Tuesday, December 15th, 2015
The following tips have been researched and selected to help you recognise the benefits of saving money. As well as this, they are easy to follow and can be adapted immediately. These tips are ideally for but not limited to single parents.
If you can book or plan things in advance, you will have longer to save money and pay for it. You may also get a discount for booking early.
Look out for free things for kids to do during holidays and half-term provided by your local authority and not-for-profit organisations.
Hold ?pot luck? suppers with friends, rent a film and make your own popcorn.
Enjoy your family. We?re lucky to have them. Kids want us and our time more than things and money!
Always take snacks and drinks with you. Multipacks bought in supermarkets are always cheaper than individual items in small shops. Fill up old drinks bottles with squash for when you are out.
Do free activities with children: collect things you recycle such as yoghurt pots and cardboard tubes into a craft box for rainy days, or to make birthday cards and presents for family.
Go for a walk in the park with a picnic, away from shops. The kids love the attention you lavish on them. They will have fond memories of their childhood and know that you can have fun without spending money.
Volunteer as a way of filling time and meeting people without spending money.
Hold a clothes-swapping party with friends once or twice a year.
Mend and be creative. Be proud of managing on the minimum amount of money and never be ashamed of what you can?t afford. Bring up your children to think the same way.
Buy food in bulk when you can and plan meals ahead to avoid waste. Batch cook and freeze meals ? great if you?re a busy parent.
Look out for cheaper cuts of meat, supermarket offers and fruit and vegetables that are in season.
Never throw any food away. Have an ?eating up? day each week ? vegetables that are a bit past their best can still be used in soups and casseroles.
Only go to the supermarket when you need to. If you can make a meal with what is in your cupboards then you don?t need to go!
Find out when your local supermarket discounts their food for quick sale. Chilled food can be less than half price.
Buy food shopping online as it takes away the temptation of throwing extras into your shopping basket and you can keep an eye on how much you are spending.
Debt, banking and saving
It?s no use trying to avoid money problems by not seeing it in black and white. Always open bills, bank statements, etc., so you know what?s happening. If you?re struggling to pay bills go to your local free advice centre for help.
Don?t ignore your debts ? it?s surprising how helpful companies will be if you talk to them early.
Stay in control of your life. Keep in contact with lenders and don?t stick your head in the sand. Shop around, get advice and stay sane! Also remember your rights and take responsibility for your situation but don?t be bullied.
Always have a savings account as you never know when you will need that money in the future. A little goes a long way, even if it is just a £1 a week.
Have a savings goal; a reason why you are saving. This makes it worthwhile and helps motivate you.
Get your kids involved in managing money. If you give them pocket money, let them earn it and hopefully they will understand its value from an early age.