6 Ways A Single Mom
On One Income
The world will tell you, you can’t do it, but I will tell you, you can! Without needing state aid, without being so poor you’re forced back to work, and without having to rob your local bank…… (Inserts wink face) Yeah, don’t do that! ***UPDATE 9/11/2017*** I’m a single mom now who is going through a heartbreaking divorce and am still home with my babies. Discover my secrets so that you too, can stay home with your children.
It is feasible to stay at home with the kids and live on one income. However, you have to be enthusiastic to swap your current life and make some changes, well a lot of changes, and be willing to sacrifice some things you love.
For me, giving up my daily Starbucks and my twice a month mani is so worth watching my littles grow and discover the world. Also, you may find that the cost of childcare really isn’t worth the 40 hours of hard work to have most of your paycheck sucked up in daycare expenses.
With that being said, here is how you can start thinking about staying home:
How Much Are You Really Earning
Sit down and figure out what you earn after childcare expenses. If you make a weekly $500.00 check, and $300.00 is withdrawn for childcare provision, can you really survive without that measly $200.00? Yes, I know $200.00 is a decent chunk of change, but you can find ways to make up that change with some side hustling. Sell things, have two or more kiddos at your home, start clipping coupons and saving on your grocery bill. If your heart is in it, you will figure out a way to stay home and make up the missing money from your current pay now.
There are many online jobs that are legitimate and some are actually fun. My favorite is User Testing. They pay up to $10.00 or more for you to test out a website. Super easy, I promise, it’s easier than it sounds.
Create A Budget
This is a must for a one income family. You have to hold each other accountable in your spending as a family. Stick to a food budget, a savings budget, a shopping budget, an eating out budget and try not to fall away from the guidelines that help you to stay home or you will find yourself needing to go back to work. Sit down and figure out how much you make, and how much your monthly bills add up to.
We find that if our bills are 1000 for the month we will set aside $250 from each check. It is so much easier paying bills with money set aside, then trying to come up with a $500.00 house payment on one check. Also, placing bills on auto-pay will help keep you accountable in paying bills on time as opposed to saying, “I’ll pay that bill next pay period.” Don’t get into that horrible mind set. Stay on time with your bills, it’s so stressful when you get behind.
Stop Eating Out
Your food expense is usually your biggest expense. For us, with sports, it became so effortless to go out to eat instead of cooking late, after a game. But, the money spent on fast food was outlandish. A family of five for $28.00 or more a wack, twice a week, could have been a good three to four days worth of groceries. So, go to the store and buy your weeks worth and stay accountable to what you have at home for supper. My secret to spending less on food is creating a large crock pot meal that will feed us twice that week and quick to warm up before a game. This way we were avoiding Mcdonalds, and eating a more nutritious meal. Click here AND DISCOVER MY SECRETS how to not overspend on groceries.
Vacations and Extra Curricular Activities
As you know it, they will all come to an end. At least, the big trips to Disney and vacationing on the coast for the week. But rest assured, you can still have these kinds of vaca’s, you just need to save for them. You cannot go every winter to Disney, you now have to skip a few years. Try doing things together as a family that cost less. Instead of our yearly Disney World, we go to our favorite camping spot. Just as much fun and the kids love it. You can still have fun but without all the expense.
The kids’ are going to grow up and look back at all of their childhood memories, and not even consider how much and how far their parents went for vacation. Also, Disney offers a payment plan and many travel agencies do, where you can decide what you can afford and pay each month.
Get Rid Of Unnecessary Payments
Duh, right! Well, it’s hard to give up stuff, especially nice stuff. But, with a little sacrifice, you can be home with your kids, and the extra money you save from getting rid of the unnecessary payments can help pay off debt. Here are some examples, we had a brand new truck, brand new four wheeler, and my car I brought into our marriage. We got rid of my husbands truck and put a trade in towards a vehicle that was cheaper, used and could seat all of us. Sold the four wheeler and my SUV and put earnings towards my husbands truck, which is cheaper, used, and more affordable. For some, part of staying home mean’s fewer toys, but we still know how to have fun.
Next, we got rid of a $200.00 cable bill and now we just have a $49.00 tv bill and Netflix. I could even say we could go lower by getting rid of cable and just have Netflix, but small steps, small steps. (Take note, there is that $200.00 savings we mentioned above.) Down size and live within your means. We really are so much happier.
Pay Off Debt
Now that your home, you’ve made these changes, feeling good, home with your babies, before you start spending and saving, pay off your debt first. Focus on small trips and fun day activities and take your saving’s and get out of debt. This will make life so much easier when the money earned goes to necessities and family as opposed to that debt sucking hole.
Well, these are some of my tips on how to be a stay at home on one income. There are many things we have to implement to make money last and go far. But these are the main tips that keep us afloat.
I started a blog which is why you’re here and it has also helped with our one income family. If you’re interested in your own blog, by the way, so fun and quite easy, then check out my article here, How To Start a Blog In Less Than 15 Minutes!
**UPDATE** My blog has been my saving grace for income as a soon to be divorced mother of four. I earned a full-time income in August and it really feels great to still maintain my place in the home with my children.
Tell me how your family makes it work on one income? Would love to hear your suggestions. I also support both parents working and by no means against the working mom or dad. This is just our families tips on how we survive on one income.