Single parents usually suffer the consequences of a limited income and high expenses. At that point, saving the most on services, goods and entertainment is very important because other more important expenses like health insurance, mortgage payments or rent usually consume most of the household income. Following are some tips on how to stretch that budget and save money so single parents can live with more ease.
Take Advantage Of Your Situation
Many Institutions that provide services (especially educational services) have special consideration towards single parents and provide discounts or aid to those who need them. Therefore, do not hesitate on letting the authorities know that you are a single parent struggling to make ends meet. You deserve to obtain help from those who make decisions and should not be ashamed of taking advantage of this because doing so is just making an unfair situation fair.
Make Use of Discounts and Coupons
On newspapers, magazines, on the net, and many other media, you will find plenty of offers that you usually ignore. It is a good idea to take note of them or set them aside in categories so when you need them you can access them quickly. When people overpay, is usually because they do not have enough time to shop around for better offers so being prepared can save you a lot of money.
Cut Down on Your Household Expenses
There are ways to save energy and thus money by sealing your home windows and doors properly so both the heat and the cold air from air conditioners are not wasted. If you have cable television, you can limit the service to the basic channels without adding premium services. Shop around for internet service providers as it is a very competitive market and you could get very good offers just by doing some research before closing on a deal with a particular provider.
Carry A Budget And Buy Items In Bulk
It is important to carry a budget. We usually suggest carrying a monthly budget and a long term budget too. This will make it easier to purchase items in bulk (i.e. a box of 50 toilet papers or paper napkins). With a long term budget you can set aside money every month for this kind of purchases that can save you hundreds of dollars and sometimes thousands each year. Another good idea is to carry a stock list as well so you do not run out of any item and avoid being forced to purchase them individually.
Save on Car Expenses
Try to use public transportation whenever possible. Leave your car at home at least one day of the week. When purchasing your car or changing it, look for one that consumes less gasoline and has less expensive spare parts. There are many online sites providing comparisons with this information. If at all possible buy regular gasoline instead of premium or special ones because it is a lot cheaper (chances are that if you have an inexpensive car, buying special gasoline will not be necessary).