Did inflation drop you out of the middle class? Expert money saver offers tips.

Oct 16, 2023, 7:00 PM

middle class...

File - Heinz tomato ketchup is displayed in a Target store in Upper Saint Clair, Pa., on Friday, July 7, 2023. On Thursday, the Labor Department releases the producer price index for August, an indicator of inflation at the wholesale level. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

SALT LAKE CITY — You are in the middle class in Utah if you are a family of four earning at least $68,000. 

Debbie Dujanovic and Taylor Morgan, who hosts KSL@Night, discuss the newest requirements to be considered “middle class” in Utah.

To learn more about saving money, perhaps to re-enter the middle class, they speak with KSL NewsRadio’s Heather Kelly, host of the podcast “Money Making Sense.” 

Needs are few but wants are many

Kelly said the first move in saving money is controlling the urge: “I have to have it now.”

“Advertisers, companies, they are the king of echoing ‘If you don’t buy it now, this deal is going away’ and we have to stop that –,” Kelly said.

“Flash-deal mentality, which I saw last week when Amazon did another Prime Day,” Debbie said.

Kelly said if the deal does not include food, security or safety for the family, you don’t need it.

When you spend, think of your long-term goals, she advised. Is your priority saving for retirement or saving for your child’s college fund or something else?

Don’t use your credit card, Kelly recommended, if the purchase is not for one of the needs: food, security or safety.

Let’s go shopping

Before shopping, she said, make a list. Only buy the items on the list.

“If you’re looking to save money in the grocery store, even with your list, look up high and down low because the most expensive items are right at our eye level,” Kelly said.

She also suggested buying generic food items, which are typically set higher and lower on grocery store shelves, rather than brand-name products.

There’s a very common exception to this rule: More expensive children’s cereals tend to be a little lower down, at eye level with smaller shoppers. Some are even designed so that the cartoon characters on the boxes are looking directly at the kids, according to

The Daily Dinner recommends saving money while grocery shopping by purchasing the generic or store brand for items such as sugar and flour.

“Sugar is sugar and flour is flour. The only difference between the store brand and the major brands is price and packaging.”

Generic vs Name Brand Foods – Is there really a difference?

Subscriptions are costing me!

“I would get rid of Amazon because you can actually get free shipping through Amazon even if you don’t have a membership,” Kelly said.

Order with free shipping by Amazon

She said if you are using your subscriptions regularly and like them, keep them, if not, cancel them.

“But how are any of my in-laws going to access Disney Plus and Max and everything else if I cancel mine,” Taylor said.

“If they can afford it, then they need to do it themselves,” Kelly said.

Related: How to Save Money Grocery Shopping: 4 Easy Tips For the Next Time You Go Shopping


Listen to Dave & Dujanovic weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play. 

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Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

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Did inflation drop you out of the middle class? Expert money saver offers tips.