Recently my sister in law posted on her facebook page the amount of money that she and her husband spend each year on day care alone for their children and it absolutely blew my mind. With two children in daycare full time and one through the summer they spend over $14,000.00 each year.
Anyway, this got me to thinking about how much money that my husband and I have saved over the years because I have been able to be a stay at home mom. And I started thinking of other ways we as stay at home mom's can save or make our family some money?
Here is what I came up with. This list is actually mostly all things I do. I am sure there are others that I just haven't thought of but here it is.
- Rummage Sale - When you declutter your home have a rummage sale with the items that you no longer love.
- Consignment - Consign your clothes and household items.
- Limit Driving - I stay home most days of the week. On my errand day I plan my trip so that I am making a circle and working my way back home so that I am not driving back and forth all of the time. I do not make unneccesary trips to town just because and when I need to go to a store or somewhere that is a ways off I wait until I have several things I need to do in that area of town before I go.
- DIY - I make my own laundry detergent, softner, dryer sheets, window cleaner, all purpose cleaners and toilet and shower cleaners.
- Conserve - Keep things unplugged when not in use. Turn off light switches. Limit the amount of water used when washing clothes, take shorter showers, etc...
- Downgrade - My husband and I switched to a pre-paid cell phone a year ago and it was one of the best thinga we have done to help with our finances. We did not have smart phones but were paying nearly $95 per month for our 2 phones. Now we simply add minutes when needed. For our phones now I pay about $15 per month average and we have more than enough talk/text time.
- Coupon - I am not talking extreme couponing but saving 50 cents off a tube of toothpaste or 25 cents off of your dish soap adds up over time.
- Price Match - Watch your Sunday paper. Walmart will price match even store brand items.
- Shop Sales - Only buy certain items like the more expensive ones when they are on sale and stock up.
- Goodwill or Thrift Stores - Most of my clothes in my closet come from either Goodwill or they are hand-me-downs. Very few articles of my clothing have I bought at a Department store and even the few of those that I have I got when they were on sale or clearance.
- Clothes Swap - I do not do this but wish I had someone close that wore my same size clothing that I could do this with. I think it would be fun!
- Meal Planning - This is a biggie! Plan your meals, make your grocery list from your menu and cook at home. Eating out costs a LOT - so limit eating out and cook at home.
- Pre Packaged Items are a NO NO - I am not saying that I never buy these things but I will say that I rarely buy them. I tell my kids often (and my husband) that I bought stuff to cook. :) Pre packaged cookies, or already made snacks or foods can really make your grocery bill high (I know from experience). Now I bake my own cookies or sweets at home. I buy one bag of cereal every 2 weeks for my boys for breakfast after that is gone they have to eat homemade pancakes, gravy and biscuits, eggs or something else less expensive that I can make myself.
- Offer services - If you have a special talent or something you love to do then why not get paid for it? I have friends who decorate cakes, make homemade bags, diaper bags, purses, etc..., cater parties, make and sell candles, babysit and the list could go on and on. The best part is they do this while tending to their home and children.
- Recycle - currently I save my aluminum pop cans.
If you are a stay at home mom, what are some ways that you save or make money to help with your families finances?
To Read Part 2, My Readers Suggestions click here.