Being a mom is one of the most rewarding experiences you can have, but even though you can’t put a price tag on the love you will get from your family, it does become pretty expensive. Trying to manage your finances while keeping the husband, kids, pets, and home happy can be a tough job, but there are certain things you can do to make it much easier. Here are 10 super-smart money-saving tips that every mom should know.
Swap Babysitting Shifts With Other Parents
If you ever want to have a night to yourself or with your significant other, you’ll have to pay a babysitter to watch the kids. As prices have risen over the last decade, it becomes very expensive very quickly to keep a baby sitter on for even a few hours. If you happen to know some other moms with kids around the same age as your own, do a trade-off. Have another mom watch your kids when you go out, and then take a turn for her. It’s free and it will give you both some much-needed time off.
Get a Grocery Delivery
You don’t realize how many frivolous items get thrown into your cart when you’re at the grocery store both by your kids and yourself. Even if you write a list, it’s pretty tough to stick to it completely when there are so many tempting items that you “forgot to add to it”. That grocery bill ends up much higher than you intended because of items you didn’t actually need. Instead, try a curbside delivery for your groceries. You will receive and pay for only what you ordered straight from your list. No surprises.
Hand-Me-Downs Are Priceless
Do you have any mom friends with kids a little older than yours? If so, you should try and get their kids hand-me-downs for your own little ones. Young children grow so quickly that they only fit in their clothes for a few months to a year. You’ll find yourself spending so much on outfits just for them to outgrow the pants a few months later. Instead, so if anyone in your circle has clothing to give away, and then you can do the same when your kids outgrow them too!
Buy in Bulk When You Can
Of course, not everything can be bought in bulk (like fresh meats, produce, cheeses, etc.), but when it comes to snacks, freezer items, and paper products, bulk is the way to go. Not only will it come out much cheaper, in the long run, to buy enough paper towels to last you a couple of months, but it will also save you more frequent trips to the grocery store when these necessities quickly run out.
Nature Is The Best (And Cheapest) Playground
You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on toys and games for your kids to stay entertained. In fact, the world can be their playground…literally! Let your kids play outside as much as possible and let mother nature do the playing. Instead of spending hundreds on the newest Lego set of Barbie Dream House, a cheap pack of chalk or container of bubbles can make for hours of fun in the sun, while hardly making a dent in your wallet.
Check Out Consignment Shops For Kids Toys
When kids get older and outgrow their toys, many people donate them to second-hand stores to be sold at very low prices to other moms. Especially when your little ones are very little, they will outgrow toys quickly and will not cause them much damage. Check out a few thrift shops and see what toys are on the shelves, you’d be surprised at what you can find for very little money.
Put A Small Amount Of Money Aside Often
Lots of moms will have a savings fund when they need some cash for unexpected repairs or other unforeseen emergencies. But many of them don’t have any money put aside for something fun! Whenever you find yourself with a little extra cash, put a bit of it away (even if it’s only a few dollars of your change) and save it for an impromptu trip to an amusement park or a beach day. It’s nice to have an annual family vacation, but being able to squeeze in some smaller fun days along the way will be a great experience for the whole family.
Use Everything In Your Fridge Before Buying More
When you buy specific ingredients for a dish you are planning, you always end up with some leftover raw ingredients. Don’t let them (and the money you spent on them) go to waste! Instead, try and use them in another recipe. If you need ideas, get yourself on Youtube and search for recipes using X ingredients. You’ll discover dishes you’ve never heard of before that you can add to your repertoire, and you won’t feel bad about throwing the wasted food away when it eventually goes bad.
Keep Up With Home And Car Maintenance
This might not seem related, but keeping up with routine maintenance on your home, car, and other assets is crucial in saving money. Sure, you will end up spending a bit more on upkeep like switching out light bulbs, changing your oil, or cleaning out your AC every few months, but it will save you loads of money on repairs and replacements when appliances you didn’t maintain end up breaking down completely.
It doesn’t cost any money if you don’t leave your home, but that doesn’t mean the kids have to be bored. Have a movie night from home (you can spend a bit on popcorn and snacks, of course) instead of going to the theater. Have a family game night. Host a “fashion show” for your kids and their friends. Even a sleepover (if you’re so inclined and the kids are old enough). These things require more attention for you, but cost next to nothing. Besides, quality time is important!