As the economy continues to be shaky, families must be especially diligent if they are to make ends meet. There are many ways that everyone can trim a little off the budget, from using price comparison sites to find the best deals to cutting out unnecessary expenses every month.
Here are a few tips for ways to keep the family financially sound and get everyone involved.
Coupon clipping is just as popular today as it has ever been. Parents can get kids in on the fun of saving big at the grocery store by hiring them to cut out coupons, particularly on Sundays.
For extra incentive, they can pay the kids a penny or nickel for every coupon cut out, and this can help the kids start learning how to manage money themselves. Cutting out coupons together can be a fun family time as the children cut and the parents sort the coupons into the appropriate slots or vice versa.
Make up a reward chart and only do expensive things like dinner out or a trip to the movies as the end result of hard work. Kids will have more appreciation for these special occasions if they really are special and if they helped to bring them about.
By paying for entertainment only occasionally, you will save a significant amount of money, and you can spend other evenings at home doing free things like playing board games or reading a favorite book together.
Cut down on subscription services like cable and cell phones. When you have cable, it only encourages children to watch television more often. Most parents would agree that this is not really advisable. You will reduce temptation if you just stick with the basic cable plan, and you will save a lot of money in the process. It will also help to make you more intentional about what you watch. It’s a lot easier to keep track of the shows on half a dozen different channels, and you can decide together what is worth a look.
Cell phone bills, like cable bills, have a way of skyrocketing, so don’t indulge in extras like Internet service and unlimited texting. Limit the amount of time your children spend on the phone; in fact, it’s generally best, especially for children under 16, if they not have cell phones of their own. Let them use yours at certain times or just use the landline if you still have one. However, if you use cell phones regularly, the landline is another expense you might want to cut.
For family vacations, look at price comparison sites before you decide on flights, hotel rooms and other expenses plan well in advance of when you are going so that you can get the best deals and have plenty of time for all of you to save up money to spend on the trip.
These are just a few things that your family can do to help ease your financial burden. Get the kids involved in coming up with some other ideas and never underestimate the value of putting money aside for savings.
The sooner you open a savings account for your kids, the sooner they will begin to understand that money is not just for immediate gratification. Together, you can work toward a brighter fiscal future.
Learn more about teaching kids the value of a dollar and how to set a budget in these posts:
Disclaimer: This was a sponsored post in which The Mommy Bunch received compensation, the validity of any statements cannot be verified by The Mommy Bunch.