Today we’re excited to have Stephanie from Military Travel Mama sharing her money saving tips for raising kids. Head on over to her blog to find more family friendly activities.
Did you know that the estimated cost of raising a child until 21 years of age can be well over $200,000? I mean when I think of that, given I already have one to care for and there is one more on the way, I get panicky whenever I think about that! I ask myself how the heck am I going to afford to raise two kids that will cost over $400,000 until they are both 21 combined?
One of the stressful things about raising kids is how you will raise them without having to take on loads of debt! But there is amazing news! You aren’t spending $200,000+ per kid a year. It’s over a span of two decades! As long as you find ways to make money and maintain your jobs, you can do it!
Money Saving Tips & Tricks
In order not freak out over the costs among everything else you have to pay for like utilities, your mortgage, and anything else you need that aren’t directly related to kids: you have to be frugal. You have to save. You have to create a budget. There are simple hacks in order to save money while raising kids, and below I will list some great tips that I have found to be useful:
Look for Free Entertainment
You don’t have to spend money to take your kids to places that will amuse them, and keep them busy. There are free museums, free shows, and fun events at the local library. You just have to keep tabs on what is going on in your community. Sure, they will want to go do sports like go bowling that will cost money. There is nothing wrong with that if you can budget the money to spend on the occasional outing. The keyword is occasional.
Look for Sales and Clip Coupons
Always be on the lookout for money saving sales in the area for items that you need to buy such as clothing or appliances. Sales will be advertised in local newspapers and on the internet. Take advantage of those. Same goes for coupons that you can use for groceries and other items you need. Have you thought about how much money you will be saving if you buy items on sale, and use coupons for groceries? The same thing goes for eating out at restaurants! Look for coupons or 2-for-1 kind of deals! Eating out is costly. And one thing to remember: if you bought because it’s on sale, you haven’t SAVED 20%. You’ve spent more than you intended.
Don’t Buy Frivolous Things Often
Luxury items are items that you wouldn’t say you need. Luxuries can be rewards for achieving goals for yourself and your kids. If you for instance lost weight and attained a goal, or you are proud of yourself for sticking to your budget, you can reward yourself with a luxury. If you kid worked hard at school and got a good grade on his or her report card, then your kid can enjoy the reward for that like a toy that he or she wanted to get for a long time! Also, make events like eating out a rare thing. There is nothing wrong with enjoying a good meal at a restaurant occasionally like once or twice a month, but don’t do it too often. As mentioned in the section above, eating out can be expensive.
Another reason saving your money and creating a budget is crucial is because you
want to plan for when your kids go to college. Why not go to the bank and talk to a financial
consultant about how to financially plan for your kids’ education? This way you won’t have to worry about you having to take out debt, or your kids to take out debt to go to school. There are
educational savings plans. All you need to do is inquire. And as morbid as this sounds, you will not live forever and funerals are expensive. The last thing you want to do is burden your kids with coughing up money that they may not have to pay for your funeral expenses. Therefore, look into
taking out life insurance for yourself and your spouse. Be sure to educate yourself on the difference of term and level life insurance. You will need to talk to a recommended life insurance broker to help you out. And don’t leave it too long because the longer you leave it, the more expensive it will be as you age or if an ailment comes up.
So if you plan your life and kids lives ahead financially, you cut down on buying frivolous items, you look for sales and use money saving coupons for groceries, and you take advantage of some great freebies, you will be able to manage your money and have no issues with your finances. Your kids will also learn good habits and become frugal themselves when they are adults!