Raising a family and making money is no mean feat. Kids, especially younger kids, are a massive drain on time and energy, not to mention expensive.
But there are some moms out there who just take it in their stride. Recently, a major banking company asked top female entrepreneurs and professionals about how they both saved and made their money. Here’s what they had to say.
Keep Your Money Growing
Cheryl Fields, a financial planner and the founder of a wealth management company says that women should avoid falling into the trap of spending money like mad on day-to-day expenses. The focus instead should be on building up significant savings for retirement. Keep your eye on the prize, she says, by growing your money tax-free and without restrictions. Make sure that you build so much wealth, she continues, that you have plenty to pass on to your children in years to come.
Fields also suggests a number of ways that moms can keep their pots of money growing, even if the stock market or the economy goes bust. She says moms need to look out for investments that have low market risk – like government bonds – and also investments that won’t be eaten away by rising taxes in the future.
Become A Work At Home Mom
For many parents, simply cutting expenses at home isn’t enough to make ends meet. Often, when parents take time off work to look after children, they need to find additional sources of income to keep their standard of living high. According to Gaby Merediz, owner of a Tmuffin, a type of kids play space and an online community for moms, parents should reach out to the world of crowdsourcing to make a living. Crowdsourcing, she says, often have lots of projects available for moms to do at home that earn them money to boot.
For instance, she points out that many sites, like Crowdsource and Textbroker, offer writing work that moms can take on, with the payment for each project ranging from $5 to $50 per piece. This allows moms to stay at home while providing extra income for the kids.
Buy Last Year’s Model
Erica Harriss is the founder of Saving Grace Beauty, a beauty company dedicated to reducing the cost of hair care. She says that the best way that moms can save money is to use last year’s model for anything that they buy. Specifically, she’s talking about last year’s clothes and fashion, but her advice could apply to anything, including computers and kid’s bikes.
When it comes to clothing, she says that she’s saved a fortune by buying older lines. This year’s tennis shoes retail for over $160, Harriss explains. But she managed to save around 40 percent on the price because she waited for new lines to release before her purchase.
Get A Side Job
Side jobs, like work-from-home jobs, are an excellent way to make a little extra money when you’re in a bind. According to Heather Stephens, manager of the FatWallet blog, moms should look at the capital that they have and then try to make money using it.
For instance, she says, if you’ve got a car, then leverage your asset and go and pick people up. You could do this through Uber, or you could organize it through your own community, ferrying the elderly to and from the day center. If you’ve got a computer, Stephens suggests that you do something like becoming a graphic designer or a virtual assistant. Right now many companies are hiring women who can offer reception-like services over the internet, talking to their customers and resolving any problems they are having with their products.
Stephens continues: if you like the outdoors, she says, then look for activities that indulge this hobby. You can make money as a tour guide for hikers, fishermen, boy scouts and campers.
Making money and doing things independently can seem overwhelming, but the opportunities are out there, just waiting to be had.
Take Time For Your Own Projects
Carry Olsen says that the only way that moms can turn their money making plans into reality is to make time for themselves. If you have taken out online installment loans to start a business, then you need to plan out your time so that you have enough of it to complete your projects.
Make sure you plan your week every Sunday evening, Olsen says, and block off time you need to work on your project. There are plenty of apps, she says, that can help moms with organizing their time if they find this difficult. These apps help you to keep on track.
Stick With Sack Lunches
Cynthia Bailey is the CEO of a skin care company and has many children of her own. She is a big fan of the sack lunch and has been implementing it since her kids, who are now grown, were young. The secret, she says, is to make sure that your pantry stays packed with lots of foods and treats that your children can look forward to.
Not only was this a way for her to keep her household expenditures low, but it was also a way to teach her children a valuable life lesson. Sack lunches have taught her kids that it is possible to live well and healthily on a tight budget. Even though they have them in their 20s, they still have pride that they are able to cook their own dinners and organize their own lunches. All of her children, she says, recognize how expensive food can be and how most food that’s bought out of the home is unhealthy. Her kids are slim and resourceful in the kitchen.
Ellie Hirsch is the founder of a parenting website that helps moms to get better at what they do and have a happier family life. Her advice to moms is to begin carpooling. Driving every morning and afternoon to do the groceries and pick the kids up from school wastes a lot of gas, she says. So she recommends that moms find a group of parents who are interested in carpooling so they can share lifts to school. Not only will this create more time for busy moms, but it can also be fun for the kids who get to chat with their friends on the way to school.
Buy Life Insurance
Keisha Blair, the founder of Aspire Canada, says that the most important decision her family ever made was to buy life insurance. Blair’s husband died when she was just 31 years old, but because she had paid $20 a month on life insurance, she got a massive payout that saved her life. The payout allowed her to look after her two young sons and also a third one that was on the way just a few weeks later. Emergencies can happen to anybody, she says, and so it is important to take the necessary steps to protect yourself.
Always Accept Hand-Me-Downs
Lori McDaniel is a senior content manager and mother of two. Her advice is to always accept anything that you are offered. Hand-me-downs, she says, can save families a fortune, especially if it is for things like furniture or school books. Things like toys and clothing are also expensive, so if you can get second-hand jackets and coats, this can also save you a fortune, especially in the winter. She also points out that anything that you don’t want you can put on eBay or sold to a friend.