Are you a stay at home mom stressed about the budget?
Do you ever feel guilty about not bringing in income?
Do you wish that you could contribute to the family?
This article is not about how to make side money. It is also not about how much you are worth as a stay at home mom. How do you put a value on your time with y our children?
This is about real practical ways, you can help cut spending. Let’s face it, when it comes to a budget there are really two pieces. Income which we don’t control and expenses.
Expenses are what, we as stay at home moms, have complete control over. We typically do all the shopping (i.e. all the spending).
So let’s talk about tricks to save in the spending!
Saving money with Facebook yard sale groups
These groups are great for kid crap. You need a new walker, bouncer, clothes, shoes, or Legos?
You get the point. Facebook yard sale groups have it all. If you can’t find it, ask the group if anyone has it.
I scored two beautiful black rockers that were originally, $100 a pop for $50 total. All I did was ask, and some woman had them in her basement. Always check Facebook before you buy anything new.
Dollar store hacks can save you money
If you want to get organized, you can go to Walmart or Target and find very expensive crates, stands and boxes. Or you can do a search on Pinterest for dollar store hacks.
You would be amazed at how you can organize your whole home for pennies, or dollars!
Having a holiday party? Go to the dollar store for your table and decorations.
Finally, not sure about you, but if you are part of any playgroups that give out gifts of every holiday, use the dollar store for these! I almost went broke my first year keeping up with birthdays, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, and Thanksgiving.
There are a lot of holidays to exchange a lot of crap for! Save yourself!
Consignment sales will save you tons of money
Consignment sales are great for new babies and most kids up to two. For boys, usually 18 months.
Do not spend money on new toys and new clothes that are only used for a few months. It’s not worth it!
If you want to use coupons, but can’t sit around with scissors on a Sunday (or if you’re like me and can’t remember to buy a newspaper) — use Ebates.
Amazon Prime and Amazon subscriptions
Amazon is the greatest company to us folks that live in the country! One, they have everything and two, you can save a fortune on shipping if you sign up for Prime.
Likewise, Amazon subscriptions keep me from running out of items to completely forgetting to buy or replace items. Like the refrigerator water filter.
I will note, that recently, I have noticed some sellers on Amazon are doing a mark up on their items that ship free with Prime. Before you buy, always check the home site and compare their price with shipping to Amazon’s.
Think you have everything figured out as a parent? Think again!
Eating at home to save money
This is one we all know and just don’t do. If you don’t want to go broke, you can make almost any budget stretch if you choose to cook at home! Rice and beans baby!
For us, I love using Home Chef. It is a subscription box of food that shows up weekly. It helps me eat at home, eat good food and makes me a better planner or our other meals. Don’t be scared to be creative!
Shopping at Aldi’s
If you are on a tight budget, getting to the holidays or paying down debt. Aldi’s has always been our go to place to grocery shop! Diapers, baby food, produce and standard basic groceries are usually almost 50% off. Plus it is all organic now. If you don’t have an Aldi’s, Walmart is a good back up. I usually can save 30% by shopping there. Do not shop at target on a budge. Just no.
Trading date night with neighbors
Need a date night? Don’t want to pay for a sitter, ask your mom friends. Often we all feel the same way, more so, our kids love playing together. Trade a night a month or every other month. Your kids will come home exhausted and you refreshed!
Trading toys in playgroups/baby clothes
When I got pregnant with my daughter, my neighbor had a two year old little girl. She was able to give me bins of clothes that worked perfectly and saved me thousands of dollars. Tip: when you’re pregnant, meet other pregnant mammas.
You’re not paying for daycare
As stay at home moms, we constantly feel guilty about spending money we didn’t ‘earn’. But consider for a moment, how much daycare costs in your area and how much you have to make in order for you going to work to make sense.
I live in a relatively cheap area. Day care for two kids easily costs the salary of someone making $40-45k a year.
How is this possible, you wonder? Well think about it, day care is paid with after tax money.
So, that $40k a year job is really only bringing home 65-70% of that. That’s $26-28k a year!
That means bi weekly, you are only bringing home $1,076. With day care costing $800+ per week. Per Week. By going to work, you are losing money!
Then add in commuting costs, lunches, clothes, and stress. In my cheap area, you need to bring in about $65K a year to make going to work with it, that’s per one person.
For many families, you have two people going to work to bring home $80k. Between taxes, bills and daycare, they are never getting ahead.
If you find yourself in this position, start looking at ways for one person to bring in more money and keep one person home.