Top 8 Things To Stop Spending Money On
(To Survive On One Income)
I’ve recently been thrown into a situation where living on one income was not my choice, but I must go where the wind takes me, right? Oh, money, money, money! It will be the death of me I feel some days. I have three kids, and one on the way and It is a MUST to master my budget. I realized really quick the things I needed to stop spending money on to survive on one income.
This post isn’t about sucking it up buttercup, stop enjoying life. But it is an eye-opener to what we mindlessly spend money on each month. When money wasn’t so tight, I had no idea the things that were racking up every month, not to mention the regular bills. To survive on one income cuts have to be made!
Top 8 Things You Need To Stop Spending Money On
(To Survive On One Income)
I know, my kids just about flipped their lids when I said no more cable. But honestly, a $150-200 cable bill is breaking the budget. The kids are gone all day at school. Every evening they have practice or a game. Really? Is cable worth it with such little use? If you absolutely need tv then purchase a membership with Netflix. A $9.99 monthly tv bill is so much more affordable than cable. So make the switch today. You’ll thank me when you are putting $200.00 back into your wallet.
This one was HUGE for our family. With all the sports and games and getting home at 8 o’clock every evening, who wants to cook supper that late? NOT ME! We were going to Subway, and Mcdonald’s a couple of times a week, and the cost of our entire meal was very costly. What $30.00 would get us at Subway was not even close to what I could buy at the grocery store for $30.00. Not to mention I would already have gone to the grocery store to pick up food for the week and then be so tired to cook that we would just order out. BIG MONEY WASTER!
HUGE budget breaker!
How did I stop all the eating out? The kid’s games were still never-ending…..! I started making crockpot meals and saved so much time preparing meals ahead and knowing I had something hot to come home to, would control the temptation to order out. We’re talking close to $100.00 a week!!! So start planning meals and toss them in the crock and forget it!
3.Brand Name Clothes
This is a tough one for some. Including me!! Even the kids love NIKE and the Gap. But here’s a little secret. Get out of the malls and go to the other stores that rip off the name tags or mark name brand stuff down. For instance, TJ Maxx, Marshalls and Label Shopper offer all the name brand clothes we love for WAYYYYYYY cheaper. I’m talking $10.00 NIKE gym pants my son loves, to his favorite NIKE sneakers marked way down. Even mom loves these stores. I know we all love to look fabulous, but if it’s breaking the one income budget, then it’s time to stop. Enjoy the same clothes you love at places that offer them for cheap.
Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and trade your sweet SUV in for a more budget-friendly van. So many people want to stay at home with their kids, but don’t want to give up their toys like the Yukon that costs more than their mortgage, or the toys that sit in the shed and can only be played with during certain times of the year. Living on one income does involve giving up some of your favorite things. It’s all about choice. Do you want to survive and enjoy life, or continue to be paycheck to paycheck struggling with all of those nice things? We traded in our $40,000 GMC ACADIA for a used Town and Country Van. It has all the bells and whistles the ACADIA had, but we only spend $150.00 a month instead of $350.00 a month. Seriously well worth it!
The yearly trips to Disney will come to an end. However, there are plenty of fun things you can do with your family that is cheap and even free; and will have the same kind of memories that will last a lifetime. Our Disney trips usually cost around $3500-$4000 We don’t do every park and spend most of the week at our resort. But, even on one income, this is a lot of money! So we looked into places that are local and found a great RV resort for 450 a week! The kids love it here! We also take more trips to the ocean on the weekends and have more money to do smaller vacations that are so much more affordable. If you can’t give up your Disney trip consider driving instead of flying. A major amount of money is saved if you can drive to Florida. Almost half if not more in savings when you don’t buy the whole family plane tickets.
Cell phones and cell phone plans are so expensive that our family plan was the same as our monthly car payment with the ACADIA. It was time to make changes. Many plans offer an affordable monthly plan that won’t destroy your budget. In fact, straight talk sold in Walmart is a flat rate of $30-$45 a month depending on what plan you need. So much more doable than $200-$300. We have three phones in the house, so that’s $135 a month.
Bank fees?? Probably seems a little weird, but you may not even realize what you spend a month or even a year on bank fees. I NEVER carry cash on me. When I go shopping and have to run to an ATM and grab some cash and select yes to agree to the $3.50 fee to take cash out, that adds up! Or if I neglect my account and something gets overdrawn BAM an automatic $25 deducted when I could have just been more careful with my money. Over the years time, you’re looking at a few hundred in senseless bank fees. So try and prepare when you go shopping and grab cash from your own bank, and monitor your money closely.
Please don’t kill me. I love my coffee just as much as you do. But, have you seen the prices of coffee these days in all the coffee shops??? $3.50 for a medium hazelnut?? If you buy a coffee every morning during the weekdays, that’s $70 a month. $840 a year! A lot! I’m not saying don’t splurge on your favorite coffee every now and again. But, buy your coffee at the supermarket and make it at home. A $10.00 can of coffee will last a month. Easy savings!
Surviving on one income is tough and definitely, involves some sacrificing. No one is bending your arm and forcing you to cut back. These are all recommendations for the people that passionately want to stay home with their kids, or the people being forced to live on one income due to being laid off.
Living on one income is doable, and I know you can make it happen. It takes a lot of hard work tweaking your budget, but for the long haul, it’s so worth it when the stress of money becomes non-existent.
Share with me your secrets on how your family survives on one income. Leave your suggestions in the comments below.
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