As fathers, it’s no secret that having children can be expensive. In fact, data shows that it costs a little over $233,000 to raise a child until they reach the age of 17. To make matters worse, our wages and incomes are remaining stagnant while costs of living and rates of inflation are on the rise. For today’s families, this news is disheartening, especially when we have to work extra hours to make ends meet or put aside money for our children. Thankfully, it’s not all doom and gloom. We can find smart ways to save money for our kids and become more financially secure with some creative thinking and planning.
Please scroll through the following tips to save money for our children and help balance our budgets in the process:
Make saving a priority.
It might sound a little selfish, but pay yourself first. Yes, before paying the bills or heading to the store you should deposit money into your savings account- even if it is only $10 or $15. This practice will keep us from overspending and ensure that we are setting money aside to save.
Cut the cable or satellite.
Avoid this costly bill every month by accessing numerous shows and movies online or subscribe to a cheaper streaming service to save money. If you are a member of Amazon Prime, you already have access to their Prime video service. Head to the local library to borrow materials for free! If ditching television service isn’t realistic, call your provider and look into discounts they offer.
Avoid playing the name game with brands.
An easy way to cut your grocery and clothing budget is to ditch the name brands. Purchase generic or store brands when available and soon you will be able to notice a huge difference in your spending. Use the savings to invest or open a savings account for the kids.
Start investing in a college fund today- not later.
Whether your daughter starts college in two years or sixteen, start saving today. Time is our best friend when it comes to this major life expense and every little bit will help and prevent our kids from having to take out more student loans. Make it a priority to start a college savings account today, so over the years they can build interest.
Diversify your savings and investments.
We have all heard the saying, “don’t put all your eggs in one basket”. Take this timeless advice and smartly save money for our children with savings bonds, buying diamonds or gold, investing in real estate, buying stock in the market, and starting a traditional savings account to diversify investing. This strategy gives us several different ways to expand our income and offers a safety net if one of the sects isn’t performing well.
Limit the “stuff” in your home.
A relatively easy way to save a little cash for our kids is simply cutting back on the amount of toys, games, clothing, or nicknacks we buy our daughters. Our children really don’t need to have every new toy that hits the shelf. Only purchase these items when needed or for special events like birthdays or holidays.
Buy used when possible.
Kids grow like weeds and are constantly needing new clothing or sporting equipment. When possible, buy used baby gear, clothes, equipment, or toys. Check out garage sales, online used selling sites, or consignment stores before heading to the store to buy everything new. Often, children’s items don’t get worn out and you can find quality items that are gently worn.
Host a garage sale.
Make a little money by cleaning house and sell outgrown or unused items. You can use these profits to start an emergency fund or pad your nest egg. You might be surprised how much cash you can raise from stuff that has just been collecting dust in your garage or basement.
Say goodbye to debt and fees.
Pay down your debt and loans to save money spent on interest and fees. In addition, pay your bills by the due dates and consider signing up for recurring monthly payments to avoid late fees. If making a payment is impossible, don’t wait. Make a call to the company to talk about arranging a solution to prevent penalties or higher interest rates.
Cutback on extracurricular activities.
Allow a child to join only a couple of sports or clubs. This tactic provides two benefits: your daughter will gain some much needed downtime and save you a lot of money.
Bring back homemade meals.
Avoid eating out and eat at home to save money. Try meal planning and food prepping on the weekend to avoid the nightly struggle of figuring out what to serve and to avoid waiting in long take-out lines or unhealthy options.
What are the smart ways you save money for your children?