Dollars & Sense, Tip #3: Buying Generic vs. Name Brand

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Dollars & Sense Tip #3 is all about how we can save money by buying generic instead of name brand items. For a long time, Jason and I always felt like we had to buy name brand when shopping. It seems like after we had kids and were living on one income, we realized that we were spending a lot more on food and other items than we really needed to.

You can always clip coupons and use those when items are on sale, that is great if you have the time to organize and spend going to different stores. I would love it if I could do that, but at this point in my life I just don’t have extra time for it.

We started shopping at Aldi, which is mostly generic/their brands of items. They do have a little bit of name brand items but for the most part it’s all generic/their brand. We started shopping there when our oldest was a baby and we’ve been hooked ever since. We finally realized that there are so many items you can buy generic that are almost exactly the same as some of the name brands of the same item.

Even for us, though there are a few items that are a must have when it comes to generic vs. name brand. Everyone has their certain items that they like in certain brands. The key is to pick and choose what the most important items you prefer to have in name brand and then use generic for all the rest.

Also, the motto I always use is “I’ll try anything once”. We kind of started out with that mentality about buying generic brands. If we tried it once and couldn’t stand the taste, then we’d switch to another brand. This doesn’t happen very often, but I guess you have to decide what your family’s tastes prefer.

Here is a really good article I came across on this subject that may be helpful to you:

CBS Money Watch, Generic vs. brand name: Is there really a difference?   

I looked up 5 different items to price compare, keeping in mind that prices at all stores do change from time to time. Here is what I found:

                                                                         Walmart              Aldi Brand

  1. Scott Toilet Paper 12 rolls                      $9.28                   $5.89
  2. Rice Krispies 12 ounces                         $2.98                   $1.79
  3. Kraft Macaroni & Cheese                       $0.98                   $0.45
  4. Quaker Instant Oatmeal 10 packets      $2.50                   $1.60
  5. Daisy Sour Cream 16 ounces                $1.98                   $0.99

Totals                                                                  $17.72                 $10.72

So that comes out to exactly $7 that I saved my family with buying Aldi’s brand versus the same product in name brand at Walmart. Like I said before, prices do fluctuate, but it is definitely worth at least looking into what your family can save if you change up the brands of what your buying. There are times when you won’t save as much buying generic, especially if an item is on sale and/or you have a coupon. So definitely be aware of those times and what is truly the best bargain.

So with this post, I wanted to make you aware that you can save money buying generic. Just remember to do your homework and make sure you are getting the best bargain for your family. What works for one family, doesn’t always work the best for another. In the end, you just need to do what works best for your family!

Happy Bargain Shopping and Blessings!



Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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4 thoughts on “Dollars & Sense, Tip #3: Buying Generic vs. Name Brand

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