I was having a chat with my colleague the other day, who told me that she and her boyfriend, who she lives with, have been trying desperately to find ways to save money in this expensive city. They’re both working on paying back loans from their undergraduate studies, and on top of that, her boyfriend is paying off his law school loans. So when they were evaluating their expenses one day, they were both shocked to find that on average in the last several months, they’ve been spending about $800-900 on groceries per month! That’s over $200 per week! What could they possibly be buying — fois gras and rib-eye steaks every week?!
I told Chris this in disbelief. Granted, I haven’t ever carefully scrutinized our grocery expenses, but that just sounded like too much to me. On average based on memory, we’d spend about $50-60 on groceries per week, and oftentimes, that would include re-stocking up on stables that last a long time, whether that’s olive oil, dried beans, or spices. Chris said it was around $70 per week on average based on Mint data (that’s $280/month). We also would eat out a couple meals during the weekends, but most New Yorkers do that and more, anyway. Oftentimes, my biggest grocery expenses are in January-February of every year because I’m restocking staples, as my rule is that I have to empty out and use “staple” items like spices, rice, beans, canned goods, by the end of the calendar year.
So now she’s trying to save money by having her boyfriend expense both of their dinners every night on his current client by staying at the office until at least 8pm every night (that’s the rule at his firm). I wonder how much they are spending on groceries now. Eeek.