10 Expenses That Can Be Cut If You Become A SAHM or SAHD

So you want to stay home with your children. That is a great choice to make. Even if you are not planning to stay home with your baby and just want some great cost saving tips that is OK too. The economy has been difficult for nearly everyone. Cutting expenses is a huge subject.  It is so huge that I decided to discuss a bit at a time.
Learn ways to cut costs so that you can be a SAHM or SAHD
 Did you get your list or spreadsheet made as we discussed in the post last Thursday?  Was it eye opening for you? Did you see some places that you can cut immediately simply by staying home?  Let me point a few out for you. Keep in mind that these are only the highlights.
  1. Child Care: If you are paying for childcare then you know this is a big ticket item.
  2. Clothing: You will no longer have to dress in professional clothing and so this is a place where you can cut back. You will be able to dress casually.  You may even be able to sell some of those work clothes to help pay for something or to pad your checking account with.
  3. Gas: to and from work each day will be less (or subway, train, or bus fare if in a large city).
  4. Eating Out: will be less. You will be home now and so part of your job will be to cook at home.  It is so much less expensive to eat at home. You can cook an entire meal for a family of 6 or 8 for the price of a Big Mac Meal for 1. Many times we start eating out more because we have less time or we are too tired to shop and cook.  Having a great meal on the table when your husband or wife gets home will be one of the big benefits they will love. (It definitely convinced my husband that he liked me at home). Anyone can learn to cook. I share some of my easy family pleasing recipes on Wednesdays.
  5. Snacks: Most people buy snacks on the go at quick stops, drive thrus, etc. because they are on the run. When you are home you can make your own snacks from real groceries which will cost much less. Think about this just in the Coke area.  You can get 12 packs of Coke 3 for $10 if you watch the sales. That is less than 28¢ a can. How much do you pay for a coke at the quick stop or drive thru? I think I pay about $1.29 There are huge savings that can be realized in this area. How much better is home baked cookies compared to store bought? Again, anyone can learn to cook. You can learn to do anything for free on the internet.
  6. Groceries: This can be cut by meal planning, buying on sale, couponing, and even refunding. Coupons and refunds can be a huge time suck so look at this carefully before you plan to go all in with this one. I will discuss this more in depth on another post. You can also save time, money, and gas by ordering some of these at Amazon. Things like toilet paper, paper towels, or certain foods you know you are going to use regularly you can have a set order that ships every month at a certain time and it is free shipping plus the prices are 5% - 20% off their already great prices. This is another area where huge savings can happen just by planning a menu and not over buying. There are other ways of saving big in this area that I will share in upcoming posts.
  7. Vehicle Expenses: There will be less vehicle expense because of less wear and tear and less miles put on your vehicle.  This means your vehicle and tires will last longer with less repairs.
  8. Personal Care Expenses: This can be cut easily by doing your own manicures/pedicures. Look at the other expenses in this area and decide if they are absolutely necessary. Maybe you can learn to cut your husband's and/or little boy's hair. Are there other items in this area that can be cut back such as spa, massages, expensive makeup or hair products. There are tons of recipes for making your own beauty products that don't have all the questionable ingredients that can really save you money and your health.
  9. Entertainment: This is an area where you can possibly cut back. Rent a movie instead of going out to one. Our family chose to cut this area and we kept our cable T.V. but without all the expensive channels so that we would have a nice choice of watching entertainment but still cut expenses. This helped us to not miss going to movie theaters or expensive concerts, sport events, etc. Netflix, and Hulu are also great options rather than Cable or Dish for only $7 or $8 a month. Then you can cut your cable completely. You can still get news, weather and sports online.
  10. Travel: This is another easy area to cut back in. Our family chose to travel less and we learned to travel on a budget when we did travel.  We planned trips to see family rather than staying at expensive hotels, we packed our own snacks and lunches along the way. Some of our favorite memories are when we stopped along the way at certain picnic areas for a sandwich. There are lots of activities that are low cost and even free that can also slash costs in this area. You can camp instead of expensive motels. Staycations are great ways to cut expenses. This is where you find things to explore and enjoy close to home. There are also ways to save up for when you do want to go somewhere awesome. The point is not to charge it and not to take it out of your everyday budget.
Here are 10 areas where expenses can be cut just off the top of my head.  In future posts, I will give you many more money saving tips that can cut your expenses even more in these areas as well as others.  There are ways to be a Stay At home Mom or Dad. You just have to want it enough to be willing to make the sacrifices by cutting expenses. If you are looking for ways to slash your budget for other reasons then these are possibly great places to start.
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ProbablyCrafting said...

Great ideas. I have wanted to stay at home since my first was born but I guess I can't complain about 4 hours a day :)

Debra Howard said...

If it makes you happy to stay at home there might be ways to do it but if you are happy with 4 hrs a day then that is cool too. All of us have different circumstances and therefore different but valid decisions.

Michelle said...

You have included some really great advice!

Debra Howard said...

Thank you Michelle. I hope I can help some people who want to be a stay at home parent but just aren't convinced they can do it. Hopefully they can see some things they might not have considered

Anna said...

I'm a SAHM and I have to agree with all these. Great advice! I wish more people would look at money like this. They don't realize that staying home can save them way more money than they think.

Debra Howard said...

I found that the lifestyle of being a SAHM was wonderful although it had it's down moments. I don't regret it. Money always came when we needed it somehow.