We’re living in a family of five (and hope to expand soon) and in this day, that’s considered a large family when it comes to financial burden.
For the most part of our parenthood (other than the past year) we have lived on a single income. Myself being the sole care provider for my kids, we relied on the finances from my husband’s job. We purchased our modest home with a realistic budget in mind so that we could afford to comfortably have me at home with the kids — which was important to us.
Of course, it’s not always easy to live on a single income — especially with three kids! We had a budget and found what worked for us — we were able to come up with a few simple ways to help save money — and they may just work well for you too!
Click through to read 8 simple moves that can help you save money:
1) Go to the Library More: If you look for cheap/free things to do with your kids, you will save yourself a good chunk of change. We’re a family that loves to read and my husband and I are known for book-buying. A little is okay, but when the need-to-read hits, head to the library with the kids and pick out a few new books, magazines and they even have movies to ‘rent’ for free!
2) Cook at Home More: We all lead crazy busy lives and sometimes that takes us out of the house for meal time. Even if you make an effort to reduce the amount you eat outside the house by 1-2 times a month, you will notice a good savings.
3) Make Your Own Coffee: I know it’s hard for us to forgo the caffeine in the morning and with the chaos of trying to get the kids to school on time, it’s easier to pick it up on the way. It’s not easier for your savings though! If you make your own coffee at home you will save a bunch through the week. They have coffee makers that take only a press of a button for a hot cup, or find one that will turn on and brew to an alarm.
4) Buy Generic Brands: They are not usually that different in make, but quite different in price. Instead of the name-brand paper towels, switch to the store brand and you will reap the savings!
5) Buy Fruit/Vegetables: in Season: Pay attention to the prices of fresh fruit and vegetables throughout the year. Some will be higher in prices when they’re out of season. Opt for something different during that price hike or try a frozen brand instead.
6) Book Vacations Early: If you’re planning a vacation as a family, often times the sooner you book, the cheaper the price. There are websites available that can help plan the whole trip and often there is a discount if you’re booking a month (or more) in advance.
7) Buy Used/Hand-me-down: If you have many kids, there is no reason they should feel slighted if they’re in hand-me-downs. If you take the extra time to take care of the clothes so they’re wearable for your next child, you’re saving a bunch of change! There are a lot of swap groups around too where you can trade something you don’t need for something you do — look for moms in your area!
8) Shop Around: If your on the hunt for a new big-ticket item (like a tv, car, or mattress), be sure to shop around and look for a deal. There are many stores that have price-match guarantees and will even beat the price by a certain percent. It will pay in the long-run to do a bit of looking around first!
Photo credit: modified from iStockPhoto
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