis-understood is more likely a better choice of words how a sale flyer with limits work at Shoppers Drug Mart.

We all know mistakes happen but for some stores they have the scanning code of practice which you can read all about if you are not familiar and for others they don’t.

If you don’t catch a manual error you are out that cash depending on if it was in your favour or not but we should still be honest either way.

 

Sale flyer

 

My wife has to attend a family baby shower next month so we’ve watched for a baby sale flyer at Shoppers Drug Mart to see if we can match some great baby deals with our Shoppers Optimum Points coupons.

We have almost 400,000 Shoppers Optimum Points now over the past year so they send us all sorts of coupons for 20x the points, or get x amount of points if you spend x amount.

We like to use them only if we need to pick up items or if the math means it’s in our favour paired with a sale flyer. This was a great week to use our printable Shoppers Drug Mart 20x point coupon if you spent $50 because the sale flyer stated that Johnson’s Baby products were on sale for $2.99 Sunday and Monday with a limit of 4.

The rest of the week the baby products would be $3.99 with a limit of 4. There’s a catch though to this type of sale flyer ad. Maybe it’s obvious to some but for us, not so obvious.

At $3.99 that’s still a decent price after we compared prices at many other stores ranging from $5.99 and up. So we needed to spend $50 which was reasonable since we needed to pick up 2 bags of milk which would cost us just under $8.00.

Off to the baby section we went and it was great to see that there were so many products on sale for $2.99. It was like hitting the baby shower jackpot. We were going to pick up a nice basket at Value Village and some clear cellophane from the dollar store and jazz up the basket with bits and bobs for the mom to be for her baby.

While at Shoppers my wife left me in charge to pick out baby products and all she said was get one of everything that was on sale so we could hit the $50 mark. She ran off to the pharmacy to order a prescription she needed and to chat to her friend who was working who also gave her a bonus 3000 points coupon with the prescription beeper.

This was an unplanned shower so the expense is going under miscellaneous this month but none the less we needed to make a nice gift up. We went to check out and to be honest we were paying attention but the sales don’t factor in until then end on the new cash registers so nothing registered in our minds until after we left the store.

I read over the receipt and thought the flyer sale said that select Johnson’s baby products were on sale for $2.99 but for many of them we were charged $3.99.

I went back into the store with the Johnson’s baby products and I’m already dealing with a 3 day migraine and I’m almost late for an appointment with my real estate agent. We bought everything from baby shampoo, baby wash, baby powder, Vaseline etc. for $2.99, supposedly.

I talk to a cashier who said we weren’t the only ones who have noticed this but that just lately that Shoppers Drug Mart has been advertising products in the sale flyer with a limit although that limit may include the entire line of products even if they are all different.

He said we have to really watch the limits and what products the sale flyer describes otherwise after you reach the limit on any of the products you pay the next step price.

The confusing part if you are not aware is that it is the entire Johnson’s line of products that are on sale that you have a limit on, not just per product ie baby wash, baby shampoo or UPC code. I thought that was a bit odd since they were all different products but that’s what he says they do now.

So, even though each shelf price tag has the sale price and limit of 4 it’s not just for that one product the limit it’s for the entire line that’s on sale. We thought it was per product as the sales tag read, limit 4 which is what had us confused. I’m sure there must be an easier way to market the sale so it’s not so confusing to customers like us although we get it now.

If you are reading the flyer sales be warned that what you see in that little box may mean that there is a limit of 4 on all of those products not per product. If you read the shelf price it says the product name, the sale price and limit of 4 and that may mean more than just that product you are buying.

We don’t normally buy lots of products like this so it was a bit new to us and maybe for you seasoned Shoppers Drug Mart shoppers you caught on to this faster than we did and that’s great.

It’s no different from a multi-buy sale flyer and if you don’t buy the 2/$5.00 and only buy 1 you pay a regular price of let’s say, $3.99 if that’s what the flyer sale states. It’s so important to read and read that fine print just so you don’t get confused at the cash like we did.

If believed you were getting all those products for $2.99 and are someone who doesn’t read their receipts you likely just paid $1.00 more per product than you thought if you went over that 4 product limit.

Like I said, $3.99 is still a great deal so we didn’t bother returning the products. It’s just something to be aware of and I thought I would let you know how we handled it.

Have you ever paid more for a product because of a product limit on an entire line of different products and UPC’s or a multi-buy where you only purchased one item?

 

February grocery game challenge posts

 

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up for the month each week here in this section for you.

 

Grocery saving tips

 

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the saving process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE. CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…… Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget.. check it out!

 

Ultimate grocery shopping guide

 

download symbol

Everything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is below with new information added monthly.

If you missed a Grocery Game Challenge post some of the most popular posts are listed below or you can now find the posts listed on their own page called The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email and let me know.

 

 

Food food and more food

 

shopping-cart

Wal-Mart

  • Premium plus crackers whole wheat $2.50
  • Split pea beans $2.76
  • Celery- $1.27
  • 4 x chunk light tuna $1.07
  • Tomatoes $1.77
  • 6 x Grapefruit  Sale $0.47 each $2.82
  • Mini Carrots Sale $2.00
  • Bag of coleslaw $1.47
  • Bag of yellow onions 3lb $1.00
  • Bag of carrots 3lb $1.00

Total out-of-pocket $ 21.87

Food Basics

  • Panko Bread Crumbs Sale $1.50
  • Bean Sprouts $1.50
  • Light Rye Bread Sale $1.99
  • Beef cubes $1.00
  • Red Peppers Sweet $1.87
  • Anjou pears $0.91
  • Bosc pears $1.12
  • 2 x White mushrooms 1lb Sale $1.97 each
  • Romaine hearts $1.97
  • Asparagus x2 bunches Sale $4.30
  • Red onions $1.97
  • 2 x Axe Body Spray minus coupon BOGO $4.47

Total out-of-pocket $28.71

Shoppers Drug Mart

  • 2 x 4 L Neilson Milk $7.94

Total out-of-pocket $7.94

Zehrs

  • President’s Choice fruit condiment $0.44 (blowout not on list…eesh)
  • Raspberry and Strawberry jam $0.97 (blowout not on list)
  • Green Giant green cut beans Sale $2.49
  • 2 x bags of shredded mozzarella with flax  Sale $2.99 (reg $8.99)
  • 2 x Dempsters whole grains bread $3.79-pink stickers $1.90 each
  • Pillers Knackwurst sausages Sale $2.99
  • Pillers Bratwurst sausages Sale $3.99

Total out-of-pocket $21.52

Grocery Game Challenge  Feb  2014 flyer sales

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2820

 

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $240 per year or $20 per month.)

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with potentially one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget for February $235.00-$7.66 overpspend in January =$227.34
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $4.94
  • Total Coupons Used to date: $21.25
  • Total Discounts this Week: $3.80
  • Total Discounts Used to date: $5.54
  • Total Gift Cards Used to date: $33.18
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used to date: $0
  • Stockpile Budget ($20.00): $0
  • Stockpile Budget Used to Date: $20.00
  • Total Spent This Week: $80.04
  • Total Spent So Far February: $7.66 over budget January+$25.97+$80.04
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $0
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month: $0
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $227.34-$25.97-$80.04=$121.33
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $0
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: Jan $242.66 (does not include stockpile budget)
  • Weekly Overview: Not too bad of a week as we found a few items on blow-out that weren’t on our list but the price was too good to pass up. Otherwise, a good shop for us.

 

Canadian Coupons Found

 

If you want to know the specifics of any of the following coupons as they are hard to read simply email me or leave a comment and I’ll let you know as soon as possible.

 

Canadian Coupons February 2014

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.

 

  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?

 

No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.

 

  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?

 

The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.

 

  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?

 

Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.

 

 

Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups of the week and your weekly Checkout 51 offers from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.

 

  • What is an FPC?

 

An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.

 

 

You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.

 

 

I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your grocery budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do.

This is why the grocery game challenge was created to not only show you that we are like everyone else but to bring us all together to work as a team to get our budgets on track.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2014 get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

Feel free to read all the above posts that I linked to above which I feel are relevant to learning about the grocery budget and grocery shopping in general.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada 2014!

-Mr.CBB

Money-quote

Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

The Saturday Weekend Review #52: Should all computer pricing errors be honoured?

Pricing-ErrorsTO HONOUR A PRICE OR NOT

 

We’ve talked about pricing errors before here at Canadian Budget Binder which is essentially either a glitch in the system, human error or simply a price not being changed properly.

Earlier in November I talked about an online glitch for Wal-Mart but they did give back to the customers in question with a $10 gift card.

In Canada we call this the Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) which most stores follow such as Wal-Mart, Shoppers Drug Mart and No Frills just to name a few.

The short story is if a price scans higher than the shelf price you get the price free up to $10 or a $10 deduction from the price if it is over $10 in cost to you, provided the store participates in the program. Sounds great, and it is as long as you are aware of SCOP which sadly, many people are not.

I was reading a story on Yahoo this morning about a computer glitch for Delta Airlines apparently caused by a junior programmer. Prices for first class flights were being offered at prices that no one could refuse and they were being snatched up and fast.

Word broke on Facebook as people bragged about the extreme deals in no time at all. Deal seekers were flocking to book round-trip flights to Hawaii for cheaper than a dinner out on the town for two at a swanky restaurant which for us is under $100. It was quickly shut down but anyone who says word of mouth marketing doesn’t work is sadly mistaken.

Sure, I was jealous of the people who picked up the cheapo tickets but I thought for sure they would not be honoured. I was wrong because in the USA price glitches like this have to be honoured.

Interesting but in all honesty I think it’s good customer service when you honour an error that happened even if it was a glitch in the system. We are using computer technology for everything these days so in this case the consumers are being protected by this regulation.

New Department of Transportation regulations, aimed at truth in advertising, require airlines to honour any mistake fares offered.

 

System error

 

Just before Christmas we were shopping at Zehrs and we are involved in the new PC Plus program where you load specific deals and promos to your card once they send you an email.

We do this every week and while grocery shopping we noticed a gift card that we thought we had to drive out-of-town to get on a gift card rack. Needless to say we were thrilled and picked up a $100 gift card which finished off one more Christmas gift.

When we scanned in our order with the self-serve checkout we noticed that they gave us a bonus 20,000 points which meant we got $20 in points. At the time we had no idea why but it was when we went home and looked up on the PC website it was where we learned about the promo.

Like many people those we failed to read the full details but none the less their system let the points make their way through. We were thrilled and even the cashier said that it was a promo and that it was great that we were awarded the points.

I decided to try another gift card to see if it would give us the points again but it only seemed to be a one time deal which was fine with us.

I believe it was about a week later when we received an error message email from Presidents Choice telling us about the errors that had occurred and that they were correcting them and removing the points from said accounts that received them.

Apparently gift cards were not part of the promo but for some reason the computer allowed the system to award those who bought gift cards the promo deal of 20,000 points when you spend $100. Bummer.

It was a glitch on their end but it was not honoured. I guess we can’t have it all, so much for a discounted Christmas gift. I wondered why they wouldn’t honour is since they follow the scanning code of practice but I guess there are no laws and regulations that say they have to so the points were removed.

I’m curious to learn how business owners big and small are protecting themselves from any type of pricing errors whether they have disclaimers, honour pricing errors and how they deal with customers to keep them happy when an error happens.

Have you ever had any type of computer glitch that was not part of the scanning code of practice honoured? Should retailers in Canada have to honour such glitches or will it do more harm to the business if it’s not in a position to do so?

 

Canadian Budget Binder this week

 

If you missed any of my posts from the week here is the list of posts you can catch up on reading!

 

CBB at home and the blog

 

Sick, Sick and more sick that has been the extent of our Christmas holidays if you haven’t heard me whine about it as of yet. I’ve been so ill the past 2 weeks and now my wife is sick with the exact same thing. Needless to say our holidays have been filled with Halls and lots of cough medicine and rest.

Other than that we’ve enjoyed our time with our family for the holidays and plan on celebrating New Years with them as well. We have to make up for lost time eating food because we haven’t been eating too much and just staring at all the food makes us drool but when you can’ t taste it, there’s no point eating it.

Getting back home we will be in full force in our home gym and getting back on track with our running and working out every single day. In 2014 it will be all about fitness, eating healthy and sticking to that budget.

 

Fan deals and inspirations

 

 new-leather-boots

Submit your Brag or Inspiration

If you have a brag that you want me to share email me at canadianbudgetbinder (@) [yahoo] [.ca] or fill out my contact form by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post.

Hi Mr.CBB and fans,

I thought I would send you a quick email with a photo of the new boots I went and bought the other day after reading your Friday Grab a Brew post. Thanks for answering my email so fast to tell me where your wife bought her boots.

I too have size 10 feet and when I read the deals your wife got on boots at Sears Canada I went out to find me a pair. Once I got there I was shocked at the rock bottom prices but when I asked the sales lady she told me they needed to make room for the new line that was coming in plus it was Boxing week sales.

The boots in the picture are a light brown leather high heel boot which retails at Sears Canada for $249.00. The day I purchased them they were reduced with a red sticker to $149.00.

The boxing week deal scored me the boots a final price of 50% only because I found a couple of scratches on the boots. I remember a blog post where you talked about if you see a defect not to be shy to ask for a discount, so I did. So, instead of the 40% off they gave me 50% off costing me $75 plus tax for these boots.

Thanks for such an awesome blog Mr.CBB

-Kristen

Making a difference

 

Making a difference is a part of this post where I share a personal finance blog that I interact with daily and has made a difference in my life.

I have asked the blogger to introduce themselves, their blog and how they want to make a difference with their blog for the fans and for themselves.

Today, I bring you my dear friend Kelly from “Staying on Budget” who, like us enjoys using a budget and wants to keep debt at bay because she understands that spending less than you earn is critical to the success of any budget. Check out her blog as she shares their major home improvement DIY projects for the world.

staying on budget home renovations

Hi Mr.CBB and Fans!

My name is Kelly and I run the blog “Staying on Budget”. Thank-you for having me stop in to participate in the “Making a Difference” feature of the week.

Staying on Budget was started to share my journey of getting out of debt and diy-ing a house. My goal is to share how to balance saving money, getting out of debt, and home improvement projects.

I hope the blog is making a difference by sharing how it is possible to tackle both large and small budget items…and how it takes time but anything can be done.

Some of the topics the blog covers include the grocery budget, starting a side hustle, and managing time. The blog’s goal is to share the process of making extra money through side projects and how to maximize the budget. It’s possible to live a full life while getting out of debt and tackling other projects or expenses.

I started the blog to share the journey a lot of people are facing right now. Student loan debt is a huge problem and I hope my story inspires others to pay off the debt quickly or not go into debt at all for school.

In addition to paying off the debt, I wanted to share the process of fixing up a house on a budget. It’s not easy and I didn’t see a lot of blogs that were quite as extreme as my situation with well into six figures of student loan debt and a house that needs a complete makeover.

I hope people are inspired to take on projects by reading Staying on Budget whether it’s a new side hustle or a home improvement project or just save some money by making laundry soap!

-Kelly

 

Blog post sharing

 

I really appreciate when other blog owners recognize my hard work at Canadian Budget Binder and share my posts with their fans or even mention my blog on their blog or website.

Here are the blogs that did just that this past week, so please head over and check them out. If I’m missing you it’s because I didn’t get a ping back so please send me an email and I’ll add you next Saturday.

Since it is the Christmas holidays many personal finance bloggers have been taking a break from blogging so not too much link love for Canadian Budget Binder this week.

Let’s see what the new year has in store for CBB and all the blogs we follow and share with all of you.

 

What is a blog carnival?

 

Some fans have asked me just what is a blog carnival so a little explanation is due here for anyone reading for the first time or for my long-time fans. A blog carnival is where a blog or website hosts what we call a carnival of blog posts from around the web.

Most blog carnivals have a theme and certain rules for submitting which must be followed. If you are a blogger and would like to learn what blog carnival directories I submit to each week you can find the information in a previous Saturday Weekend Review post that I wrote.

 

Carnival Glory

 

A big thanks to these pages for accepting my blog posts and sharing them in the following carnivals………..

 

Google-web-search-terms

Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Here are a few of my favorite searches that may have even brought you here and you’re reading this, right now.

  • Canadian Quickies- Hmm, I think this goes back to when I used to hold my Quickie Contests although I’m pretty sure that’s not what they were searching for. :)
  • Why are there no good Boxing Day sales anymore?-  Glad I wasn’t the only one who noticed
  • Money isn’t everything, Love is much better- That is correct!
  • No Christmas bonus or even a thank-you- Well, sometimes that’s the way life goes even though out of respect it would be nice to have your employer thank-you for being a valued employee and Happy Holidays.
  • Skype to Heaven- It is that time of year you know.. so make sure you tell the people you love, that you love them while they are here.

That’s all for this weeks edition of The Saturday Weekend Review.

-Mr.CBB

 

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Related articles

The Grocery Game Challenge Nov 4-10, 2013 #1: Holiday baking on a budget

baking-supplies-ingredientsHOLIDAY COOKIE SMELLS FILL THE AIR

The holiday season is fast approaching and whether you buy cookies or enjoy baking cookies some of the best cookie recipes may cost your holiday baking budget some cash if you don’t plan in advance.

With less than 2 months until the festivities there’s no better time to get baking than the present. If you wait until the last-minute you might find you get overwhelmed with having to shop for gifts, plan a dinner, getaway to the relatives, work and friends Christmas parties and then bake on top of it all.

Some of my favourite Christmas cookie recipes that I like to bake and to eat are the butter cookies and the sugar cookies both of which are fairly inexpensive to make with butter being the costly baking ingredient. Making sugar cookies from scratch are probably one of my favourite cookies to make because it reminds me of home. My mum used to make shortbread but the butter, sugar and shortbread cookies all taste the same with a bit of difference in texture.

This past year I posted a few of our favourite holiday treat recipes such as chocolate peanut butter balls, coconut balls and snow balls all of which are my most popular blog post recipes this time of year. I haven’t been making cakes as much this year as I did in 2012 but they can get quite costly as well depending on what type of cake you are making.

 

Cost of  baking

 

baking-ingredients-food-basics

Around the holidays using alcohol, sugar, butter, nuts, flour and even out of season fruits like figs and apricots can drive the price up of Christmas cakes that you might make for those special holiday gatherings.

The prices of walnut pieces are at $17.99 a pound right now in the bulk store and If I see a sale you can bet I’ll jump in and grab them while I can. Just yesterday we picked up 4 bags of granulated sugar on sale for $1.44 which is the cheapest I’ve seen in ages so I picked up the limit of 4 at No Frills.

I find I use lots of walnuts and pecans for holiday baking and the manufacturers know that bakers around the world commercially and in-house bakers like us will go through lots of nuts so expect the price to stay high for the most part. What we like to do is if I find them cheap throughout the year we buy them and freeze the nuts.

You might remember all the cashew nuts we bought a few weeks back in our grocery game post and it was for the $1.99 price tag that we bought them because we know that nut prices will sky-rocket. If you are peanut fan you can usually find large bags of seasoned or salt and roasted nuts at Shoppers Drug Mart on sale for $2.50 a bag which is a great price in my opinion.

I have a friend whose mother makes a chex mix and bags it up every year for their friends and family in clear bags and wraps with a bow. They give these away as gifts with a bottle of wine as a gift rather than buying gifts and it may seem simple and it is but it is very costly. Nuts and some chips like Fritos are not cheap but certainly make this treat one that we all look forward to every year as a tradition.

 

Shop early

 

What we do is start looking for Christmas baking ingredients earlier in the year or even a few months before the holidays. Butter has been on sale the past few months for around $2.88 a pound so we loaded up on a few pounds here and there and store it in the freezer.

Butter will keep in the freezer for a few months but be cautious about how long it stays in there. We store it in a freezer bag and track dates on our freezer inventory list that is in our file folder. You can download a free copy from the blog if you want to track what is inside your freezer.

Some people stick to the very simple and make easy peanut butter cookies to munch on for the holidays and you can easily chocolate them up by adding some of your favourite chocolate chips or chunks. The best chocolate chips to use if you are making simple choc chip cookies (that’s how the wife says it but I say choccie) are a mix of semi-sweet and milk chocolate for me personally but it differs depending on your sweet-tooth preference.

The price of chocolate chips can get very costly although if you watch you might find the bulk bag 1kg of Hershey’s Chipits on sale for $6.99 or even $7.99 which is a decent price. If you are a Costco member you might find the cost of baking ingredients to be cheaper in bulk packaging as long as you will use the product which most people do who like to bake over the holidays. We’ve always found the best baking ingredients to be found at the bulk barn but not necessarily the cheapest in price.

If there is an odd ingredient or you need fancy baking supplies especially if you want to make decorated holiday cookies usually the bulk barn will carry it unless you know of a baking supply store in your area or even try Micheal’s stores.

Do you make any Christmas cookie recipes or other holiday treats?

How far in advance do you plan to shop and bake?

How do you factor in holiday baking costs into your budget?

 

Grocery saving tips

 

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the saving process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…… Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget.. check it out!

 

November Grocery Game Challenge Posts

 

Since this is the first installment of the November grocery game challenge I will announce the October winner here. The winner of the grocery game for October goes to….. drumroll please…… #14 MARY C. I really hope we can get more fans on board with the grocery game challenge this month so please help me spread the word.

Mary if you can contact me I will get your coupon envelope sorted out and sent off to you in the mail as soon as possible. You all make me proud. Thank you for participating with me every single month. We must have a GGC end of year online party :-) I’ll bake the brownies mmmm.

 

download symbol

Missed past Grocery Game posts? Catch up on all the latest grocery saving posts below!

 

Food food and more food

 

what_s-in-mrcbbs-shopping-cart

Food Basics

  • Sweet Potatoes $7.23 Sale $0.88lb
  • Pumpernickel Bread Sale $2.00
  • Bananas $1.18
  • 3 Mangoes $2.64
  • 2 x broccoli $0.88 each
  • 2x White Mushrooms Sale $0.88 227g
  • Reduced cucumbers x 3 $1.69
  • 2 x Egg Creations reduced $1.50-$1.00 coupons
  • 1KG Bucket Krinos Feta $13.99

Total out of pocket $33.25

Bulk Barn

  • 2x Organic Apple Cider $1.00 each reduced

Total out of pocket $2.00

No Frills

  • 4x Redpath Sugar  sale $1.44 each
  • 3x Catch of the day Basa Fillets Sale $8.88 each
  • Avocados Sale $1.88 5ct
  • Baby bok choy $3.36
  • Bosc Pears $1.31
  • 5lb Clementines $3.88
  • 6lbs Macintosh apples Sale $2.97

Total Out of Pocket $45.80

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2819.38

 

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget For November $235.00
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $2.00
  • Total Discounts this Week: $0
  • Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Stockpile Budget: $0 Used $0
  • Total Spent This Week: $81.05
  • Total Spent So Far for November $81.05
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $0
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month of (November): $0
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $153.95
  • Total Coupons Used This Month: $2.00
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $0
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: $206.95 (Jan)+ $160.77 (Feb) + (March)$169.62 + (April)$397.74+(May) $155.68 + (June) $216.01+ (July) $235.83 + (August) $182.35 + (September) $255.69 + (October) $196.64=  $2177.28 (does not include stockpile budget)
  • Rendezvous Account: $65.38+$17.24 =$82.62<> This is money saved if there is any leftover at the end of a month of grocery shopping for a date night for the wife and I.
  • Weekly Overview: This was a big shop for us and we wanted to load up on the fish since it was on sale and we love Basa fillets. We find that the cost of meat is getting so high now and if we can eat fish for less than we will opt for that choice instead along with sausages. We aren’t big red meat eaters so we don’t miss too much but it’s a pity the cost of chicken is so high at the moment.

 

Canadian Coupons Found

 

Canadian-Coupons-November-2013

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.

 

  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?

 

No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.

 

  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?

 

The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.

 

  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?

 

Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.

 

 

Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups of the week including Checkout 51 from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.

 

  • What is an FPC?

 

An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.

 

 

You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.

 

 

I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices. Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this t of our budget like many people do and this is why the grocery game challenge was created.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

You’ve made a wise decision.

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada!

 

-Mr.CBB

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The Grocery Game Challenge July 8-14, 2013 #2- Out of stock, get a rain check

The-grocery-game-challenge-2-July-2013

Don’t Forget To Take A Rain Check

No one likes to see an out-of-stock sign but if it happens have no fear you may still be able to get your hands on a good sale price. Some people call it rain check or rain cheque or even raincheck but they all have the same meaning in the end. I’m not clear why there are so many ways to spell it but for the sake of  this post I will call it a rain check.

Rain check definition

If you tell someone, “Could I take a rain check” that simply means that you would like to do it some other time or in the case of shopping get it another time. The difference being that in most cases the product is out-of-stock and you want the sale price when it gets re-stocked.

Rain Check Sample

Raincheck-example

What is a rain check?

I had no idea about a rain check when I moved to Canada and I’ve quickly learned I’m not the only one.  Many people are not aware that when a product that is on sale in the weekly flyer is out-of-stock, unless otherwise indicated “while supplies last” that you can get a rain check, if offered by the store.

Essentially if you are someone who likes to plan your grocery shop around the flyer special of the week you have probably run into the ‘out-of-stock’ crisis that most grocery stores go through when a good sale is on.

Many people tend to get frustrated and even upset when a store is out of a product that is on sale but for some people it is to their benefit. Let’s say that the eggs are on sale for $1.99 but you already have a dozen at home. Unless you plan to freeze eggs and the sale would be a bigger benefit to you then you likely won’t need any more for the moment.

If by chance you are in the store and notice they are out-of-stock you can ask for a rain check. In many cases the rain check is good for up to 30 days or as indicated. That means by the time you finish your egg stock at home you can get them on sale with your rain check. Most often the product is no longer on sale but you reap the rewards since you asked for a rain check.

How do I get a rain check?

Typically, If the product I have on my grocery list is out-of-stock I go to customer service to ask if they will honour the product by providing me with a rain cheque. Some stores might not offer a rain check so if you are not sure if you can get a rain check it’s worth the shot to just ask. In the long run it will save you money in your grocery budget or other categories in your budget depending on what the rain check is for. Worse case scenario if no rain check is offered you can price match at a store that offers price matching to get the same deal.

What does a rain check look like?

It’s not an actual cheque, it simply states what product you were looking for, any size descriptions, how many you want to purchase, date you were looking and the sale price. Each store that offers a rain cheque has its own provisions.

For example, a rain cheque that I picked up at Shoppers Drug Mart because they had run out-of-stock for eggs which are on sale this week for $1.99 is good for 30 days. I can get up to 4 cartons of eggs for the $1.99 sale price with my rain check.

In most cases if it’s a sale item they are only temporarily out-of-stock until the next truck delivery. You might also see an empty space where the sale item was supposed to be with a sign that reads “currently out-of-stock which does happen if it’s a great sale and they didn’t order enough product.

So, if I go back in tomorrow and the eggs are in stock I can still get them on sale PLUS I have a rain check for the next 30 days to pick up 4 more dozen eggs even if they are not on sale. I will still reap the rewards of the sale price.

Since Shoppers Drug Mart introduced their new cash register system they are now able to print off a raincheck (Canadian Tires and Shoppers Drug Mart spell it as one word) right on the cash register tape. It looks as if you are getting a receipt when in fact it’s a rain check.

I also went to Canadian Tire to pick up a UV lamp which rarely goes on sale so I wanted to get 2 or 3 of them. Well, they only had 1 in stock so I asked the lady at customer service if I could get a rain check.

On the rain check it states that the rain check is valid 30 days from the date of issue. That only means I have to make sure I go back in or call to check and see if the product has arrived so I can get the sale price of $34.99. Typically, if the product still has not been re-stocked they will re-issue any rain checks.

I don’t think I’ve had any problems at any store where they have issued me a rain check and if the product had not arrived where they would turn me away for an updated rain cheque.

Do you get a rain check when a product that is on sale is out-of-stock? 

Did I miss anything else out about rain checks that you can add for our readers? 

The-grocery-game-challenge-2-July-9-2013

July grocery game recap

If you missed grocery game posts for this month just click on the links below and post your shops in the comment section.

Grocery saving tips

Free Money Saving Downloads are lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals. Get organized with a freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE. I want to see you save money in your budget.

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy

What’s-In-MrCBB's-Shopping-Cart

No Frills

  • 2 x Astro Yogurt Balkan Sale $1.44
  • 1 x bags $3.49
  • 1 x Comet spray $1.00-50%=$0.50
  • 5 x Excel Gum Sale $2.00
  • 4 x Redpath Sugar Sale $1.44
  • 1 x celery PM Freshco Sale $1.00
  • 2 x Windsor Saver Salt $4.98-buy 2 save $2.00 coupon
  • Fresh Ginger $0.62
  • 1 x Iceberg Lettuce Sale $0.77
  • 1 x lettuce Sale $0.67
  • 2 x Ryvita $2.48-50% =$1.24
  • 10 x Limes Sale $1.67
  • 2 x mushrooms sale $1.77
  • 3 pks of Rooster Garlic Sale $0.99 for all 3 packs

Total Out Of Pocket $49.54

Zehrs

  • 3 x Liberte Greek Yogurt Reg $4.39-50%-$1.00 = $1.19
  • 1 x Flaxseed PC Organic Milled- SCOP
  • 1 x Flaxseed PC Organic Whole- SCOP
  • 3 x Tre Stelle Ricotta Reg $5.49-50% = $2.74
  • 5 x Aussie Conditioner Sale $1.50 (stockpile)
  • 2 x Pantene Conditioner 675ml Reg $9.98 Sale $4.00 (stockpile)

Total Out Of Pocket: $28.90- $18.08 stockpile $10.82

Food Basics

  • Krinos Feta $13.99
  • Zinda Cous-Cous Reg $3.49 Sale $2.49
  • Marc Angelo Lean Turkey Sausages Reg $4.49-30%= $3.14
  • Lactancia Cream Reg $3.49 Sale $2.49-$0.75 coupon

Total Out of Pocket $26.58

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2819.38
  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget For July: $235.00- $52.25 (over-spend in June)= $182.75 to spend in July.
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $8.00
  • Total Discounts this Week: $5.93 + 2 SCOP
  • Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Stockpile Budget: $20.00 Used $18.08
  • Total Spent This Week: $86.94
  • Total Spent So Far for (July) $86.94
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $n/a
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month of  (July): $n/a
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $95.81
  • Total Coupons Used This Month:$8.00
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $n/a
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: $206.95 (Jan)+ $160.77 (Feb) + (March)$169.62 + (April)$397.74+(May) $155.68 + (June) $216.01=$1306.77
  • Rendezvous Account: $65.38 This is money saved if there is any leftover at the end of a month of grocery shopping for a date night for the wife and I.

Weekly Overview: We had a big shop this week but we picked up some great deals that helped us stock up on a few items. Since we have a limited budget again for the month of July it’s so important that we stay on track the best we can. I hope we can do this.

Grocery-game-challenge-2-July-2013

Canadian coupons found in July

Grocery-game-canada-coupons-july-2013

target-ontario-coupons-July-2013

Frequently Asked Questions

Grocery Game Challenge RULES….. Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible. 

  1. Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop? No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have a few players from around the world.
  2. When does the Grocery Game Close each month? The Grocery Game Challenge Closes at Midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.
  3. Does Your Grocery Budget Include Health and Beauty and Laundry? Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.
  4. Where can I find Canadian CouponsHere are your latest Coupon Match-ups  of the week including Checkout 51 from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.
  5. How Do I Know what stores accept coupons? You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.
  6. How Do I Grocery Shop?- I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I don’t need to buy this or that. You may also substitute items in order to stick to your budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do and this is why the grocery game challenge was created.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving. You’ve made a wise decision.

Money-quote

Are you NEW to Canadian Budget Binder?