Over the years, the idea of living on a budget has gained itself a few different stamps. From being a necessity, and pretty much a way of life, way back when, to being a sign of going through a tough time, the idea of having to budget yourself seemed to take a bit of a nose dive. What was once a humble way to live quickly became a sign of weakness, or not doing well in life. However, all of that is starting to change. These days, living on a budget is not only wise, but it’s also trendy. Because when you live on a budget, you’re doing your best to allocate your money well.
Just like being honest with parenting, it’s time to get real, raw and honest with living. It’s become too easy to struggle, to overspend, to not think about money. When really, what we need to be doing is becoming more aware of what we earn, what we own, and what we spend. Right now, living on a budget means that you have to be more conscious of the money you do have, and make it stretch that little bit further. And when you do that, you’re freeing up money to save elsewhere or spend consciously on something more important.
Sometimes, the cost of living can really put a straight on your eating habits. There’s always a lot to take into consideration when it comes to providing for your family and ensuring that they eat well, but it doesn’t have to be impossible. You can create delicious, wholesome meals on a budget. For a bit of inspiration on how to do it, here’s what you can do.
Even though you’re trying to cut back on your food shop spending, you still want to be able to provide your family with healthy, nutritious and balanced meals. It may seem difficult, but it’s actually a lot easier to achieve than you might first think. The trick is to purchase ingredients that can go along way. For example, if you buy chicken breasts, you can make a chicken bake for dinner, have left overs and still ensure that you have some meat for sandwiches the next day.
Eating on a budget and still staying healthy can be quite fun during the week, but when it gets to the weekend, you can often feel ready for a takeaway. But takeaways can be so expensive. Instead, opt to create a budget-friendly homemade replacement instead. Whether you fancy a curry or a burger, pizza or even a kebab, you can create a better dish at home for almost half the price!
Then there’s also things that you’d often buy at the supermarket without thinking twice about. But, did you know that you could save money by making them at home? From fun cocktails to ice-cream, biscuits to popcorn, you will be able to say yourself money, enjoy more flavoursome foods and have more to go around by being a bit creative and making them yourself.
With the rise of social media, we feel more pressure than ever to live a certain way, or have homes that look a certain way. That can often lead to us buying more, spending unnecessarily, and changing our minds over what our homes should look like. But, when you live on a budget, you have to be more creative with your home, and think twice before you spend. So how can you make it enjoyable? Here’s how:
When you want your home to look good, you can often find yourself forgetting about your budgeting skills and buying what you want. But that adds up. Instead, try to look at your interiors objectively. Start room by room, and see what items you can recycle from other rooms, look for most of your furniture on eBay or at car boot sales, and use elegant color palettes so that you can change things easily by updating your accent colors. Most importantly at all, ban yourself from impulse buys. When you see something you like for the home, wait a week before buying it. The chances are, you’ll see sense or have changed your mind anyway.
Cleaning is something that we all have in our daily or weekly routines. It’s also that one activity that we always find ourselves doing the most. Whether we’re scrubbing the floors, doing the laundry or washing dishes, there’s always something to do. And each activity requires its own set of cleaning products – or does it? If you’re used to buying your cleaning products from the supermarket, you could save a lot of money by making your own instead.
One of the things that can be really hard to budget for when it comes to our homes, is our utility bills. They always seem to cost a bomb. Whether you’re paying over the odds for your electricity or even your TV package, you might want to think about the ways that you can cut down the costs of your household bills. From switching providers to changing the packages you have, you can save a lot of money on your monthly outgoings.
When it comes to school, you may feel as if the expenses are out of your hands. However, there are ways that you can still work on a budget when it comes to the school costs that you have to pick up. School can often be a huge part of your family life, and come with a lot of unexpected expenses. So, to try and work them into your new budget-living life, here’s how to bring down the amount you spend.
Uniforms can often be the biggest expense that we all have when it comes to school costs. When your kids grow at a crazy rate, or they ruin their clothing on a regular basis, you can feel as if your money is always getting sucked into buying more school supplies. But, there are ways that you can easily save money on school uniforms. Along with the option of picking up second-hand uniforms, you could also keep hand-me-downs for your kids, let down the hems as they grow, or even change things like trousers into shorts to save on waste.
Then, you also have their food to think about. When you’re facing the task of making sure your kids have healthy, filling food for lunch, but you don’t want to spend a lot of money on snacks and store-bought lunchbox fillers, you can often feel at a loss. Aside from signing up for school meals, you might want to think about whipping up a few cheaper school lunch recipes and see how your kids like them.
Then there’s also the trips and activities that come with being in school. It’s not easy because you might want your kid to do well in school, but you might have to think about whether their extra lessons are worth it. If they are, can you use your cost savings from elsewhere for it?
Sometimes, you can find it easy to start cutting back on your shopping, your bills, or the unnecessary items that you buy, but you can often hard it hard to cut back on the fun. When you’re faced with days of school holidays to fill or bored children that are causing chaos, spending money on activities and entertainment comes naturally. But, you can still have fun with your family when you live on a budget.
Staying in with your children can often feel like torture for you all. When your kids have too much energy, and they want to be out and about, and you need a break, it can seem like a bad idea. But, your home gives you lots of fun options to consider that won’t cost. From baking together or doing some gardening to having a movie night or playing board games, there are lots of ways to entertain your kids for free.
When you do go out, you can often find that you spend a fortune without even trying. So, before you plan fun trips out and about, think about the ways you can cut costs and cut back. Having fun on a tight budget doesn’t have to feel half-heartened. In fact, by being thrifty, you can sometimes score extra days out for nothing!
Old Fashioned Fun
And then, you could always think about entertaining your children and having fun as a family the old fashioned way. Kids often want to spend their time with new games or toys, but that can be so costly. Instead, you can have fun for free and spend quality time together when you use old fashioned ideas. Whether you head out into nature and explore, play cards or even go on a bike ride, you’ll find that you have infinite ways to have fun without spending a penny.