When it comes to family finances, it can sometimes be hard to keep our eye on the ball. No matter how much we try sometimes, little things will slip in that we don’t necessarily need or we will have an unexpected expense that throws things up in the air a little.
Over the last 6 months our family finances seem to be tighter than ever and this summer our annual holiday is currently non existent so we are going readdress our family finances and make some changes.
Set a budget
The easiest and quickest way to mess up your family finances is by not having a budget set in place. It doesn’t need to be super strict; not every penny automatically needs to be accounted for although that does work for some. A simple budget should do – as long as all bills are paid, then you can budget the rest of the money as necessary. Just make sure to keep an eye on any ‘unnecessary’ spending so you don’t end up in the same situation. This is how we have gotten into a mess, overspending the unnecessary so we now need to re-budget to regain control.
A great way to free up some more money in the family money pot is to meal plan. Knowing what you are eating and when makes it much cheaper to do the weekly shop – you are far less tempted to pick up items you don’t need as you already know exactly what items you require. Remember, leftovers are great too – if you’re making a roast chicken and have some chicken left over, that will be great in a salad for lunch the next day!
Bring in some extra cash
This may sound easier said than done for some people but there are many ways you can bring some extra cash into the household. You could take on overtime at work or even consider getting a second job – as long as it doesn’t affect your family life too much in the long term – the short term gains are only worth it if it doesn’t affect other parts of your life.
Decluttering is always a good thing to do as you will often come across items you no longer want or need. Stick them up on selling sites and get a much needed cash boost in your family finances.
Depending upon your own circumstances and if you own your own home there may have been a drastic increase in its worth over the years too. I found this calculator that shows how much the property has increased in value HERE.
Get rid of unnecessary expenditure
This could technically come under setting a budget but different members of the family will have different things they spend their money on. A husband may have a gym membership, a wife a monthly outing with friends, the children may have some clubs they attend. You’ll often find that people will be willing to give up some of their social activities in order to be more financially free again. That isn’t to say that everyone needs to give up everything or even anything at all – sitting down and working out how much these activities cost is the key and adjusting your finances to suit this.
Recently we made some big changes with our energy suppliers and our car insurances by switching providers. No matter what utilities your household has by searching around you can often save hundreds each year to ensure the money stays in your pocket not theirs!
How do you deal with your family finances?