Balancing the household budget while making sure everyone has what they need to live a vibrant, healthy life can be hard. That’s especially true as prices rise. If you’re a mom saving money, we’ve got some tips to help you with that task.
1. Look for Deals
Don’t swipe your card or hit the checkout before you spend a little time looking for deals. Clipping and stacking coupons can help you cut your grocery budget by a hefty percentage, but moms can use deals to save money on things they might purchase anyway. Here are just a few ways deals can help you save money:
- Download money-saving grocery apps. Apps such as Ibotta let you scan your receipts and stack cash-back rewards. It does take a bit of planning to save big with these apps, but it can be worth it for moms looking to save money.
- Check with Groupon or other deals sites. Before you splurge on admission to the local children’s museum or aquarium or dinner at the sandwich shop, check Groupon and similar sites. You might find a deal for a substantial amount off.
- Use coupon codes. Always check for coupon codes before you order online. When shopping on Amazon, look for a coupon code in the listing. You may need to check a box before you add the item to your cart to make sure you get the savings.
2. Take Another Look at Your Grocery List
Make smart money decisions when buying groceries. Purchase in-season produce whenever possible because it’s less expensive than out-of-season options. Check sales ads and price match. If you can save enough, you may want to spend the time shopping at multiple stores.
When possible, buy generic to avoid paying for big-brand advertising, and consider whether bulk buys save you enough money to make them worth it. Just make sure you’ll use what you purchase before it expires, because wasted food is a waste of money.
3. Stretch What You Have
Look for ways to cut down on how much you have to purchase. One of the best ways to stretch your resources is to integrate reusable items into your home. For example, cloth rags you can wash and use for years save you money compared to disposable paper towels you have to buy repeatedly. The same is true for dishes you can wash versus paper or plastic.
You can also invest in products that are made to last longer, such as CFL bulbs. Consider how you can save on utilities like electricity and water, such as by hanging your clothing up to dry instead of using a dryer.
4. Get Resourceful
Consider all the resources available to you and how you can best use them as a mom saving money. Libraries are a perfect example of resources many people don’t use to their fullest. Here are just a few things you may be able to do at your local library to save money as a mom:
- Check out books. Books cost $10+ new, and even used book purchases can add up. Meet your family’s reading needs for free with a library card.
- Check out movies and media. Many libraries let you check out DVDs, BluRays, CDs and audiobooks. Family movie night just got a lot cheaper.
- Borrow equipment and special items. Check with your local libraries to see if there’s a “not books” collection. Many libraries let you borrow laptops, hotspots, tablets, projectors and other technology equipment. Some even have collections of items you might only need once in a while, such as specialty cake pans.
- Attend events for education and entertainment. Most library systems host numerous events throughout the year. Check with yours to see what free, fun stuff you and your family can enjoy.
Other ways you can be resourceful include walking instead of driving whenever possible and seeking out apps and programs that let you save money, such as prescription drug apps.
5. Go Through Your Bills
Collect information about your spending and bills for a month or two. Then, go over that data with a critical eye. Look for ways you can cut costs, such as unnecessary options on a cell phone bill or subscriptions you don’t really need.
6. Review Your Finances
One of the best ways to save money is to ditch your debt. Look for ways you can pay down debt or pay off loans faster. That will free up disposable income that can be used to save for the future.
You might also look at the terms on your credit card and loan debt. If your credit has improved since you applied for that debt, you might be able to refinance or negotiate a lower interest rate. That could save you money on every payment.
7. Work With Your Community
Moms saving money don’t have to do the work alone. Get to know people in your area so you can swap babysitting and other services with people you like and trust. Join community social media pages that involve swapping toys, home goods and other items. Learn when churches have yard sales or when large annual consignment sales happen so you can find clothing and other items for your family at deep discounts.
8. Teach Your Children Financial Responsibility
When your children know about money and understand how to use it responsibly, the entire family can save together. Teach your kids about money and finances, and create options that allow them to practice what they learn. That might include giving them an allowance or getting them prepaid debit cards.
9. Gain Money in Other Ways
Sometimes, saving money as a mom isn’t quite enough. When that appears to be the case for your family, consider ways you can increase your income.
Get a part-time job or join the gig economy. You might deliver groceries or food or complete work online as a virtual assistant. You can also have yard sales, resell items your family no longer needs or browse thrift stores for special items you can buy and sell online for more.
10. Focus on Time With Your Family Instead of Expensive Gifts
Gift-giving can be expensive. When possible, look for ways to cut down on the cost of gifts and invest instead in quality time with your family. Give experience gifts, such as a day at the museum, or create homemade gifts together to give to others.
Start Saving Money Today
Putting just one of these tips into action can help you start saving money today. Pick one and implement it in your daily life before you move on to another. In just a few months, you’ll be a mom saving money without even thinking about it.
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