31 Ideas for Doing Thanksgiving Inexpensively

If you’ve ever hosted Thanksgiving dinner, you likely know how easy it is for costs to spiral. Between appetizers, drinks, the turkey, sides, and pies, you can easily rack up (multiple!) large tabs at the grocery store.

Even if you’re just traveling to have Thanksgiving with family or friends, you can end up putting a big dent in your spending account. Airlines and hotels often charge a premium during high-demand times like Thanksgiving weekend.

To avoid overspending just a few weeks before gift-giving season, read on. We’ve got 31 ways to keep your Thanksgiving costs under control.

Thanksgiving on a Budget: How to Save

Here are some simple strategies for doing Thanksgiving inexpensively this year. Bonus: They can also help you save time — and stress.

1. Stocking Up as Stuff Goes on Sale

Throughout November, stores typically have different Thanksgiving dinner items on sale. Grabbing nonperishables whenever you see them on discount can save a bundle, and also help spread out the cost of the meal.

2. Making It a Potluck

Whether you’re celebrating with family or friends, you can make Thanksgiving inexpensive by asking your guests to each contribute a dish. You can coordinate who is bringing what in advance to make sure there are no overlaps or gaps.

3. Checking Coupon Sites

Before heading out to the grocery store, you may want to check out coupon websites like Coupons.com , LOZO , and CouponMom to find deals on the items on your shopping list.

4. Going to Manufacturers’ Websites

A few major brands likely produce many of the items on your Thanksgiving shopping list. It can be worth checking websites like Butterball and General Mills for coupons and seasonal promos.

5. Getting Your Grocery Store’s App

Many supermarkets have apps that offer coupons and deals. Sometimes you can get a reward just for signing up.

6. Hitting More Than One Store

Going to just one supermarket is obviously more convenient. But if you check the circulars, you may see different items on sale at different stores. Going to a few different grocery stores could lead to significant savings.

7. Buying a Store-Brand Frozen Turkey

Typically, a turkey makes up about 40% of the cost of the Thanksgiving meal. Opting for a store-brand frozen bird, rather than a fresh one, can significantly lower your total outlay for the meal.

8. Splitting the Costs

You may want to consider teaming up with a sibling or other family member to co-host this year’s gathering. That way you can spit all of the costs, rather than foot the entire bill.

9. Buying Basics in Bulk

Buying staples like flour, potatoes, eggs, cream, and butter from a warehouse store like Costco or Sam’s Club can help you spend a lot less on food, as long as you’re not buying more than you need or will use up after Thanksgiving.

Recommended: How to Buy in Bulk: Beginners Guide

10. Going Generic

Many times, generic or store-brand products are just as good as the brand name version, and the only real difference is price.

11. Asking Guests to BYOB

Wine, beer, and other alcohol can add up quickly. One easy way to save money is to ask your guests to bring their favorite beverage. That way, everyone will get to sip something they love, and you won’t have to shell out all that extra money.

12. Sticking With Seasonal Produce

Vegetables that are in season in November, such as sweet potatoes, squash, Brussels sprouts, and white potatoes, will typically cost a lot less than out-of-season picks, such as corn, asparagus, and green beans.

13. Going With Frozen Veggies

If you want to use veggies that aren’t in season, you may want to choose the frozen versions, which are generally much cheaper than fresh.

14. Baking Your Own Bread

Baking bread can be fun, and typically involves spending a lot less than buying rolls or loaves at a bakery. You can also make bread ahead of time and stick it in the freezer until the big day.

15. Going Simple with Sides

It can be tempting to try a new gourmet recipe you saw online or in your favorite food magazine, but fancy recipes often require specialty ingredients — and can end up costing a lot to make.

16. Not Going Overboard

You may love the idea of giving your guests a cornucopia of options, especially when it comes to appetizers and sides. But making a lot of different dishes can lead to a much longer and costlier grocery bill. And, much of that food may end up going to waste.

17. Getting a Bigger Turkey Than You Need

Yes, this sounds like a way to increase costs. Going with a larger bird, however, can pay off by giving you several additional meals, like turkey sandwiches and turkey pot pies, you can make later without going back to the store, or spending another dime.

18. Considering Pre-Made Dishes

Sometimes store-made dishes and desserts can actually be cheaper than buying all of the ingredients and making these things yourself. It can be worth doing some quick math at the store. This move can also save you time, as well as stress.

19. Shopping Your Pantry

You may already have quite a few shelf-stable items in your pantry (maybe even from last Thanksgiving) that you need this year. It can be well worth the time and effort to give your cabinets a once-over before you head to the market.

20. Watching a Movie at Home

Though many people have a tradition of going out to the movies on Thanksgiving, theater tickets and concessions can be pricey. Instead, you may want to consider renting a movie from a streaming service (or finding a free one) that everyone can watch together on Thanksgiving night.

21. Not Going to the Mall

The average American dropped about $312 going shopping over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend in 2020, according to the National Retail Federation . If you don’t want to be tempted by Black Friday bargains, your best bet may be to avoid stores and stay off-line.

Recommended: How to Cut Back on Spending

22. Using Up Airline Points

If you need to travel by plane over Thanksgiving, you may want to consider using any points you’ve racked up with the airlines or on your credit card to score a free or discounted ticket.

23. Going on a Staycation

While taking a vacation over the Thanksgiving holiday can be fun, it could add up to thousands of dollars between the flights, hotels, and rental car, depending on where you go. You may want to consider staying home and planning a series of local adventures instead.

24. Staying in an Airbnb

If you normally stay in a hotel when you visit family or friends over Thanksgiving, you may be able to save by going with an Airbnb instead, especially if you can share it with other people who are coming in from out of town.

25. Checking Warehouse Clubs for Travel Deals

Before you book any Thanksgiving travel, you may want to check for deals offered by your local warehouse club. If you are a member, you may be able to access discounts on hotels, rental cars, vacation packages, and more.

26. Asking for Travel Discounts

Whether you’re renting a car or staying in a hotel over Thanksgiving, it can be a good idea to ask if you are eligible for any discounts when you book. You may be able to score a lower price if you’re a AAA member, a student, a resident of the state, a member of the military, or over age 55.

Recommended: 27 Tips For Finding The Top Travel Deals

27. Making a Budget

Whether you’re hosting or heading out of town, it can be a wise idea to come up with a total amount you can afford to spend on Thanksgiving. You can then make a list of expected expenses, and determine how much you can realistically spend on each item.

Recommended: Building a Line Item Budget

28. Going DIY with Decor

A fun way to save money on Thanksgiving is to recruit the kids in the family to create your decorations. They could collect and paint pine cones, create cut-out turkeys (using their hands to trace them), or make a craft paper tablecloth where everyone can write or draw what they are thankful for.

29. Handing the Reins to Someone Else

Hosting can be fun and rewarding, but if you need a reprieve from the work — and expense — you may want to see if someone else wants to step up this year. You can offer to bring your famous balsamic roasted Brussels sprouts and garlic mashed potatoes to make the host’s job easier.

30. Going Out to Eat

Local restaurants may be offering Thanksgiving specials to bring in customers. You could save big if you go out to eat (and split the tab) rather than host everyone at your home.

31. Volunteering for the Holiday

Helping out at a local soup kitchen can be a great way to get into the holiday spirit and have a chance to focus on giving back, rather than spending.

TheTakeaway

You can enjoy Thanksgiving (and the upcoming December holidays) without running up expensive credit card debt that you may struggle to pay back.

One great way to keep your holiday costs under control is to set up a simple budget and then make sure you stick to it by keeping track of your expenses as you go.

With a SoFi Money® cash management account, you can easily track and categorize your weekly spending right in the dashboard of the SoFi Money app.

Learn how SoFi Money can help you keep tabs on spending this holiday season.

Photo credit: iStock/GMVozd


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Get a Free Turkey From These Stores for Thanksgiving

In addition to the free turkey, you’ll also receive a BJ’s Award which will be loaded onto your account on Dec. 2. You’ll then have until Dec. 16 to claim your .
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But keep your eyes on the Cub Food weekly ads in the coming weeks. Last year, turkeys were going for 99 cents per pound in the two weeks leading up to Thanksgiving. Good news for folks in Illinois and Minnesota, where the Cub Food stores are located.
Shoppers at two of the nation’s largest grocery chains — Safeway and Publix — should keep an eye on advertised sales as Thanksgiving gets closer. Prices were not advertised at the time of this writing but these stores generally have some of the lowest prices around because of the volume of sales.
Turkey is the time-honored centerpiece of most Thanksgiving Day meals and we’ve gotten used to it being an economical buy, especially as the holiday (Nov. 26 this year) grows closer.

How to Get a Free Turkey This Year

In general, it’s not worth it to spend 0 on random items just to score a bird you could get for to . But if you’re going to spend that money anyway, why not get the turkey on the house?
These meals consist of turkey, dressing, potatoes, peas, corn, cranberries, rolls, pumpkin pie and milk. They are delivered directly to your home, and available to all families and individuals in need — not just seniors.
Here are stores that have announced their free turkey promos for 2021.
With the numbers we currently have, we can assume the price of frozen turkey is currently about .46 per pound. This number will vary greatly by region.
If you or someone you know can’t afford to spend the money to get a free turkey from the grocery stores above, you can look to your community for help.

1. Acme Markets

That might seem like a lot — and it is! — but it includes purchases now through Nov. 25. If you spend per week on groceries and have been shopping at Weis each week since then, you’ll be more than covered by Thanksgiving.
When you purchase 0 worth of qualifying items at BJ’s Wholesale Club, you’ll be eligible for a free Butterball turkey. To claim your turkey, you’ll need to be a BJ’s Wholesale member and clip the free turkey coupon before checkout. You can claim this offer through Nov. 24.

2. Foodtown

If you don’t want a frozen turkey, you can pick a free Stouffer’s lasagna (there is a vegetarian option) or a store gift card instead.
An exception is made if you shop at locations in any of the following areas. When you shop here, your spending between October 22 and Thanksgiving day will count towards the 0 minimum spend:

  • New Jersey
  • New Hartford, Connecticut
  • East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania

Keep an eye out for even better deals throughout the month of November. In the past, City Market, a Kroger store in the Rocky Mountains region, has offered deals under The average turkey cost roughly .21 per pound last year, which came out to .36 for a 16-pound bird, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual survey.
One word of warning on our list: All of these offers vary by store, so you’ll want to call ahead to make sure your favorite location is participating.

4. Hy-Vee

At an Aldi’s in Pittsburgh, we found Butterball turkeys for .39 per pound.

5. ShopRite

But this year, a perfect storm of climate-related disasters, labor shortages and general supply chain issues have pushed the price of poultry up 10.5% over the past year.
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Last year during the week of Thanksgiving, Shaw’s offered turkeys for 39 cents per pound to customers who made a purchase. We can expect to see those numbers go up this year, but there may be another like deal that saves you a lot of money at the Northeastern food chain.

6. Weis Market

Acme is giving away free turkeys when you clip the free turkey coupon in the Acme for U app.
However, this is another store that tends to offer great promotional pricing during the month of November. Last year, mPerks members could get their turkeys for 31 cents per pound during the nine days leading up to the holiday.
In years past, the beloved Northeast food chain now in some Mid-Atlantic states has offered turkey for as low as Certificates are good from Nov. 12 through Nov. 25.

7. BJ’s Wholesale Club

Foodtown locations in the Northeast are rewarding customers with free turkeys when they shop with their Club Card. You will need to spend 0 between October 29 and Thanksgiving Day.
From Nov. 8 through Nov. 24, Fareway customers can get a free turkey up to 14 pounds when they spend at least at Fareway’s fresh meat counter. This promotion should be automatically applied when you bring your meat counter purchase and turkey to the checkout line.

8. Fareway

That was the lowest it had been since 2010. But you can count on 2021 being much more expensive.

9. Winn-Dixie

Currently, the price per pound for frozen turkeys at Cub Food is higher than the average: .79 per pound.
Local churches and charities have also been collecting donated items to provide low-income families in their communities with Thanksgiving meals. Check with your church or local charity if you need help providing your family with a Thanksgiving meal.
Ready to stop worrying about money?
Then, you’ll have to spend 0 or more while shopping in store through Nov. 25. After you’ve met that minimum spend, you can claim your free turkey at the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states chain.
Wegmans and Tops work hard to be competitive with one another. Currently, you can get a Shady Brook Farms frozen turkey at Wegmans for .69 per pound — the same price as Tops’ cheapest turkey.

A woman watches as someone cooks the turkey.
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Where to Get a Turkey for Cheap

If you can bank 400 Giant Choice Reward e points by Nov. 25, you can redeem your points for a certificate for a free turkey. If turkey isn’t your thing, you can also redeem your certificate for a free Stouffer’s family-size lasagna or a free tofurky roast. You can also redeem your certificate for a free kosher turkey.
Jamie Cattanach and Brynne Conroy are veteran contributors to The Penny Hoarder writing on a variety of topics including lifestyle and career. 
The Salvation Army also gives free Thanksgiving dinners to those in need. Each program is administered locally, so you will want to look up your local chapter.

Aldi

If you’re feeding a larger crowd, you might not get a free turkey, but getting your vaccinations will significantly reduce the cost of Thanksgiving dinner.
If you’re part of Weis’s rewards program, your reward points could get you a Thanksgiving turkey for free.

City Market

Earn points on purchases through Nov. 25 — Thanksgiving Day — with your Price Plus club card.
It’s important to note that your points do have an expiration date, which is printed on the bottom of your receipts. You can claim your free turkey between Nov. 4 and Nov. 25.

Cub Food

Shaw’s also tends to price match during the holiday season, so if you see a lower price elsewhere be sure to talk to your cashier.
It’s pretty simple: You earn one point for every dollar you spend, and it takes 400 points to receive a free turkey, tofurky, tofurkey ham or a Weis-brand frozen lasagna.

Meijer

Redeem your points between Nov. 4 and Nov. 25 to secure the low price of 59 cents per pound.
Maybe earning 400 points to get a free turkey isn’t reasonable for your household. But if you rack up at least 200 points prior to Thanksgiving, you can get a serious discount on your turkey at Weis, a Mid-Atlantic states chain.

Shaw’s

Food banks are hard at work hosting turkey drives and fundraising events to help put Thanksgiving meals on the tables of those in need. Food bank turkey distributions are usually held during the weekend before and days leading up to Thanksgiving. You can search by state or ZIP code for your local food bank.
Shaw’s has a wide variety of turkey choices at different price points. The cheapest currently available is .29 per pound.
According to the New York Times, the price of corn — which is what we feed most commercial turkeys in the United States — has doubled in 2021. Truckers who transport our food are able to demand higher wages in the current economy, all resulting in an estimated 25 cents price per pound increase.

Tops

As the holiday gets closer, you’ll want to keep an eye on Tops weekly ads for its stores in New York, Pennsylvania and Vermont.
For example, in Montgomery, Alabama, you can get a 10-pound turkey from Winn Dixie for .99/pound, which can feed five to eight people. (If you want leftovers, figure on 1½ pounds per person.) Using your vaccination gift cards, you could get your turkey for free.
Meals on Wheels has a program specifically for the holiday season: Thanksgiving Meals on Wheels.

Walmart

United Way chapters also host turkey drives to help families in need. You can search for your local United Way chapter.

Wegmans

You can sign up for this program by contacting your local Meals on Wheels program.
Currently, you can get a frozen turkey at the Midwestern chain Meijer for .39 per pound.

Weis Market

You can pick up your free item any day up to and including Thanksgiving Day.
Luckily, there are a number of grocers who offer free turkey promotions to bring more hungry holiday shoppers into their stores and to help keep budgets in check.

A man hands off a box of food to someone driving a truck.
Getty Images

Free Thanksgiving Turkey and Meals for Families in Need

This year, the grocery chain is offering a gift card to everyone who gets their flu or COVID-19 shots, and another gift card if you get both.

Food Banks

Once you spend a certain amount (check your local store’s circular for the amount), present your Price Plus club card to the cashier to receive a free turkey, ham, turkey breast, kosher chicken, lasagna or tofurky.

United Way

Walmart offers great deals on turkeys. Even weeks out from the big day itself, you can get a Honeysuckle white frozen turkey for just 87 cents per pound — the lowest price currently offered by any store on this list. This price may go down even further in the coming weeks.

Meals on Wheels

While these promotions are no longer linked to a free turkey, getting your vaccinations this year could still yield you a free turkey depending on how large of a crowd you’re feeding.
At the time of writing, Tops turkeys are a little expensive at .69 per pound for an air fry turkey.
This is lower than the average, but Aldi is known for offering even lower prices during the week of Thanksgiving. In years past, these specials have featured prices under per pound.

Salvation Army

Think about some of the food you’ll be making for December celebrations and if you need to stock up on spices, dried herbs or other shelf-stable ingredients, you can buy those now. Stock, flour, sugar, canned goods and more will keep through the next cooking cycle.

Churches and Charities

But here are some stores coming in under that average number, and some stores where we can reasonably expect prices to go down during Thanksgiving promotions over the next few weeks.
In years past, Winn-Dixie has offered a free turkey when you get a flu shot during the Thanksgiving season. <!–

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Purchase a Hormel Cure 81 ham during the month of November, and Hy-Vee will reward you with a free,10 to 14 pound Honeysuckle white turkey.

4 Ways to Keep New Construction From Going Wrong

When Kerri Fivecoat-Campbell was building her home, she lived 300 miles away from the construction site deep in the Ozark Mountain woods. Unable to make the long drive on a frequent basis, she relied on her contractor and project manager—a family member—to build her dream cabin, a 480-square-foot lakeside abode.

“Imagine our excitement to drive up to our little lake home … and find out it was facing the wrong direction,” she says. “There was a massive communications breakdown.”

Instead of the front of the home facing the driveway, it looked into the woods. And the back deck—once intended to overlook the lake—now was situated on the side of the property.

“The contractor didn’t think his directions were correct, but he was in the woods, miles from a phone with no cell service at the time,” says Fivecoat-Campbell, the author of “Living Large in Our Little House.”

With an estimated cost of $6,000 to fix everything but no desire to cause a family rift, Fivecoat-Campbell and her husband decided to leave things be.

“All worked out in the end,” she says. “We can easily see guests driving into the drive from the ‘back’ deck.”

The potential problems with new construction are terrifying—like your home literally built backward, mold, or poor foundation—but there are ways to prevent the panic in the first place. Here’s what builders recommend.

1. Stalk the construction site

When it comes to new construction, perhaps the most frightening part is all the unknowns. Maybe a rainy summer and poor site management left your lumber with the beginnings of wood rot, or subcontractors failed to nail down the subfloors properly. Or perhaps the whole darned house is backward.

That’s why you need to try to stop by the site frequently. We mean, like, a lot. The final walk-through should never be the first time you see the space, says Howie Berman, COO of The Ruby Group, a development and construction management company in Goshen, NY.

Berman’s company recommends three sets of walk-throughs:

  • After the home has been surveyed and staked (an ideal time to make sure it’s situated properly)
  • After framing is completed and mechanical installation is underway (this is the best time to address any problems within the walls, like electrical wiring or ventilation)
  • The final walk-through, where you and the builder will review the punch list (more on that later)

But feel free to come by more often—up to every day. The earlier you can bring up potential issues, the better your chances of a quick and simple resolution.

“Mistakes are certainly made, and there is nothing wrong with bringing them up,” Berman says. “Most problems can be handled fairly easily through communication. The biggest thing is in how you approach the conversation. No one wants to hear it start with, ‘My brother-in-law is in construction, and he said…’”

Keep in mind that something might look like a problem, but is really just incomplete construction.

“It’s not always discernible to the untrained eye,” Berman says. Bring up problems with your builder, but understand that he may have a plan in place to fix—or finish—the apparent issue.

2. Pay attention to your punch list

Before closing, developers or builders will walk you through your newly built home and let you point out any defects or imperfections that need to be fixed before moving day. If there’s anything wrong—from disconnected light switches to broken cabinetry to scratches on the wall—now is your opportunity to bring it up.

Bring a pre-made checklist, and don’t feel bad about being thorough. (Some construction teams may even have specialized software to help you create this list, commonly called a punch list in the construction world.)

Bottom line: If you see something, say something—builders can’t correct problems they don’t know about.

Once all of the items on your punch list have been resolved, you can feel comfortable closing on the house—which should ideally happen after builders fix the problems.

3. Get familiar with your warranty—and don’t be afraid to use it

Most states mandate construction warranties for new homes, often backed by the builders and usually spanning one or more years. Making a claim on your policy is the best way to fix latent problems caused by errors, poor craftsmanship, or dumb luck—like mold, an increasingly common problem in new homes.

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Another frequently found defect, especially in the Northeast, is poorly installed windows. If the silicone sealant isn’t applied properly, “there could be a small, slow leak that could go undetected for a long time, leading to significant damage to the framing,” Berman says.

Some problems may take time to appear—cracks might appear in the walls, or crown molding might separate as the home settles—so consider hiring an inspector for an “11th month warranty inspection.” Consider it a final final walk-through: They’ll find any new or emerging problems before your one-year warranty expires.

Asking your builders about their warranty is an excellent way to vet the company.

“Be on the lookout to see if the builder has a process for making a warranty claim,” Berman says. “This will show you whether or not the builder is prepared to lead the process, which he should be.”

4. Stay flexible with your timeline

You might be eager to move in, but construction works on its own schedule—which might not even line up with your contractor’s estimated time frame.

“Homebuilding is a complex process that’s subject to all sorts of things like changing weather conditions,” Berman says. “The time estimate is likely to change over the course of a project.”

Very few builders will agree to any contract that assigns penalties for delays. There are too many things that can go wrong, from a freak snowstorm to unexpected foundation problems. Instead, discuss milestones (think: completed framing or roofing), and time frames expected for each.

If you’re on a tight deadline and would like your builder to commit to a timeline, Berman says you should “be prepared to give something up.”

You might pay a higher price for the rushed work, but at least you’ll have the security of a contract. But if your time frame is flexible, allowing the builders an adaptable timeline might mean fewer long-term errors—and a happier you in your brand-new home.

Source: realtor.com

Rock On! Music Legend Bill Graham’s Estate on the Market in Marin County

Rock and roll impresario Bill Graham was also a real estate savant. The Corte Madera, CA, property he once owned is on the market for a jaw-dropping $25 million. It’s also the most expensive listing in Marin County.

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This exclusive enclave was the last place Graham lived; the San Francisco Bay Area concert promoter died in 1991. Isobel Wiener of the San Francisco brokerage of Sotheby’s International Realty is the listing agent.

Graham’s home was largely demolished and replaced in 2003 with a 13,635-square-foot “ecologically correct” structure on the nearly 11-acre lot. Where possible, elements of the original home were preserved, notes Wiener.

“There’s a beautiful granite table on the outside terrace that remains. There are certain parts of the property that were parts of the original home,” she says.

Bill Graham's propertyBill Graham's property
Aerial view

(realtor.com)

Graham’s musical legacy is also apparent in the design of the home’s professional music studio and theater. Santana and the Grateful Dead were reportedly among the musical groups to visit the estate.

Even if you’re not in the mood to jam, the property certainly rocks. Designed by green architect Sim Van der Ryn, the “ecologically correct” estate was constructed with reclaimed and sustainably sourced materials. The landscaping features native plants and eucalyptus trees.

Pool with slidePool with slide
Pool with slide

(realtor.com)

There’s also plenty of luxe amenities, including a pool, water slide, cabana, gym, and racquetball court, according to Wiener. There’s even a small orchard with plum, orange, and apple trees.

Natural light in the living roomNatural light in the living room
Living room

(realtor.com)

The spacious residence has seven bedrooms, five baths, and nine half-baths. There’s also a separate guesthouse.

Professional music studioProfessional music studio
Music studio

(realtor.com)

The price takes into account “the size of the estate and the amount of money that it took to build ecologically,” Wiener says.

Bill Graham's granite tableBill Graham's granite table
Lounge area with granite table

(realtor.com)

While the home looks like an oasis far from the madding world, it’s only 10 miles from San Francisco.

“It is so close to the city, and yet you have this unique country estate that you would never find anywhere else,” the agent says.

Source: realtor.com

Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale Quietly List Beverly Hills Mansion

No longer happily-ever-after couple Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale are quietly searching for a buyer for their home in Beverly Hills, Variety says. With their divorce finalized earlier this year, the couple is asking $35 million for their 90210 digs.

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The 11,800-square-foot mansion in the ridgetop Summit gated community sports an impressive celebrity pedigree. The chart-topping couple bought the estate in 2006 from nightclub mogul Sam Nazarian for $13.25 million. He had purchased the property for $11 million in 2004 from Jennifer Lopez, who paid $4.3 million in 2000.

Somewhere along the way, the contemporary, located between Beverly Hills and Studio City, was boldly and colorfully renovated. The listing from Westside Estate Agency says the mansion is “literally beyond description.”

Nevertheless, we’ll try. The estate features six en suite bedrooms and a master suite with two huge bathrooms and two dressing rooms. There’s also a guesthouse, pool, and tennis court.

The manse includes an entry with black-and-white marble floors inlaid in a head-spinning geometric pattern; a sunken living room with fireplace and vaulted ceiling; and a kitchen with white lacquer cabinets, a black granite center island, and striped walls that seem to hide storage space. Interiors were designed by celeb favorite Kelly Wearstler.

In case you’re not a fan of “The Voice,” No Doubt front woman and solo star Stefani was a judge on the TV talent show alongside country star Blake Shelton in 2014. Longtime couple Stefani and Rossdale were splitting around the same time. Shelton had recently split from Miranda Lambert and soon struck up a romance with Stefani.

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Source: realtor.com

Is Your Dream Home Out of Your Price Range? There’s Hope Yet

From the moment you walked in, the house was calling to you. That chef’s kitchen! The ballroom-size playroom! Wait a second, is that a fireplace in the master? Done and done. This is your perfect home…

That is, until you recheck the price and discover it’s just a bit out of your price range. Cruel, cruel world!

There are precious few things in life more exciting than finding your true dream home—and not many things more soul-crushing than realizing you can’t afford it. Or, can you? If you’re determined to stretch your budget the way certain presidential candidates stretch the concept of “sarcasm,” there are ways to pull off this monetary magic without becoming completely house poor.

We’ll show you how to make your budget mesh with your fantasy. For real.

Budget saver No. 1: Negotiate the price

“Everything is always negotiable,” says Chantay Bridges with TruLine Realty in Los Angeles. “You’d be surprised at what sellers, agents, and buyers alike will compromise on.”

You might not get what you want, but you never know—the seller may be extremely motivated because of a move, work relocation, or divorce, for example.

“They may just be looking for a fair offer and would be willing to sell to you for a little less if they can close faster as a result.”

You’d be amazed by how many people make no effort to parley on price. Smart haggling can get you far! Do it.

Budget saver No. 2: Work the programs

There are a wide variety of programs, particularly down payment assistance programs, that help people achieve their dream of homeownership. And contrary to popular belief, you don’t necessarily have to be low-income to quality.

“You may discover a first-time home buyers program that can make your home of choice more affordable by providing assistance with the closing costs or the down payment,” says Bridges. Check with your lender on programs available in your county, since they change frequently. (You can also review some of the state-by-state options.)

What’s that you say? The home is a dream in terms of neighborhood and square footage, but a nightmare on the inside?

If you’re considering a fixer-upper, you can look into financing it with a renovation loan, suggests Sarah Valentini, president and co-founder of Radius Financial Group. “This will enable a home buyer to make desired improvements and have them financed into the mortgage.”

Budget saver No. 3: Massage that mortgage

“The biggest mistake I see a majority of people make is blindly asking for a 30-year fixed mortgage,” Valentini says. Many home buyers, especially millennials, would be better off if they considered other options such as a five-, seven-, or 10-year adjustable-rate mortgage, she says.

“We live in a much more transient society than we did 20 years ago, and people all too often pay for the ‘security’ of a 30-year fixed loan when, in fact, they will likely be selling or refinancing in less than 10 years,” she adds. Looking into a different loan type can translate into lower payments upfront.

Home buyers can also look into creative options for their private mortgage insurance (e.g., having it paid by the lender or seller), which can help you achieve a lower monthly payment.

Budget saver No. 4: Check for ways this home itself could save you money

Sometimes that more expensive house payment will allow you to save in other areas. For example, maybe it makes your commute shorter and less expensive, or it’s in a better school district so you no longer have to foot expensive private school tuition, says Realtor® Jose Tijam with Grand Avenue Realty & Lending in Anaheim, CA.

Another possibility: The energy efficiency of a newer home can reduce your utility bills and might make up some of the cost difference of an older home.

“Sometimes a higher-priced home can actually cost the same as a lower-priced one when you do the math on other factors,” Valentini says.

Budget saver No. 5: Put the decision into perspective

On the one hand, you don’t want to be dumb. “If a home is truly out of my clients’ budget, I would emphatically advise them to continue looking,” Valentini says. However, she adds that while it is never advisable to buy more than you can afford, it is important to consider all factors before passing on a dream home.

“Buying a home is not something to take lightly,” she says. “You will likely live there for quite some time, so it is important not to just settle,” especially if there are ways to get creative and make it work.

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Tijam notes that if your dream house is, say, $25,000 over your ideal budget, it may seem like a huge chunk of money. However, the sting is lessened when you imagine that amount spread over the life of the mortgage.

“When you do that math on a 30-year mortgage, it ends up being only roughly a $70 monthly increase, and often my clients find they can make adjustments to accommodate the difference.”

While he respects the initial budget that his clients have set, he says, he can relate to his clients who have fallen in love with their dream home but find it unaffordable.

“My family and I found a home we adored, but it was slightly over our budget,” he recalls. “We hesitated—and once we figured out that we could probably make it work, another buyer had made an offer. It’s something we still think about from time to time, and I share this experience with the people I help.”

—————

Watch: The Features That Help a Home Sell Fastest

Source: realtor.com

10 Great Sites to Buy Cheap Eyeglasses Online

In addition to accepting most major insurance plans, the company offers a hybrid shopping experience that allows you to order your lenses online, then get them fitted and adjusted at one of their 1,000+ locations.
Roka accepts most major insurance plans including Aetna, BCBS, Humana, and United Healthcare, among others.
Glasses USA is another online eyewear retailer offering a huge selection (as in over 7,000 frames) of cheap glasses. Unlike some of the competition, Glasses USA also offers free shipping and returns, as well as a 365-day warranty.
Source: thepennyhoarder.com
Prices start at and purchases are backed by a one-year warranty. There are hundreds of styles for you (or your kiddos) to choose from.

Buying Cheap Eyeglasses Online

Basic Warby lenses include a scratch-resistant treatment, a moisture-repelling coating, and UV protection. Progressive lenses (those that function as both reading and distance glasses) start at 5, while tinted prescription lenses cost an additional 0 from the base model.
In addition to the sheer convenience of being able to try frames on at home, there’s also the fact that shopping online for prescription glasses usually means more choice — and a lot more savings.
But whether you like pinching tiny plastic orbs into your eyes or not— chances are you’ll still want an attractive pair of frames that you actually enjoy wearing. The idea of discount glasses might imply that you’ll be wearing tacky, cheap frames. Not so, and the beauty of affordable glasses is that you can buy multiple pairs when you shop online.
By combining the best of both in-person and online shopping experiences, Lenscrafters is changing the way people shop for eyewear. This even if they don’t have the corner on cheap prescription eyeglasses on the market.
This certainly makes shopping for online glasses worth it.

1. Warby Parker

Since you can expect to replace your eyeglasses every one to three years, it’s worthwhile to find affordable glasses by buying online, especially if you’re the kind of person who likes to switch up your style every few years.
Contributor Larissa Runkle specializes in finance, real estate and lifestyle topics. She is a regular contributor to The Penny Hoarder.  
This online vendor offers a little bit of everything when you’re ready to buy glasses online, including its own ultra-affordable, in-house-designed prescription lenses and some of your favorite brands like Ray-Ban and Oakley.

2. Zenni Optical

The company is considered an “out-of-network” provider by several major vision insurance plans, including Davis Vision, EyeMed, Spectra/United Healthcare, and VSP, meaning you can collect reimbursement for your frames if working with one of these insurance companies.
Once you decide to find that stylish set of frames, get ready for a lot of options as you shop online.
If you’re looking for a lot of choice (and the modern convenience of trying on eyeglass frames at home), you might just want to start your search at Warby Parker. With prescription eyeglasses starting at just , and a variety of insurance providers accepted (including Cigna, Aetna, and Anthem, among others), Warby makes it easy to find great frames at any budget. Plus, you might need a pair of prescription sunglasses for driving and reading at the beach.

They also have a huge inventory of clearance frames starting at just .95.

3. Glasses USA

The company also offers fast delivery (two-day delivery for ) and a one-year warranty, which will replace your lenses for free if they break. They also allow you to purchase any of their prescription glasses using an FSA or HSA account.
Don’t want to try on frames with their at-home program? Not to worry, as the company also has a virtual try-on program.
Many of their fashionable lenses start at just .94, and you can find frames for even less in the “Under ” category.

4. EyeBuyDirect

While many of the glasses here start at around (including progressive lenses), you can find clearance pairs for as low as .
Warby usually takes five to 10 business days to ship your order, with home try-ons arriving in about five days.
If you lead a super active lifestyle, you might be tempted to try Roka.
In a recent survey from Consumer Reports, people buying glasses online paid a median of , while those shopping in-store spent 4.

A woman laughs while wearing black framed eyeglasses.
Getty Images

5. Lenscrafters

This company is taking the at-home trial to the next level by encouraging would-be customers to pick four frames and actually wear them while exercising — before ordering their favorite pair.
The company offers a variety of popular brands including Ray-Ban, Versace, Michael Kors and Coach, among others. Because many of their glasses tend to be high-end brands, the prices are also higher — often running anywhere between 0 and 0 a pair.
Some highlights of Roka frames include a lightweight frame with no pressure points and a design that won’t fall off during all your favorite activities.
When you sign up with your email, you’ll automatically get 15% off. The company had a fall promo for 50% off your second pair of glasses.

6. Roka

Besides being crazy-affordable from the get-go, we spotted some amazing promo codes when we visited, such as a buy-one, get-one deal and a 50% off (plus free shipping) code for first-time customers.
With virtual try-ons, a huge selection, and frames starting at , EyeBuyDirect makes it easy to find stylish and affordable lenses.
Probably one of the cheapest online eyewear stores out there, Zenni sells single-prescription glasses starting at just .95.
Zenni also offers a virtual try-on tool to help you pick which frames best fit your face.
You can use your FSA or HSA card to purchase your next pair of glasses with Liingo, and if you like them — don’t forget to tell a friend. You’ll get off every successful referral and your friends will get off their first order of or more.
Looking for more options? They also sell affordable prescription sunglasses (starting at ), blue-light-blocking glasses (starting at ) and tinted glasses (starting at ).

7. Ambr

Another eyeglass company offering an at-home try-on program, Liingo Eyewear features stylish prescription and blue light glasses (and sunglasses), starting at just .
The good news is that buying online eyeglasses from Lenscrafters might just save you money on contacts if you catch one of their promotions, such as a recent promo for 40% off contact lenses with any frame order. Despite the crazy-low affordable prices, Zenni lenses are actually still good quality according to customer reviews, and all come with UV protection and an initial 30-day protection plan that replaces broken frames for free.
You can make purchases using an FSA or HSA account, and the company also partners directly with a number of popular vision insurance providers. The company was running some pretty sweet promos recently, including a 30% off student discount and a Amazon gift card when you refer a friend.

8. Discount Glasses

Ambr also has a small line of blue-light, non-prescription kids’ glasses starting at .
Like most things, buying prescription eyeglasses online has become the new norm.
These specialized frames start at a slightly higher price point (5 per pair), but with their comprehensive at-home trial, it’s also way more likely you walk away with something you really love.
You can even buy your frames using your HSA or FSA account.
Eyecare in general has become a lot more affordable in recent years. There’s even a website offering online eye exams that take 10 minutes or less and only cost .

9. Glasses Shop

Here are 10 affordable places to buy your next pair of cheap prescription glasses online.
If you’re new to online shopping for eyeglasses, keep in mind that most prices you’ll see are for both frames and lenses (assuming you have a relatively low prescription that doesn’t require thicker lenses). But you might be charged extra for special coatings, progressive lenses (those that function as both reading and distance glasses), or other add-ons for your lenses.
Coming in hot with gorgeous lenses handcrafted in Ireland, Ambr is a company focused on creating affordable prescription (and non-prescription) blue-light glasses. Meant to protect your eyes from extensive screen time, these frames start at for non-prescription lenses and 2 for prescriptions within the ​​+4.00/-4.00 range.
Discount Glasses is pretty much everything it sounds like — affordable eyewear.
If you’re looking for cheap lenses with a pop of color, you’re going to like the selection at Glasses Shop.

10. Liingo Eyewear

Glasses Shop accepts payment from HSA and FSA accounts.
This company offers prescription glasses and sunglasses as well as blue light and progressive frames, with free shipping on orders over .
While the company doesn’t partner with any insurance providers directly, their lenses are accepted by most FSA and HSA accounts.
In addition to a great selection of affordable frames, the company also offers free shipping and returns and an extensive line of reading glasses and sunglasses.
Glasses from Ambr typically take three days to dispatch. The company offers free worldwide shipping and returns and 24/7 customer support.

Is Land a Good Investment? A Reality Check on the Profits and Risks

Buying a home may be the American dream, but buying land—empty, yet full of possibilities—holds an almost mythical appeal. It’s also cheap: On average, land will cost you a mere $3,020 per acre. Unlike avocados or iPhones, land is a finite resource, which you’d think would shore up its value. So let’s talk turkey: Is land truly a good investment?

The answer depends, for starters, on what you hope to do with it. The possibilities, of course, are close to endless: You could build a cute little cabin or your dream mansion. Or maybe you’re thinking big with your investment, like a future condo complex or shopping mall that will reel in beaucoup bucks.

But while land may seem as solid as an investment gets, it’s not something you want to venture into without careful consideration of the costs and red tape you’ll encounter. Here are some of the questions to ponder to help you decide whether you want to forge ahead.

How can the land be used?

Investors must consider not only the value of the land itself—in terms of its location and price—but also its intended purpose, says Eric Malmberg, a broker with Re/Max Advantage Plus in Minneapolis–St. Paul, who specializes in land sales. As such, your first step should be to check with the city or county to see if the land is zoned as residential (homes), commercial (shopping malls), industrial (manufacturing), or agricultural (farming). Similar to zoning laws, land can have specific designations—say, a historical site or preserve—that limit what you can build on it.

Whatever a land’s label, you should take it seriously, because if you build a house on a commercial lot, a shop on agricultural land, or some other mismatched arrangement, you’re breaking the law. And that’s rarely a winning strategy for investments (just look at where Bernie Madoff ended up).

Can land be rezoned?

What if the land you’re eyeing is not zoned the way you were hoping? Many an investor has plowed ahead anyway, intending to maximize an investment through rezoning, a phenomenon known among investors as “future-use payday.” For instance, maybe land that’s classified as agriculture currently has a restriction that will be lifted and reallocated for condos once the local population density reaches a certain level, handing a windfall to any landowner savvy enough to see it coming.

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But buyer beware, cautions Andy Prasky, who specializes in new construction and land development with Re/Max Advantage Plus in Minneapolis–St. Paul.

“Investors with rezoning dreams are usually at the mercy of the city staff,” says Prasky. “They will likely find the process to be full of costly surprises, such as land surveys, engineering reports, wetland delineations, watershed compliance, feasibility reports, and more.”

In short, waiting for rezoning to happen is high-risk, high-reward. If you aren’t an experienced real estate investor or a high roller, you should probably look to other options (read on).

Keep in mind that land comes with carrying costs: You’ll have to pay taxes on it, for instance. As such, to keep your land from being a constant drain on your finances, you’ll want to find a way for it to generate income immediately. This can be done by planting crops or trees on it, leasing it out for cattle, or offering up hunting rights.

“The key to holding raw land is to keep the taxes and expenses under control,” Prasky says, adding that agricultural land has the lowest taxes. In Minnesota where Prasky lives, for instance, farmland sells for between $8,000 and $16,000 an acre. Rent it out to a farmer, and the crop yields will generally reap a return on investment of about 3.75% per year. In short, farmland is akin to a blue chip stock: It won’t make you rich, but it does offer a slow but steady return.

What do developers think?

But if your dreams are to build something on your land, one professional you may want to call for advice is a developer. As a rookie investor, you may be valuing attributes that a homeowner would look for, like natural beauty, views, and proximity to amenities. And while these factors are important, a developer will eye additional details such as the number of buildable acres (which may not be all of it), expected expenses for site improvement, and ease of getting permits and approvals.

Also keep in mind that building will cost you, a lot. According to data from the National Association of Home Builders, the median cost of building a home is $289,415—that’s more than it costs to buy an existing median-price home, at $223,000. And that’s not where your building expenses end. You’ll also have to pay for surveys, permits, and health department approvals. What’s more, the site must be cleared, graded, and excavated—all of which can take a year or more to complete.

Bottom line: Land, as an investment, may be more trouble than it’s worth. So if you’re looking for fast and easy returns, stocks or regular real estate may be better bets. Still, if land ownership holds some appeal, just make sure to do your homework … and maybe grow a few soybeans to make ends meet.

Source: realtor.com

Actor Corbin Bernsen Selling Fab Mid-Century Home in Sherman Oaks

Don’t be “Psych”-ed out: At $1.55 million, actor Corbin Bernsen‘s Mid-Century Modern home in Sherman Oaks, CA, offers a big bang for the humble (for California, at least) price tag.

“It’s evident of what buyers want right now,” says listing agent Max Nelson of The Agency Real Estate. “A warm but sophisticated design, a great view, and decent square footage. If I had 10 of these listings, I’d have 10 escrows today.”

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Bernsen’s no stranger to modest roles with great panache: He spent eight years as divorce lawyer Arnie Becker on “L.A. Law” and played disciplined detective Henry Spencer on “Psych” for another eight seasons.

Built in 1949, the three-bedroom hillside home stacks a modern neutral vibe onto Mid-Century Modern bones. White-washed planks and a drop-beam ceiling add dimension and interest to the open-concept living space, separating the family room from the kitchen and dining areas.

That open space is “the heart of the home,” says Nelson. “It’s the center of life at this property, and people can imagine themselves having breakfast at the kitchen counter or entertaining in the living room. It’s a really powerful moment.”

With a half-acre of outdoor space, there’s enough room for a half-dozen powerful moments—just pull up a chair on the back patio and enjoy the awe-inspiring views of the San Fernando Valley below.

A neutral bath.A neutral bath.
Bathroom

(realtor.com)

Space for outdoor entertainment.Space for outdoor entertainment.
Outdoor entertainment space

(realtor.com)

An open-concept living space.An open-concept living space.
Open living space

(realtor.com)

Source: realtor.com

Best Grocery Delivery Services for 2021

Until recently, grocery delivery was a convenient novelty for anyone who preferred to outsource their weekly grocery shopping chore.

As the novel coronavirus pandemic continues to unfold, having groceries delivered has become a vital service for many people. Or maybe you’ve just become accustomed to the indulgence of having personal shoppers bring fresh groceries to your doorstep every week.

Either way, there are many grocery delivery options out there so you need to know which one is the best fit for your life and your budget.

But when you have to dig around for pricing, restrictions, delivery times and other information about multiple stores to find the best grocery delivery service in your area, you might lose your mind. You can also get sucked into the novelty of ordering leeks and Lay’s through an app without thinking about the effect on your grocery budget.

To cut through the marketing speak, we’ve broken down the details on what the best grocery delivery services offer around the country.

7 of the Best Grocery Delivery Services Compared

By now most people know the shopping process of buying groceries online and contactless delivery. But there’s more to it than filling an online cart and scheduling delivery times.

Which grocery delivery services offer unlimited free deliveries? Allows you to order alcohol? Offers fast delivery and great deals on in-store prices?

And before you sign up, read each service’s COVID-19 updates to understand any changes in protocol. Several grocery delivery services have changed their minimum order or delivery fee in the past 18 months. Two, Peapod and Amazon’s Prime Pantry, are no longer in operation.

Here’s everything you need to know about the best grocery delivery services nationwide.

a woman holding an instacart groecery bag full of produde
Photo courtesy of Instacart

1. Instacart

What: Instacart grocery delivery is available from a variety of grocery stores in your ZIP code, including drug stores, pet supply stores and, in some areas, liquor stores.

Where: Instacart delivers in all 50 states, plus Washington, D.C. Check out the full list of locations.

Product pricing: Instacart’s rundown of available stores includes notes on each retailer’s pricing policy. While most locations offer “everyday store prices,” others make it clear that the convenience of Instacart means you’ll pay higher prices for groceries than you would in stores.

Membership: Membership isn’t required to use the service, but if you’d rather skip the delivery fee every time you place an order, you can sign up for Instacart Express. For $99 per year or $9.99 per month, you’ll get free delivery for every order over $35. Express service also exempts you from peak pricing when Instacart is busy.

Delivery fee: The delivery fee is between $3.99 and $7.99 per order for nonmembers. Orders under $35 cost more. If you want your order in an hour, that adds up too. Tipping your personal shopper is permitted.

Coupon policy: Instacart doesn’t honor sale prices in stores or manufacturer’s coupons. Instead, it offers special promotions you’ll see when you log in to your account. Once you order the required amount or type of items, the discount automatically applies to your order.

Want to deliver groceries? Many grocery delivery businesses such as Shipt and Instacart are still steadily hiring.

2. Shipt

What: Shipt delivers products from a variety of grocery stores. Alcohol delivery is also available in some locations.

Where: Shipt is available throughout the U.S..

Product pricing: Shipt prices are slightly higher than if you had taken the trip yourself. “Our members can expect to pay about $5 more using Shipt than they would on a $35 order purchased in the store themselves,” the company’s website explains.

Membership: Shipt charges you $99 annually for unlimited free delivery.

Delivery fee: Members must make a minimum order of $35 to get free delivery. If your order is less than that, you have to pay a $7 delivery fee. You could also be charged $7 for alcohol purchases. Tips are permitted.

Coupon policy: Shipt offers in-app specials on items, but it doesn’t allow you to use manufacturer’s or store coupons.

The Walmart sign is shown in this photo.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

3. Walmart Grocery

What: Walmart has several  grocery ordering options. In some locations, you can have your Walmart grocery order delivered to your doorstep. In many more locations, you can place your order for a pickup window to get your groceries delivered to your car at the store. Some stores even allow you to pay for your groceries with an electronic benefit transfer card.

Where: Same-day delivery is available in most states. Walmart lets customers reserve a time and store location for pickup in all states.

Product pricing: Pickup at the store is free and products are priced the same as if you had shopped in the Walmart grocery store yourself, but there is a $35 minimum order. If you order groceries to be delivered to your home  there is a delivery fee of $7.95 or $9.95.

Delivery fee: Express Delivery is another option that costs $10 per delivery plus the $7.95 to $9.95 delivery fee. Your order usually arrives within two hours. The store recently stopped requiring an order be a minimum of $35 for Express Delivery.

With Walmart+ the groceries will likely be same day delivery if you get a good time slot when you place your order. The service costs $98 a year or $12.95 a month. There is no fee for delivery, but the order must cost at least $35.

If you are a Walmart+ member you only pay the $10 Express Delivery fee and not the additional $7.95 to $9.95 delivery fee.

Coupon policy: Walmart does not accept coupons for pickup or delivery orders. If you use the Savings Catcher app, it’ll verify that you received the lowest possible price and give you reward dollars.

4. Hungryroot

What: Hungryroot is a subscription-based grocery delivery service that curates and delivers a box of healthy food to your door each week. It covers most of your groceries for the week, minus basics like milk and bread.

Where: Delivery is available in most ZIP codes around the U.S., excluding Alaska and Hawaii.

Product pricing: You’ll build a plan based on how much food you want to receive, and prices are personalized to your plan. The minimum order amount is $59.

Membership: Membership plans start at $59 per week.

Delivery fee: No delivery fees! Membership includes free delivery.

Coupon policy: The company delivers Hungryroot brand foods, so you’ll have to find brand-specific coupons. Keep an eye out for its promos for free Ancient Grain Pancake Mix, Superfood Almond Butter and cookie dough.

5. Thrive Market

What: Thrive Market is a subscription-based grocery delivery service that delivers organic and non-GMO foods. It can cater to special diets and food allergies, including vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, nut-free, dairy-free, Kosher, keto and more. It offers prepared meals and foods, nuts, pantry staples, and frozen meat and seafood. It doesn’t offer fresh fruits and vegetables.

Where: Thrive ships to the 48 contiguous U.S. states via ground shipping.

Product pricing: Thrive promises it’ll offer products at low member-only prices through its Savings Guarantee, which offers store credit if you don’t save at least the price of your membership each year.

Membership: Membership is required and costs $59.95 per year or $9.95 a month. Students, teachers, military members or veterans, first responders and low-income families can apply for free membership through  Thrive Gives.

Delivery fee: Shipping is free on orders of groceries over $49. There is a $5.95 delivery charge if your order is below $49.

Coupon policy: Thrive users report periodically receiving coupons for discounts on their full order. You can also receive store credit for referring friends, leaving product reviews and purchasing promotional items.

A woman opens up a meal kit delivery box.
Getty Images

6. Boxed

What: Boxed lets you save money on groceries by buying everyday brands in bulk for delivery without an annual membership.

Where: Boxed is available for home or business grocery delivery in the contiguous U.S.

Product pricing: Pricing is similar to what you’d pay at a warehouse store like Costco or Sam’s Club.

Membership: Anyone can order from Boxed for free. With a Boxed Up membership for $49 per year, you’ll earn 2% cash back, free shipping on orders $19.98 and more, and exclusive discounts.

Delivery fee: Shipping is free on orders of $49 or more for non-members. Boxed Up members pay no delivery fees on orders of $19.98 or more.

Coupon policy: Boxed does not accept manufacturer coupons.

7. Google Shopping

What: Formerly Google Express, Google’s grocery delivery service is now part of Google Shopping. Shop and compare bulk and retail-sized non-perishables, including prepared foods, beverages and pantry staples from dozens of retailers. Check out through Google or at the store’s site. Each retailer handles its own delivery.

Where: Delivery options depend on which store you shop with.

Product pricing: Pricing is in keeping with online shopping prices for each retailer.

Membership: No membership is required to shop through Google, though you may have to be a member to buy from clubs like Costco.

Delivery fee: Delivery fees vary by retailer. Most retailers offer free shipping with a minimum order requirement.

Coupon policy: Policies vary by retailer.

Other Delivery Services

A sign of Safeway is shown in this photo.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Some of the best grocery delivery services are only available in select cities or regions, so be sure to check the websites of your local stores.

Here are a few we like:

  • FreshDirect: Get delivery of grocery staples, including fresh produce and meat, and wines and spirits, in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Delaware, and seasonally in the Hamptons and New Jersey.
  • Safeway: This favorite West Coast grocery store lets you order online for store pick up or delivery.
  • Amazon Fresh: Available to Amazon Prime and Amazon Prime Student members in select cities, Amazon’s grocery delivery service delivers food, including fresh fruits and vegetables.

What Is the Best Grocery Delivery Service for You?

Each of the best grocery delivery services offers unique benefits depending on your grocery needs. To select a grocery delivery service for your household, consider:

  • Is it available in your area?
  • Do you want fresh produce and meat delivered, or only nonperishables?
  • Do you prefer to buy from local stores or national chains?
  • Do you like to shop around at different stores, or do you have a go-to grocery store?
  • Do you follow a special diet?
  • Does a service cover all your grocery needs, or only select items?
  • Do you prefer meal kits, curated orders or hand-picked groceries?

If one of the best grocery delivery services  doesn’t cover all your needs, you can always use more than one. Just keep an eye on costs — multiple memberships could add up quickly and negate any savings you find.

Lisa Rowan is a former senior writer and producer at The Penny Hoarder. Katherine Snow Smith is also a former senior writer based in St. Petersburg, Fl. 

Source: thepennyhoarder.com