Top Tips for Making Ends Meet when you have a Family
If you have children, then you will know how much extra things cost and how it can be much more difficult to manage your money. You suddenly have extra expenses but you may also have the additional cost of childcare or one parent no longer working so many hours. This means that you have a double hit of financial problems with less income and more money to spend. However, many people manage to cope financially and there are lots of things that you can do to help.
Cut down on luxuries
Cutting down on the things that you normally buy can be a great way to spend less money. Although this may be difficult, it can make a big difference and it does have to be for long. Once the children are at school you will have more time to work and earn more money so that you can buy these sorts of things again. It can be particularly hard to do this when you have children though as the luxuries that you buy tend to be for them rather than yourself. However, they will not think you love them any less if you do not buy them so much, as long as you show your love in other ways. Playing with them, helping them with their homework, going out for picnics and walks with them and giving them your undivided attention will show them that you want to be with them and love them without you having to spend lots of money on them. If they are used to getting lots of things, then they may need some time to adjust but if you explain it all carefully then that should help. Older children should be able to understand the concept of debt, savings and budgeting so they should be able to understand why you are cutting back. Young children may not notice you cutting back so much anyway.
It can be difficult to take the time to compare prices when shopping with children. If they are unhappy in the shop for any reason, then it is tempting to quickly put things in the trolley and get out as quickly as possible. So even if you shop at a budget supermarket you could still end up paying more than necessary. You can do some research at home online first, if it is easier as there is a comparison website for supermarkets. You could also compare prices of other things that you buy such as insurance and utilities and you could save a lot of money with those as well.
It is so important that you keep track of what money you have and what you are spending. You should be able to do this by looking at your bank balance regularly as well as checking what you have been spending on your credit card. It is a good idea to look at these at least once a week as if you know that you are struggling financially it will make you think harder before you buy things. If you can wait, then you may decide to wait until you next get paid before buying certain things so that you can make sure that you will have enough money to afford it. It is wise to avoid going overdrawn if you can as that will save you a lot of money in fees and also to pay off other debts as soon as you can so that you save money on the charges for those as well.
Do some work from home
If you get some time then you might be able to earn some money from home. This is not always that easy but there are plenty of ways that you can earn money online. Small things such as surveys or watching videos can earn small amounts of money or you could pick up freelance work to earn more significant amounts. You will know how much free time you have and whether you need that time to relax or if you would be happy fitting some work into that time. Doing work at home means that you can keep an eye on the children while they play or work while they are sleeping and if you find something that is flexible you do not have to do it at a certain time each day.
A lot of parents make money by selling things. Start by selling maternity wear when you no longer need it (although keep it if you are planning on having more children) and then sell the childrens clothing and toys as they grow out of them. Again, if you are planning on having more, then you will need to keep hold of them. You may have things that you own that you can sell as well, perhaps things that you no longer need now that you have children or just items that you no longer use anymore or do not like. It can be easy to sell things online and you will be able to get some money which will all help towards paying out extra for the children.
these are just a few ideas that could help you to balance the books better. It is good to think about your own lifestyle ad what will work best for you. Obviously it depends on the age of your children, whether you have a job, what sorts of things you are spending your money on and things like this. Some of the ideas, such as comparing prices, will work for everyone though and it just takes a little time. Once you get into the habit of doing it, it is easy and automatic and you could end up saving a little bit of money each time you buy something. You may not think that it is worth it, but those small amounts of money will soon add up to make a significant chunk.