Practical Ways to Save Money as a Single Parent
Saving money isn’t rocket science; it only needs some adjustments to your current spending habits. As a single parent, you need to create and stick to a budget, live within your means, save enough for unexpected spending and teach your children the necessity of proper money management. This should help you free up some money, for development, as well as for the rainy days.
Here are some practical ways to save money as a single parent:
Buy in bulk
You get to save lots of money purchasing in bulk. So, instead of buying one piece at a time, purpose to buy in large quantities, especially when you’re buying dry beans, nuts, grains, flours, seeds, dry pasta, herbs, spices, granola, cereals, powder, coffee bean and dried fruits. A recent study from Portland University revealed that organic bulk foods were 89% cheaper than packaged organic foods. Do your math to see how much you get to save here.
Today, you can get just about everything online, whether it’s groceries, clothes, books, electronics, cars, air conditioning, you name it. There are numerous advantages to buying online – convenience, variety, 24-hour shopping – but one of them stands out, and that’s affordability. Online stores do not incur overhead costs, like the physical stores. So often, they’ll pass down the savings to you. Besides, some even offer free delivery services; it can’t get better than this.
Make your meals
You can save a lot of money just by preparing homemade meals, instead of eating out. Did you know that an average worker spends about $2,000 per years on lunch alone? This is according to the January 2012 Workonomix Survey.
An excellent way to avoid spending lots of money on food during the day is to pack and carry your lunch (you can also pack some food for your kid’s); add some soft drinks and snacks, or bottles of water to cut out on the need to spend on food or water.
Plan before shopping
Have you ever gone to a clothing store for a pair of jeans and come home with a t-shirt and a sweater? Have you ever felt like purchasing something because it’s cheap? If so, you understand how this one goes. It is easy to spend money on things you do not need if you don’t have a plan.
If you can manage to control impulse spending, then, you are on the right track to saving your hard earned money. Set aside some time to plan on what you’re going to buy; this will help you avoid the impulse buying, which is one of the many culprits that take away your money. Resist any temptation to buy anything that’s not on the list – a good idea would be to carry the exact cash that you need for the specified items
Pay bills on time
Paying your bills on time is a great way to save money; however, it might seem counterintuitive since you are in a one-income household, with a baby or two. But bills are bills, and they have to be paid. You cannot ignore them just because you don’t have the money. A good approach should be to talk to your bank so that these bills are automatically deducted. This will help you avoid the late fees and the stamp costs.
The internet has made this very easy. You can now compare the pricing of different products in a variety of stores from the comfort of your living room. Traditionally, you had to walk from one store to the next, which was tiring.
Buy life insurance
Unfortunately, emergencies happen when you least expect them to, and when they do, they can leave you financially drained. Knowing this, the best thing that you can do to protect your family is buying life insurance.
Raising children and managing a home on one-income can be difficult. As a single parent, you need to mindful of where your money goes; you also need to teach your children good saving and spending habits. With good planning and spending, you should be able to save enough for your other projects, and even for your retirement.