The key to successfully stockpiling is to never have to pay for your basic pantry items again. Or, at the very least, never have to buy them at anything more than the rock bottom price you can get them for. You want to get all your items when they are at their best prices and get enough so that you won’t have to buy again until it’s at their best prices again.
For example, my local grocery puts store brand canned green beans on sale for $.33 about once every 3-4 months. Since I know this, when they go on sale for $.33 I buy enough to last me until the next sale. How many you should get is up to you – how many cans of green beans would you use in 3-4 months? For me, I would get 12-15 cans. You may want more, you may need less. But for less than $5 I have 15 cans of green beans. Since green beans regularly run about $1 per can, I’ve saved $10 by buying 15 for $5 total vs. 15 for $1 each.
Now for dry pasta (spaghetti noodles or elbow macaroni, bowtie pasta, etc), with a buy one get one free sale and coupons, I can get pasta for free. Again, this happens about every 3-4 months. So I know, when it goes on sale and I have coupons, I need to get enough to last me for a few months. (This is one reason why you need to get multiple papers each week. You need more than one of each coupon if you’re going to stockpile.)
So when should you stockpile something? Here are the most common items and what’s considered a great price. But if something is on the $.50 list and you find it for $.55 – by all means, don’t snub it – that’s still a good price! Plus, the more you shop, the better you’ll get a spotting the best price on your favorite brands.
***Note that these stock up prices are with coupons. It’s not likely that you’ll find these prices often without using coupons or other offers. ***
Bath tissue – if the per roll price comes out under $.25 for single rolls or $.50 for double (or the new “family” size rolls) then it’s stock up price! So ideal price on a 4ct pack of double rolls would be under $2.
Diapers – My stockpile diaper price when my son was little was anything under $5 for the name brand jumbo packs. Although I got really excited when I could get a name brand for around $4.50/pack. If I was buying store brand diapers I wouldn’t pay more than $4 for a jumbo pack.
Toothpaste – Anything under $1/tube for Crest or Colgate is good when you’re building your stockpile. Once you have a few tubes in your stockpile, watch for $.50 or less (free is the best!)
Shampoo/Conditioner – $.50 or less per bottle. I’m not too picky on brand. I’ll get Garnier, Pantene, whatever I can for under $.50. If you like a specific brand just keep watching the deals to find the best price on your favorite.
Deodorant – under $1 but this could vary if you’re picky about your brand. Speed Stick, Irish Spring, Right Guard and Mitchum are the ones you’re going to be able to get under $1 regularly. Secret and Dove will be a little more and brands like Old Spice and Axe even more.
Stock up on these food items when you find them under $1.00:
Flour 4lb bags
Sugar 5lb bags
Broth/Stock in large cartons
Juice 64oz bottles
Stock up on these food items when you find them for under $.50:
Macaroni and Cheese
Canned Tomatoes and Tomato Sauce
Canned Tuna and Chicken
Canned Soups* and Chilis
Salad Dressings and Marinades
*Canned “cream of” soups are at rock bottom price when they are under $.40. Single serve potato pouches should be around $.35 or less.
Tell me what’s on your basics list and what your stock up price is!