- Make Your Coffee At Home - As a parent, coffee becomes a necessity. But buying a daily cup of joe at the coffee shop that shall not be named can cost upwards of $6. That's really going to put a dent in the budget. Save yourself a few bucks by making your coffee at home. Take it a step further by buying your coffee in bulk if you're an addict like myself.
- Cheap Wine isn't Always Bad Wine - Wine is a great way to wind down after a stressful day. It's also a tasty lunch if you're having one of those days. But it doesn't have to break the bank. While my favorite wine runs at $21 a bottle, I found a perfectly delicious $5 wine at Walmart that does the job.
- Comparison Shop - Whether it's groceries, household goods, medicines or toys you could save big bucks by comparison shopping. Always check the online prices at stores that will price match. I recently saved over 30% on a breast pump and took $5 off a toy by matching online prices. One of my prescriptions costed over $300 at one store for the generic brand, but only $18 at another. We save over $100 a month by splitting our grocery shopping between 3 different stores. It's time consuming but it saves lots of money!
- Use Target Store Pickup - Be honest with yourself, how many times do you walk into Target for one item and walk out with a cart full of things you don't need and one of those $6 coffees? Either learn some self-control, ship items to your home or use their store pickup.
- Take Advantage of Credit - Credit can be used for good or for evil. Do not use credit cards if you will buy things you don't need or can't afford. However, if you can control your spending and stick to your budget, take advantage of a credit card with rewards. Whether it's cash back or travel miles, credit card rewards can really add up and save you money in the long run.
- Clip Coupons - Clipping coupons doesn't have to be as time consuming as it used to be. Many stores have apps or websites which feature their deals and coupons. Take advantage of these deals if it is for something you need to buy. If you want to get into extreme couponing you can get lots of household items for free.
- Look for and Accept Help - There are a number of ways you can get help. The government offers programs like SNAP (formerly food stamps) and WIC for food. Friends and family may be willing to pass on old kid's clothes or toys. You can check sites like FreeCycle.com and Craigslist.com for free items.
- Love Thy Dollar Store - The dollar store, particularly the 'everything is a dollar' type, are a great place to find deals. You can find everything from cleaning supplies to kitchen goods to party supplies for a fraction of the price at any other store. Check out our article on 10 Items Worth Buying at the Dollar Store.
- Differentiate Between Needs and Wants - Yes I know I classified coffee and wine as necessities, but they are... for me anyways. It can be hard in today's world when we are constantly bombarded with advertisements about the latest and greatest gadgets. It's ok to treat yourself every once in awhile, but do your best to separate your needs from your wants.
- Enjoy Free Outings - For both family excursions and date nights, try to make your outings free or cheap. Places like the park, beach or library can all be great places to take your family for a day of fun. Many museums have free days and you can watch calendars for local free events. Eat at home before you go so you're not as tempted to pick up food while you're out. Having fun doesn't have to cost money!
10 (More) Money Saving Tips for Parents
Saving money and simplifying your life is a great goal for any family. Implementing a few of these tips can help you build savings and live happily within your means. If you missed the first article, check out our 10 Money Saving Tips for New Parents.