I’m a busy mom of three kids and I’m always looking for ways that I can save money, and I know you are too! After reading this post you will have five easy ways for moms to save money! Let’s get started!
First, if your family is anything like mine, you may have some months when your finances are tighter than others. It might be due to an unexpected job loss, or you woke up and realized it was December and Christmas was around the corner. Or simply, there were a lot of unforeseen purchases you needed to make that you had not planned for, like soccer registration, especially when you had no idea your kid could even kick a soccer ball!
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Second, little things can add up and all a sudden your monthly finances are stressing you out and you realize – ouch – I need to either make our money stretch really far this month, or I need to sell my kidney (just kidding, don’t sell your kidney), but you may need to sell some of that extra stuff you have lying around collecting dust.
I’ve been there, quite a few times and totally understand! I’d love to share a few easy ways for moms to save money and make extra money that are incredibly easy to do – so easy you can even do them today to help with this month’s budget!
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Unexpected Expenses Add Up
Those little unexpected expenditures caught us me by surprise this month. My husband and I did our monthly budget committee meeting, planned and spent all our money on paper and then the month started to play out. Things were being added that we hadn’t planned, and we were left shuffling money around to accommodate.
Finally, there were a few things I wanted to purchase mid-month that unless I could make a little bit of extra money, I wasn’t going to be able to purchase them. I didn’t worry though, I realized there were a few things I could do today to make a little bit of extra money and there were a few things I could do to save some money, so I got to work! If you are feeling the same way, below are few ways to make money today – you can do it!
1. Sell Your Old Stuff
We all have stuff sitting around the house that we could sell and make some quick money off of. I like to call this stuff my “Garage Sale Stuff.” It’s the stuff that you would sell if you were going to have a garage sale. If the weather is nice and your neighborhood allows it, go ahead and have a garage sale today!
I personally don’t want to go to all the trouble of a garage sale without proper planning so it’s a great thing that garage sales are not only done in your garage anymore – now there are online garage sale groups that operate right in your neighborhood.
All you do is post a picture, wait for someone to say they want to buy it, and then they come and pick it up! Like I told you, EASY! I love this way of selling stuff because it’s super quick and doesn’t take a ton of work.
One word of caution, selling your old stuff online usually takes longer – so plan to be patient. I may sell 5 or 6 items in one day and then can go for a week or more without selling anything.
I’m part of a bunch of online groups local to my area through Facebook as well as a site called VarageSale. If you don’t have VarageSale in your area, do a quick Facebook search for local Buy/Sell/Trade groups in your area and start selling stuff!
2. Shop From Your Own Pantry
I realize this may not work for everyone, but if you are a big couponer and have a stockpile (even if it’s a small stockpile), try to put together meals from staple items you already have in your pantry. This will save you money at the grocery store for that month and every dollar saved adds up!
Get creative! Make a list of some of your family favorites meals, and chances are you have a lot of the necessary items in your pantry right now that you can use to create a meal without having to buy very much at the store that week. Having a stockpile is there for a reason, to buy items when they are at their cheapest amount and then use them – so go and use them!
Make a solid effort to plan meals using mainly what is already in your pantry and freezer, and you will be able to significantly cut your grocery budget. Chances are, it won’t be possible to do this every week, but it’s a great habit to put in place at least once a month. Plus, it gets all those random food items out of your house before they expire! Try doing this towards the end of the month when your grocery budget is nearing depletion.
I wish I was capable of planning my meals a month in advance, but I just can’t seem to get my act together enough to do that! Normally, I tend to plan my meals weekly, after I’ve looked at the grocery ads to see what is on sale. Then, I try to match up what is on sale to what I have in my pantry and freezer already and create some meals from them. It takes some planning, but it’s so worth it!
3. Swap Babysitting
My husband and I try to make date nights a priority, but I’ll be honest, they seem to take a back seat most of the time. In the rare occasion that we do get a date night, we try extremely hard to not pay babysitting fees on top of date night fees (dinner, movies, etc – it all adds up fast).
When money is tight, it’s a lot easier to just forego the date night altogether– but I know it’s super important to have time alone with just my spouse and we are trying to make this a priority (which we seem to fail at constantly – so it’s ok if you do too)!
If you get a date night, which I hope that you do, instead of paying for a babysitter, offer to swap babysitting with a good friend. You watch their kids one evening so they can have a date night, and then they watch your kids the next weekend. Saves you money and you might like the idea so much that you won’t ever have to pay a babysitter again!
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4. Use Coupon Apps
I grocery shop once a week and although I save money when I use paper coupons, I love making money too – which I can do by using coupon apps. Coupons apps pay you a little bit extra for things you already buy and is an easy way for moms to save money!
Ibotta (yes this is my referral link, so I thank you in advance for signing up! The best part about using my referral link is that you get rewarded too, you will earn $10 after you sign up with my referral link and redeem your first receipt) is my favorite coupon app!
If you have never used Ibotta before, it’s very easy and it allows you to earn extra money just for buying what you were already planning to buy, and you can stack it with paper coupons too (which means you earn and save at the same time!)! It’s a win-win!
After your account accumulates $20 (trust me, this happens fast, especially at the beginning when you use my referral link because you start with $10 in your account), you can cash out via PayPal or with gift cards! Sometimes I cash out for gift cards to the movies or my favorite restaurants and we use them for date nights.
Most of the time, I like to cash out via PayPal for actual cash, which I tend to put right back into my grocery budget for the month or to buy the special gift for myself that I was wanting. When it’s a tight money month, I’ll use the cash to supplement our monthly expenses.
You can learn a lot more about Ibotta and how to use it by reading this post – Why You Should Use Ibotta To Save Money.
I also really like the app Fetch Rewards – use the REFERRAL CODE: U1BBA (and you’ll get 2,000 points after you sign up)! With Fetch Rewards (yes this is my referral link, so I thank you in advance for signing up! After you sign up, share your personal referral link and you can earn up to 4,000 points every time someone signs up!) there is no matching up of products or requirements to buy certain products, you simply upload your receipts from any grocery store, club store, or convenience store. The receipts earn points, and when enough points are added up, you cash out for gift cards.
There is a wide selection of gift cards to choose from like restaurants, entertainment, and retail shopping, and they are are good ones! I recently used my points for a $20 gift card to Chili’s – so I know this works! It does take awhile to earn points, but the app itself is super fast and easy – you just have to be consistent with uploading your receipts. Fetch Rewards is even easier than Ibotta – but while I like it, I appreciate that Ibotta gives you real cash. Fetch Rewards only rewards you gift cards.
TOP CASH BACK
TopCashBack is another great savings site where you earn cash back on things you buy online. Use this link to sign up for Top Cash Back – yes of course it’s free to sign up – (yes this is my referral link, so I thank you in advance for signing up! After you sign up, share your personal referral link and you can earn up to $10 every time someone signs up under you!)
Top Cash Back is a great site to use anytime you plan to shop online to save additional money on your purchase. You simply go to the TopCashBack site and then search for the retailer you plan to shop with. Then you start shopping and make your purchase. TopCashBack saves your shopping trip and gives you a percentage back once the sale is complete. It’s super easy and once you shopping trip is confirmed, you can cash out via gift cards, PayPal or direct deposit into your checking account!
I’ve made 2 purchases so far and find it to be easy and simple to use! So far, I’m really like it! Give TopCashBack a try and sign up today!
5. Use Paper Coupons
I am not an extreme couponer, but I strongly believe in the value of using coupons as much as you can for groceries, clothing, restaurants, movies, etc. Coupons are all over the place, you just have to start paying attention! I like to think of coupons as money – and honestly they really are!
I know that using coupons takes extra time and planning, but it’s totally worth it! Depending on where you live, some grocery stores even double the value of the coupon, which is awesome! There are a lot of places to find coupons, but one of the best places to start if you don’t have a newspaper subscription, is online – try using Coupons.com.
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Every month they update the coupons and they only allow a certain number of overall prints of a coupons before it disappears from the site. If this is your sole source of coupons, I recommend getting online at the very beginning of the month and printing out any coupons that you think you will use!
My local newspaper offers a limited printing of the Sunday paper that includes a smaller selection of the sales ads and the coupons, and all I had to do was ask! I’ve chosen in the last year to stop paying for my newspaper altogether and only get my FREE Sunday paper for the coupons. Check and see if your newspaper has something like this as well! It’s awesome because I don’t pay for the coupons! I know I don’t get all the coupons that would come in the paper if I had a paid subscription, but I’m pretty happy with FREE.
Mom, You Can Find Ways To Save Money!
Those are just a few ideas I have as easy ways for moms to save money. Use them to get you started with saving money and earning a few bucks along the way! Saving money when you have unexpected expenses can be a pain, but it is possible. Earning a few extra dollars when money is tight takes a little extra effort, but it is doable. For some great tips on how to start making money today, read my post 10 Easy Ways to Make Extra Money From Home.
Good luck momma! I know you can do it! I’d love to know how you saved or earned extra money this month, and give you a virtual high five! Hugs momma, you got this!