Ahhh financial responsibility. Mine did not really come to reality until we got pregnant with Vincent and I realized that spending my entire paycheck on myself was not going to fly. Here we are 6 years later and 4 boys deep and our finances are a huge priority and making sure that they are in line is very important for us and our childrens future.
When I met Jordan I worked 3 jobs and loved the freedom of all those paychecks. I had some college loans and was only paying the bare minimum so I could have the freedom to buy clothes and whatever else my 22 year old self thought I needed. Seriously I would just spend to spend. I never really understood why it was important to get ahead and save money.
4 babies later and my entire mindset has changed. While I do love getting nice things I would much rather put money towards my children and their future. There are things that we do spend more money on such as food and health items to stay as healthy as possible and feed our bodies well. We cancelled cable since honestly the Real Housewives were not worth a $100 a month. It was seriously the only show I would watch. I mean when you add that up we were spending over $1000 a year for television! So frivolous. Just cutting small things out of your monthly budget can add a whole lot of budge room to your finances. We also switched to a much cheaper cell phone carrier and are paying HALF of what we used to. That is HUGE!
Go through your budget and see exactly WHAT you are spending money on. Break down each item and be realistic about ways to maje that bill smaller. Obviously I am not saying to cut your electricity and heat but maybe you get your hair cut every month. Could you do it every other instead? Or maybe instead of tajing your boys to get haircuts could you do them yourself. I have honestly done every single one of the boys haircuts. It not only saves time and money it saves me some sanity! haha! Do you spend a lot of money going out to eat? How about choosing to make your own meals? We rarely go out to eat because we came to a point where we realized we were paying more money for less quality food where we could make it at home and have it be organic. There are ALWAYS ways to cut your bills you just have to sit down and be realistic.
So chat with your spouse or partner and make a plan of action.
Another idea to try is to use a cash system. We have tried this before and it helps a ton. Jordan will give me a wad of money at the start of the month and every time I spend I use the money from my fund and it's MUCH different than just swiping a card. You actually have to feel the money leave your wallet and you see the dollar bills going away. It stings a lot more than just swiping a card. It makes me really consider my purchases and think if I really need the item or not!
For the holidays you would think we would spend a fortune on gifts for our families and our children. We are honestly the complete opposite. I have NOTHING to get the children. They cannot even think of anything they want. Last year we got them one toy each and we want to do that again but they have nothing that they even want. We have discussed maybe taking them to a hotel or something and swimming. Children just want to spend quality time with people. We are hoping to teach them that gifts are not what matter. It is the people around you and the moments and memories you can make.
On Vincent's first Christmas and Birthday we had LONG lists of presents and piles of gifts and guess what. He did not even care. This last birthday we did for ALL of the boys this summer we asked for no gifts to be given and they did not even bat an eye. They just had FUN with their friends and family at their party. It also helps your long term finances when you aren't spending money on silly toys that your children will play with for a week then forget.
These are just a few of the things we do as a young family with 4 children.
Capital One 360 is having an amazing Black Friday Sale to help get your finances in order. So try what I said and make a list. Go through all your bills and try to focus on things you REALLY need.
I hope you all had the best Turkey Day celebrations. While you may have gifts, greetings and get-togethers on the brain, it's important not to lose sight of your financial goals. All of Capital One 360's Black Friday Sale deals are designed to encourage consumers to keep their finances top of mind.
Just to see a quick break down of the amazing deals here they are....
|ShareBuilder||Up to $1,250 bonus (tiered offer)|
|Home Loans||$1,250 off closing costs|
|360 Checking||$100 bonus|
|360 Savings||$100 bonus|
|Refer a Friend||$40 bonus per successful referral|
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.