It’s hard enough taking care of a family, but managing household finances can seem next to impossible with this tight economy. As a guardian, you want to provide the best for your loved ones, but without breaking the bank. The good news is families are becoming more aware of the need to take care of their finances by saving more, budgeting, and even considering expenditures more carefully. There are countless tips for saving on everyday expenses. Obviously, not all tips will apply to every household. Be sure to first identify areas where your family can cut spending. Here are some simple yet effective household saving tips to get you started:
Focus On Food Costs
Although food is a compulsory expense in every household, there are several ways you can cut down food costs. For starters, avoid take outs or eating out and consider preparing meals at home. Preparing meals in advance will make it easier to eat at home and utilise leftovers. Also, compare grocery store prices, make a list before you go shopping and stick to it, buy groceries in bulk, buy fresh foods that are in season, buy generic foods, and start growing your own food among other things.
Keep Birthdays Simple
Birthdays are a wonderful time for the family to come together and celebrate life. But you don’t have to spend a fortune to make it special. The best ways to save on birthdays is to set a budget, combine birthday celebrations, decorate your own cake, limit the presents and consider making them yourselves, and use a public space like a park instead of renting a party facility. Don’t feel obligated to provide a grand party for your kids; if anything, focus on the experiences since that’s what creates unforgettable memories.
Keep Housing Costs within Your Means
Housing is most probably the biggest expense in any family’s budget. Avoid paying as much for the house to begin with. Compare mortgage costs to ensure you are getting the best possible deal. For those who are renting, try renegotiating your rent once the lease is up for renewal. The next logical step is to ensure your housing costs aren’t taking up a huge portion of your income. Energy bills take up a huge percentage of housing costs. Check out how to reduce them here. Also, if you have extra space in your home, consider renting it out to make some extra cash.
Plan Ahead For the Holidays
Many families go into debt after the holidays mainly due to overspending on gifts and travelling to be with loved ones. Start saving early enough to avoid unnecessary debts after the festivities. Set up a separate savings account particularly for your holiday expenses to avoid spending the funds on something else. Set the amount of money to add to that account each pay period to reach your savings goal before the holiday period.
Talk Budgeting & Saving With Your Kids
Learning how to reduce household expenses isn’t just for the grownups; kids should be involved as well. Start teaching your children about money and budgeting by going over the basics of saving and spending. It’s never too early for this; in fact, what they learn now will come in handy when they are all grown up to make financial decisions on their own.