Bulk buying can halve your costs and not just at supermarkets

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BUYING in bulk brings big discounts for grocery shoppers, and people prepared to look beyond the supermarket shelves can also pocket significant savings.

From cleaning products to meat, cheap things do come in big packages, consumer experts say.

I think most people consider it too hard, and dont understand how much money they are going to save. If you are halving your bills, its a massive amount of money that you dont have to work to earn, says simplesavings.com.au founder Fiona Lippey.

But buying in bulk doesnt work for all things. Its pointless for perishables such as fruit and vegetables, and Queensland Consumers Association spokesman Ian Jarratt says its not a good idea if goods are going to be wasted.

Be careful that you dont consume more than what you normally would, he says.

Its easy to measure bulk prices against smaller packages at major supermarkets, which are the only retailers required by law to show the unit pricing of how much you get per 100g or 100ml. Jarratt says consumers have to work harder in other stores to compare the benefits of bulk buying, but its still worth shopping around.

Here are some goods that can be great to buy in bulk.

HEALTH SUPPLEMENTS

From multivitamins and fish oil to protein powder and weight-loss supplements, consumers can halve what they spend by choosing bulk packaging. You may need your smartphones calculator to work out prices per tablet or per gram, but its worth the effort.

Some health supplement makers have been dropping prices lately amid intense competition.

PET PRODUCTS

Jarratt says pet supply stores offer food, litter and other items in bulk packaging that can be much cheaper than the smaller versions.

Shop around and make sure you are getting a better buy. Costco operates on that basis things there are available in much bigger quantities.

CLEANING PRODUCTS

The cleaning products aisle at the supermarket is an expensive place to buy these items. Hardware warehouses and cleaning product wholesalers offer larger and cheaper bulk purchases.

Lippey says wholesalers will sell to retail customers. Google wholesale cleaning supplies every region has them. Its where cleaners get their supplies. They dont want fancy labels, they just what a product that works, she says.

MEAT

Lippey says you can halve your households meat bill by asking butcher about buying in bulk, then storing the portions in a chest freezer at home. Youll get many cuts of the cow so may need to do some research about recipes, she says.

Meat in a chest freezer is a massive saving. Its one of the few ways you can spend to save money

Twitter: @keanemoney