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Lets say for example there is a great deal on laundry soap this week only. You have plenty of soap to last until the next month and your budget is getting a little low for the current month.

Do you a) stock up with 3 or 4 jugs

b) stick to you budget knowing that next month you may have to pay more.

Myself, I stock up and by 3 or 4 jugs. Laundry soap is a need, the more I buy now the more I will save later. However this seems to be a problem with me sticking to a budget. I usually check for deals weekly on things that we need and stock up regardless of the budget situation. I kills me to pay twice as much for something the next week because I wanted to stay on budget the previous week. In doing this I always make sure its "needed things", like soap, toilet paper, the usual grocery items. I dont go over budget to buy 5 tubs of ice cream on sale.
 

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Lets say for example there is a great deal on laundry soap this week only. You have plenty of soap to last until the next month and your budget is getting a little low for the current month.

Do you a) stock up with 3 or 4 jugs

b) stick to you budget knowing that next month you may have to pay more.

Myself, I stock up and by 3 or 4 jugs. Laundry soap is a need, the more I buy now the more I will save later. However this seems to be a problem with me sticking to a budget. I usually check for deals weekly on things that we need and stock up regardless of the budget situation. I kills me to pay twice as much for something the next week because I wanted to stay on budget the previous week. In doing this I always make sure its "needed things", like soap, toilet paper, the usual grocery items. I dont go over budget to buy 5 tubs of ice cream on sale.
Option A sounds ok. Maybe buy 1-2 extra. Keeps from blowing the budget. Keep watching the sales, it will come back.
 

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Yes it will be on sale again but not when I need more.

No, I'm in favour of stocking up when stuff is on sale. You're going to need that stuff eventually and buying it now means you won't have to worry about it later. I also buy lots of things in advance thusly, even if not on sale, to save time later. Why buy 1 tub of yogurt when I can buy 5 and be able to consume them all before they expire? This way I have one trip to the yogurt section of the store, get what I need and then it's dealt with for a few weeks. I would have eventually bought 5 anyway.

Same thing with the OP.
 

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I dont consider buying many months supply as blowing the budget. The budget is for the year. There are many items that come as a lump sum like car and house insurance. I just adjust for how many months the item will last.
 

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If buying small items like soap can blow your budget, you are budgetting way too precisely. Your budget should have a little slack in it to absorb this type of thing.
 

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Since you are asking, I will tell you.

I don't budget at this level. Actually, I don't really track spending at all - instead, I set financial (mostly savings) goals and as long as they are hit and we don't go into debt, I don't care what our money is spent on.

That said, I don't "stock up" or "pre-buy" household items, particularly food. When I had to clean out my grandmother's house, a few years ago, after she died, I was really, really, really struck by the amount of "stuff" she was (apparently) pre-buying. My parents have told me (over and over) that people raised in the Depression were just constitutionally preconditioned to buy stuff on sale, etc. and I appreciate that. I just...I never want to have that much "stuff" around me. I honestly have a visceral reaction to clutter and oversupply - I feel very psychologically weighed down if I have too much matter to care for.

(This from the woman who travelled for 6 months in Asia with a day pack. People KEPT telling me I "needed more" before I left but somehow the necessities of life were always available when I needed them - and the sense of freedom at only being responsible for ONE small pack! Amazing.)

Anyways. Short answer is that this is all behavioural for me, since I don't "need" to budget/track spending/pre-buy for financial reasons, so I've typed out my behavioural reasons for my, uh, behaviour.
 

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I'm an A. Stock up.

Normally I'll only do it with things that do not expire, but if it's food and you can freeze it... If the product could expire because you won't use it all, it's probably not worth getting a lot. Maybe get one extra.

IE chicken breasts were on for almost half price the other day. We have a bunch of chicken already in the freezer, however it wasn't this cheap... Spent $20 and probably saved $15 that would have been spent eventually on chicken.

Personally your budget numbers that you need to pay attention to are average amounts spent. If you do a big shop every other month you are going to destroy the budget for those months and then be way under on the others. However on average you are on budget.
 

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I'm with CC - we will have one open and one backup... our house isn't large enough to stock up on stuff like this. And besides, I want to go on a "giving away/freecycle" bing to get rid of the crap we already have, so there's no need to introduce more stuff, regardless if it's something we will use anyway.
 

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I set financial (mostly savings) goals and as long as they are hit and we don't go into debt, I don't care what our money is spent on.
This is a very liberating approach -- I did the same for years, but recently started setting budget limits for a few line items where I thought my spending seemed too high, the idea being that if I reduce my spending on those I can set higher savings goals. That's the theory anyway.

When I had to clean out my grandmother's house, a few years ago, after she died, I was really, really, really struck by the amount of "stuff" she was (apparently) pre-buying.
My parents did that as well; after we kids grew up and moved out I went back home for a visit and discovered that our "sports closet" in the basement (where all the hockey, football, baseball, and fishing gear had been stored) was now stuffed floor-to-ceiling with canned goods that they'd bought on sale over the years. They never used any of it.

(This from the woman who travelled for 6 months in Asia with a day pack.
Now that's something to aspire to!

The writer Bruce Chatwin famously claimed that he traveled the world with just his rucksack, but after reading his biography and interviews with people who knew him, I was surprised to learn that this turned out to be largely a farce. In fact on one of his trips he rented an entire train car to carry all the books, clothes, art objects, etc. that he had loaded himself down with.
 

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what if it does to a deeper discount later on? Stocking up too much would then be a disadvantage. I look at this like a poor hedge... in the end, most things will average out.
 

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Plus if you're stocking up on a LOT of things then that money may be better used elsewhere in the meantime - I doubt for the vast majority this would make any difference, but it is a small consideration.
 

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You have to be careful with these weekly "sales", tempting you to stock up every week.
Department stores often play around with quantity, quality, type, brand, etc. to create an impression of a sale.
If you like stocking up on sale, maintain a document or spreadsheet where you write down the brand, size, quantity, etc. and the unit price.
Before you buy, compare against this sheet to decide whether it really is a sale.
The frequency of such sales can cause you to keep stocking up throughout the year :rolleyes:
 

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I think you have to keep in mind here that we aren't talking about buying some product that you don't normally buy just because it is on sale. I agree that buying a box of 12 cans of mushroom soup because it's on a great sale doesn't make sense if you don't eat mushroom soup...

As long as you use the items that you buy in bulk, it saves money in the long run. This also assumes you are not space limited. Would you buy the small package of toilet paper (10 rolls) for $5(50c/roll) or would you buy the giant package of 100 rolls for $20?

Think of it as investing in toilet paper ;)
Either way your money is going down the drain... (I couldn't help it)
 
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