Money Talks: Buying Generics

Everybody thinks they do a good job when it comes to shopping. After all, nobody deliberately spends more than they have to.

Or do they? The shelves of almost any grocery store are full of name brand products that are virtually the same as generics. Which means paying for the name is wasting money.

Example? Over the counter drugs like aspirin. Read the labels: more often than not, generics aren't similar, they're identical. And the name brand can cost 50% more.

Same with prescription drugs. Ask your doctor - if a generic is identical, why pay for a name?

Here in the baking section, examples abound. Flour, Salt, Sugar. How about spices? Look at this! Both oregano: same plant. $5/oz for this. $1/ounce for the generic.

Same thing with cleaning products. Go ahead - try to convince me that this cleaner with bleach for $2.39 isn't as good as this cleaner with bleach for $3.29. And when you're done convincing me of that, convince me that bleach is different. Or even laundry detergent.

Even fresh fruit and vegetables often come with expensive names attached. Hey...this isn't a secret formula. It's a banana.

And here's a classic: water. You're already paying for something that's nearly free and as close as the nearest sink. Do you really want to pay even more with a name brand? It's water.

Look at the dairy case: butter, milk. There's not too many ways to make these things. How can a name brand be better?

Bottom line? If name brand makes a difference, great. But if the generic's identical, even if you've got money to burn, don't waste that money - donate it charity. If you want more ideas to save, I've got em right here at I'm Stacy Johnson.