If you’re reading this after the little ones have been kitted out and have gone back to school, you must be breathing a sigh of relief that the big hoo-haw is over. Perhaps you are reveling in the fact that you have some sort of routine to return to. Well done you!
And if you are still getting the last few bits ready, your time will come.
The summer holidays have no doubt been an expensive one and have eaten into not only your energy reserves but also your budget.
Well, it’s time to get back on track with your budget and to try to keep it that way. Here, we will give you some tips on how you can save money even during the school term.
- Meal Planning: One of the best ways to ensure that the family eats right at a fraction of the cost is to stick to planning what you will prepare for meals and shop only for those ingredients.
- School meals: decide as a family what is best. Is it preferred and cheaper to take packed lunches to school? Or is it best to have lunches served by the school? The best option may even be a combination of the two: packed lunches on some days and school dinners on others. Check too, whether your child may be entitled to free school meals. This would save a whole lot.
- After school clubs and activities: Most local authorities, some schools, and even some churches operate after-school clubs at subsidized costs. This enables your little ones to learn new skills, develop their interests, meet new friends and even experience the world. You may even get together with other parents and take turns watching and entertaining the kids in each others’ homes after school.
- Make those ‘back to school’ supplies last: You’ve spent hard earned money on buying those bags and shoes, uniforms etc. Do ensure that you encourage kids to take care of them by keeping them in good condition by keeping them clean etc. Encourage kids in the habit of saving rather than spending.
- Maintaining the home: You can do so much to maintain your home without spending too much and seeing to it that your home serves you well and for many years. Here are some of the things we do.
- Don’t watch the Joneses: This one is serious. Personal finance is called personal finance because it is personal. It has so much to do with your family, your income, your other resources. No other family is quite like yours in every way. Always think about what you can do for your family. Avoid snake oil financial opportunities at all cost! Be financially savvy, not stupid.
- Increase your family income: As most of my readers are females, here is a post to share how you can really make the best of your time if you are a stay at home mom.
- Grow your own: I’m not suggesting that you become a full-time farmer. But there is so much fun, so much for the kids to learn, if you plant what you can, in the space (even containers you have). We have been known to plant stuff and this year has been our best harvest year for tomatoes, courgettes, peas, and strawberries, even in cold cold England.
- Be kind to others: We truly believe in being good to others and waiting for some of this goodness to come back round to us and our offspring. Be good neighbors, create your own random acts of frugal kindness and you will definitely see the rewards of your efforts.
- Practice frugal living and get the whole family involved. This week we were able to enjoy the most amazing three week holiday ever! We are not rich, but we believe in avoiding every little sound and fad, and save instead for the longer time, bigger opportunities.
You can do it. And guess what, you feel so much better, having sat down as a family and deciding and sticking to your plans for making the best of the life you have to live. Your finances are yours to control.