UNITED STATES—I think this is a discussion we must have America because the amount of money we are losing because we refuse to check our receipts at the grocery store is baffling. I’m a big proponent of keeping receipts because I log my purchase. I want to know what I’m spending throughout the year and where I’m saving money and where I might be spending more than what I should be doing people.

In the past, I would never check my grocery receipt, because I trusted the retailers where I was spending my money for groceries and food would never cheat me, but damn was I wrong. If you only knew how much money you are losing or throwing away, you would vomit inside your mouth. Recently, I got overcharged at one retailer $15 on my grocery bill because items that were on sale did not properly ring up upon checkout. I had to push for the establishment to refund me the difference because the mistake was on their end. C’mon, you make a mistake you have to fix it.

The key thing is I caught the mistake before I left the store. Why? Most people refuse to drive back to the grocery store after they’ve gotten home. It is just too much of a hassle and it resulted in you letting a retailer take money out of your pocket that you might desperately need. That is money that can be used to go in the gas tank, to purchase household essentials, to pay a bill or to place into your savings account. Here’s the scary thing, the retailer expects you not to review your grocery bill because how many of us actually do it? Last week, I was charged 3 times for an item I only purchased once. In the same week, two items that I specifically purchased because they were on sale did not ring up properly.

Had I not checked my receipt I easily would have thrown $30 in the trash. Thirty dollars people! With inflation as bad as it is, the price of eggs skyrocketing to a point that I went weeks without purchasing eggs at such a high rate, that extra money purchased two dozen of eggs for me. You work extremely hard for every single penny that you earn, so don’t let the retailers take advantage of you because you’re too busy to take 60 to 120 seconds to review your receipt to ensure your total actually matches what you expect to spend.

I like to think I’m pretty good at keeping track of the money that I’m spending, but when you head to the grocery store you’re always inclined to purchase something that is not on your list. Why? It looks good, you’re hungry, it’s on sale, the kids want it, you plan to use it in a dish, the list goes on and on people. Hell, I’m actually starting to think it might not be a bad idea to have a calculator in my possession when I am heading to the grocery store to keep track of each item I purchase to ensure everything totals accurately at the register. There is one problem with that, considering the cost of the fruit and produce that you purchase where you pay per pound.

This is not impossible to do, it just means you have to weigh your produce and ensure you’re properly doing your math so everything adds up as you expect. You might always be off a few cents here and there. You might not think checking your grocery receipt is important and if you like throwing money away and being overcharged, than more power to you. However, for those where every single penny counts it matters and if you haven’t been checking that grocery bill after you pay rather with cash, credit or debit, you might want to start doing so.