Money saving tips for stay at home moms

Everything seems to be costing more money these days! Gasoline, groceries, household necessities, health and beauty aids, health care---the list goes on and on! Being a Stay At Home Mom, you may be feeling the squeeze of the present economy even more than most people with a two-income family. You're willing to make sacrifices in order to stay at home with your kids, and want to find more ways of pinching pennies.

Luckily, there are many, many ways you can save money! Her are a few tips and ideas:

  • Clip coupons! Magazines, newspaper inserts, manufacturer websites, online websites such as Coupons. Com are all sources of valuable coupons.
  • Trade coupons with friends. Start a "Round Robin" and swap the coupons you won't use for one that you need.
  • Price Match! Walmart will meet any local advertised price for an identical item. Price matching instead of running around to several different stores will save gas and time.
  • Buy It Used: Shop thrift stores, garage and yard sale, consignment stores, "wee swaps" and similar places for great bargains on clothing.
  • Consign Your Clothing: Take your own and your children's used clothing to a local consignment shop. They will sell it and give you a percentage of whatever it brings.
  • Barter: There are usually local newsletters or magazines published that have a section for bartering goods or services. If you need your kitchen sink drain replaced, for example, look to barter something with a plumber. You might have something sitting around out in the garage or packed away, like a set of skis or golf clubs, that a plumber will trade his services for. This way, you get the work done on your sink without an outlay of cash.
  • Freecycle: These have sprung up from coast to coast. To find one in your area, simply Google "freecycle" and the name of your town or city. People post their unwanted or unneeded items on there. No charge, but you will usually need to pick up the item. Furniture, baby items, appliances, vehicles, building materials---you name it! If you need something and it isn't in the budget, do check out Freecycle.
  • Craigslist: Another one that has spread like wildfire all over the country! Craigslist is a free service where people post any and everything. It's a great place to sell your unwanted things and outgrown clothing, and a great place to buy things that you need! Do a Google search for "Craig list" and the name of your city to find what is available near you.
  • Co-Op: Many people are getting together and forming buying cooperatives for groceries, for example. The prices are much cheaper because the items are bought in bulk quantities. You might want to talk to your friends and family or neighbors to see if you can get a co-op started.
  • U-Pick: In areas where farming is a primary industry, you can often have whatever you can pick in the field after the main crop is machine harvested. Many times, the farmer is happy to let someone in to harvest the remaining fruits or vegetables, rather than seeing them go to waste.
  • Vacation Deals: A lot of nice vacations can be had for the entire family either free or very reasonably, just by agreeing to watch a sales demo or go on a little sales tour of the property while you're there.
There are a lot of other ways to shave expenses! Be creative! Living frugally and seeing how much money you can save by using a little imagination is not only wise, it's fun!