Living frugally and stretching your penny can seem daunting, and living with a large family on a tight budget is even more challenging. But, there is no reason to worry! By following certain tips and tricks, you can learn how to manage your money more wisely and avoid wasting it on unnecessary things. Read on to discover our top five frugal living tips.
Create a monthly budget and stick to it
Setting financial boundaries is important in order to avoid overspending. Therefore, consider creating a monthly budget – get a pen and list all your monthly expenses. Divide your budget plan into two categories – essential and optional. Your bills, debts, and food are in the first category, while entertainment, travelling, and hobbies are things that are nice to have if there is some leftover money. That way, you’ll know where your money is going, which can help you eliminate unnecessary expenses from the list.
Rent a car instead of buying one
When you need to travel somewhere, paying for bus tickets for your whole family can be quite expensive, while owning a car comes with numerous responsibilities. Car loan payments and constant tank refills are a hassle when trying to save up, not to mention the insurance and car maintenance that come with car ownership. Families from New Zealand understand this, so it’s no wonder many of them opt for cheap car rental hire deals to provide them with a type of car they can use to travel with their families. Renting a car is a much cheaper alternative to owning one, and it’s a great solution for larger families who like travelling in comfort. Also, there is a wide range of models to choose from to make sure you get the type and size of the vehicle that best suits your needs.
Cook your meals and grow your own garden
Eating out can be great from time to time, but taking a large family out for dinner every week can be very costly. Cooking your food at home is a much cheaper option. Consider making a weekly menu plan and buying ingredients in advance to save both time and money. Always bring the list of ingredients when shopping to avoid impulsive purchases. In addition, plan your meals around what you already have at home – that way, you’re making sure that nothing goes to waste. You can also save money on groceries by growing your own garden. No matter how big or small of a garden you can grow, planting some staple foods like tomatoes and potatoes will help reduce your monthly food expenses significantly and it will also help you eat better and healthier.
Go shopping in thrift stores
Thrift shops and second-hand stores always have something good to offer. Find a few local shops nearby and browse – you’ll be amazed by what you can find. Such shops are a great option for large families since children outgrow their clothing and shoes very quickly, so there is no point in paying full price for something you can get for a fraction of the original price. Hand-me-downs are also a great way to save money on clothing – ask your relatives to see if they have some clothing they would like to give away. It’ll help them free up some space, and you’ll get clothes for your kids – it’s a win-win situation.
Use cloth diapers and breastfeed your baby
Many moms-to-be are caught by surprise once they find out how much money they’ll need to spend on baby supplies. The two things that demand constant re-purchasing are diapers and formulas. Buying diapers for babies is quite expensive, so many frugal moms opt for reusable, cloth diapers. Although they are a greater initial investment, cloth diapers will save you a lot of money in the long run. Cloth diapers are also an environmentally-friendly alternative to disposable ones, and using them will reduce your carbon footprint. Another thing that can get quite expensive when you constantly re-buy it is baby formula. Other than being a more natural way to feed your baby and bond with them, breastfeeding your children is far cheaper than buying baby milk and can help you save a lot of money in the process.
Remember that you don’t need to keep up with the Joneses – not everyone has the same lifestyle and incomes, so adjust your spending in order to live carefree and debt-free. Use our frugal living tips for creating a lifestyle that supports your family’s needs – you’ll be amazed by the amount of money you’ll have saved at the end of each month!