Some mums (like me) want to be stay at home mums. The family budget doesnt always alow for this. If you are hoping to show your better half how much money can be saved by you staying at home i have been coming up with ideas. Alot of the blogs i have read about saving money on children are things like entertainment and making a will. Not really what i had in mind. What i am really looking for are everyday ideas. I have picked up a few over the years which i am hoping to use.
1. Facewashers instead of wetwipes. This one is from my childcare days. Roll up facewashers and stack them in a container. Pour over warm water enough to just wet them (you can add a few drops of baby oil if you want). Wipe, wash and repeat. You will need between 10-20 depending on how often you intend to wash them. Make sure you use a different color for cleaning faces.
2. Dryers. I have a deep hate for them. If i own one i have to use it and they suck electricity like nothing else! I literally halved my electricity bill by getting rid of my dryer.
3. Buy bulk. Buy a chest freezer if you have the space and stock up. At the supermarket last week i could buy 400g beef mince for $9 or 2kg for $11. Thats about 4-5 meals worth of mince. Pasta is also a saver with home brand often going for $1 a bag.
4. We dont do coupons in Australia like the US, but that doesnt mean that you shouldnt be keeping an eye out for sales. If you can freeze it, or store it, buy it. Spaghetti sauce can go for as low as $0.50 a jar on sale.
5. Dont get into the debt trap. A good lesson i learnt is that alot of kids and young adults (under 30) have so much debt because they want what their parents have. But their parents spent the last 50yrs getting that stuff. Dont go for instant gratification.
6. Buy used and save the difference. This one i got from the Duggars (they have 19children). Say you want a new pair of jeans for $100. Buy a pair from the thrift shop for $20 and put the extra $80 in your savings account. That way in a year or so you will have quite alot of money to take a holiday or pay a chunk off your home loan. I once went to a salvos store and they had a whole stock from Jeans west, brand new, tags on. They smelt of smoke from a neighbouring store fire so couldnt be sold anymore and were donated. Brand new, this season clothes for 1/4 the price.
7. I know alot of kids stuff is cool and shinny but honestly kids dont need it. Ever seen a kid ignore a toy and play with the box instead? Think of games and activities that you can do with household items. You would be suprised how entertained both you and the kids will be.
8. #7 goes for dressing the nursery too. Yes 10pairs of little shoes are cute but the kid only needs one pair, maybe two if one set gets wet. Likewise do you really need a crib AND a bassinette? Cot bumbers are cute but they have to be taken out because they are a choking hazard. Think of the essentials and things that are going to last (they can be cute too).
9. Baby specific things can be over priced. Like booking a wedding cake, they will up the price because its a wedding. Cott sheets can be pricey, or you can buy double bed sheets, cut them in 4 and re-hem and you have 4 sheets for the price of one.
10. Channel the sound of music. Clothes from curtains? You will be the only one to know what that cute little dress is made of. I have seen beautiful kids clothes made from tableclothes, old shirts, curtains. I am making my own bibs with old clothing and friends have asked where i bought them so they can get some.
11. Again buy things that will last. When buying a pram think on how long you intend to keep it for. Sure you have a baby now but it will get bigger, whats the weight limit? Planning on having more kids? Does it accomodate a second seat? Carseats too, some go up to 4yrs and some will go right up to 8yrs old.