The US annual inflation rate reached 8.5% in March 2022 – the highest it has been in 40 years! This means nearly everything you regularly purchase is more expensive than it was a year ago. The increase in costs are making it harder for people to pay for necessities such as food, clothes, and housing. If you’re looking for strategies that will help you beat inflation in 2022, you have come to the right place!
Next, I am going to answer the following questions:
- What is inflation?
- Why are inflation rates so high right now?
- When will inflation rates go down?
- What can I do to beat inflation?
- Where can I find assistance with necessities such as food and clothes?
- Where can I find additional resources?
What is inflation?
Inflation is the rate of increase in prices over a given period of time. The federal government tracks this information with its Consumer Price Index (CPI), which regularly looks at the cost of food, housing, energy, health care, and several other categories.
Why are inflation rates so high right now?
Many factors contributed to inflation. The leading one is COVID-19 and its effects, such as the change in supply and demand. At the height of the COVID pandemic in 2020, many companies reduced hours, and people lost their jobs. This resulted in consumers being more careful with their money and only purchasing necessities.
Two years later, the job market has improved, and people have more money in their pockets and more money to spend. As the demand for products increased, supply decreased, resulting in companies raising prices. COVID also created supply chain issues which further exacerbated the need for companies to increase their prices.
When will inflation rates go down?
Unfortunately, there is no straightforward answer, but many economists do not look hopeful. According to a report by CNBC, consumers can expect that this year will be the worst for inflation, with prices not estimated to go down until 2023.
What can I do to beat inflation?
Below are three tips to help you beat inflation:
- Tip #1: Analyze your expenses
It helps to look at your budget, income, and expenses. Try reviewing your weekly and monthly expenses and see if there is anything you can cut out. Do you have a monthly gym membership but never use it? Have you been eating out every day instead of packing lunch for work? What about purchasing lower cost alternatives in the grocery store? Maybe you can delete shopping apps on your phone that tempt you to make unnecessary purchases?
Cutting out even the smallest expenses can add up over time.
- Tip #2: Start a savings or emergency fund
We know it is hard to save. But it is better to be prepared in case prices continue to increase or if you are faced with an unforeseen circumstance such as a job loss, health issue, or home/car repair. Even if you can only afford to set aside a small amount each month, your savings will add up over time.
- Tip #3: Take advantage of the technology and coupons
Today, there are so many apps and websites on your cell phone that help you find deals. A few great examples are Groupon, Retail Me Not and Krazy Coupon Lady. However, if you are not too tech-savvy, you can always resort to checking out your local newspaper for coupons. These coupons are great for finding deals, and reducing costs in the grocery store.
Where can I find assistance with necessities such as food and clothes?
We have articles that specifically explain the resources and organizations that will help you find these necessities.
- For food, please read Organizations, Strategies, and Assistance Programs That Will Help You Take Care of Your Pocket When You Need Food.
- For clothes, please read Find Clothes in Good Condition and At No Charge.
We also have many more articles that focus on providing information and resources to our community. If you are interested in seeing our complete list of articles, please click here.
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