When you look to save money as a family, you need to think about all the expenses that come with having a partner and children or pets. Unlike a single person, there are many factors that will come into play as your child grows and as your family evolves. At first, you might just spend like normal. However, quickly you realize that it is easy to spend everything you have when you don’t start with a plan.
This can turn into a “the more you make, the more you spend,” type of situation. Getting a hold of your spending early can help you keep from ending up in tough circumstances. Today, we’re going to walk through the best steps that you can take when creating a budget as a family.
Write Everything Down
First, take a look at what it costs for you to make it to the next day. This should be your home, food, gas, and insurance. Each of these things is required and will not be able to change aside from using less or finding cheaper options, which we will talk about in a moment. Write all that at the top. If you have young children, look at what you are spending on them each week. Then, look at everything else. Write everything down. For example, childcare or student loans.
Cross Off What You Don’t Need
Now, look at the recurring expenses that you don’t need. Maybe you have a grandparent that would be willing to watch your child during the week. You can cross that off the list. Maybe you don’t need Hulu and Netflix. Each thing that you get rid of will save you money. Use a budget calculator like Mint to see what you are spending each week and month.
Look For Other Ways to Save
As mentioned before, one of the best ways to save is to find cheaper alternatives for what you are already doing. If you are shopping at the high-end grocery store, then checking into a cheaper store could save you money. Similarly, if you are buying name brand, save money by getting the store brand.
Use Credit Cards and Debit Cards Responsibly
Keet in mind that each time you use a credit card or debit card, you are taking money out of your account. While short term financial plans can look good when everything is on a credit card, that money will eventually have to be paid back, or it will start affecting your credit score. Each week, take a look at what you’ve spent and see if you can cut back to increase your savings.
Looking For Help?
If you haven’t set up an emergency fund, then you might need a cash advance when something goes wrong. Fast cash from short term loans, such as payday loans, can help you pay for emergency expenses while you wait for your next paycheck. Check out iCash for options on how you can get a cash loan and what it takes to get one!