Penny-Pinching: Mom's Guide to Saving and Making Money Daily
I am one of those moms that has tried just about everything in the book to save money and make it. There are a lot of scams out there that will snatch up your money in a heartbeat, all while offering riches for little to no work. The problem is that making any kind of money does require some work. Even saving money requires mental work!
Everything that you are about to read, I have tried myself and will give you my personal opinion on how well it worked for me. I am going to be telling you about the things that did work for me in hopes that you too can find something that works well for you!
Be Creative With It!
There is an abundance of ways to pinch those pennies and make an extra buck here and there. Sometimes, you just have to get creative with it! Whether it be a busy schedule, work, your children, or you feel that you just don't have time to really add any more of a load; there are ways that can work for you.
I work fifty hours a week, have two children who are with me full time, and I am pregnant. I simply was not making enough money but how could I possibly work more hours than I already was? I couldn't, without sacrificing what time I did get with my children, which was already limited!
So I set to googling ways to make our situation a little more comfortable. Here are some ideas that I tried, that work:
- Pinching Pennies. Literally. If you see a penny on the ground, pick it up! If you see a dime, nickel, or quarter, even better! Keep saving all of that lose change instead of tossing it or telling the cashier to keep it. On average since I really started picking up change and saving it, I have saved around $7 a week doing just this. It may not seem like a lot, but It is passive money that you are accumulating. Depending on where you work or how often you go out, you may be able to accumulate more than that a week! Every two months I cash in my change and I usually have about $60. So $30 a month just pinching coins.
Yard sales are a good way to pull in some really good cash if they are properly planned and put together. Keep in mind that it takes more time and work than the other options I have listed!
- Selling Old Things. Now this one I'm not completely crazy about because I don't like running around and meeting up with people to purchase stuff from me. I do however, like to sell stuff on consignment at shops and to clothing stores like Plato's Closet. Plato's Closet will purchase new and used clothes and shoes that are in fashion and in season. Consignment shops will usually do a 60%/40% deal with you, where they keep 60% of the money if the item sells and you get the rest. I like this because I can stop by the consignment shop when I'm on that side of town, usually once a month, and pick up any cash I made from my items that they sold for me! Plato's buys on the spot, usually within just a few hours of you dropping off your items. They pay a fair price, so it's a good way to make some extra cash while your in town without having to run all over the place to do it.
If you have a smartphone, research coupon/money saving apps that are free to use. What better way to save money than to open your phone and find a coupon for the lunch you want, or for 20% of your favorite store? Retail-me-not is a good one that I recommend!
Coupons & Sales!
- Coupons, Coupons, and More Coupons. If you can find a coupon for it, then I highly recommend clipping that baby and using it! Even if it is only 50 cents off one item at checkout, that money will still add up over a months time. Personally, I like printing coupons more than I like purchasing the Sunday paper. It really just depends what kind of coupons that the paper has in it that day though. If you combine coupons with sales, even better! I usually save around $50 a month just from clipping coupons in my spare time! It does not take a lot of time to quickly look up to see if an item has a coupon for it or not before you buy it. It is easy for on-the-go moms to use apps for coupons as well. If your a target shopper, download the cartwheel app and sign up for their red card. You will save 5% off your purchase every time you use your card & cartwheel has coins off the dollar on hundreds of items daily that you purchase! All scan-able from your phone at checkout!
- Sales! I generally do not grocery shop unless I know there is going to be a sale that day. This is also a great time to use those coupon skills! Winn-Dixie stores are known for their BOGO (buy-one-get-one) sales, and they also double coupons up to 50 cents and have fuel perks! So not only do you get money off from the sale, but also the coupon, and you get money off of your next fill up on gas if you have their Winn-Dixie card for fuel perks! Its a win-win all the way around. My biggest trip where I saved the most I had to slightly pre-plan for, but it wasn't any more work that just making a grocery list and looking at the sales paper! I just used my coupons and combined it with the sales and ta-da! I saved a whooping total of $290 during that trip, spent $85, and then saved another $4 off of gas later that day.
If you are planning on crafting items to sell, then try to buy your materials on sale. Using coupons for these things and catching them at a sale price can increase the profit that you can make off of your items! Joanne's Fabric Store and Micheal's Craft Store both tend to have great coupons and sales.
- Blogging. Now writing does take a little more time than the other options, but has the potential to pull in a passive income if you are good at it. It is easy to do when you have some downtime, when the kids go to bed, while they are in school, etc... It's not hard to do and the amount you make really depends on the amount of time you can and want to put into writing! If you search though, there are some freelancing sites that will pay you per article that you post. Most sites will pay you per click on your article. Even if it's only a few cents, if you get hundreds of views it all adds up, especially if you write a lot!
- Driving for Uber. Now this one I'm still learning about. I have signed up but I haven't actually started it yet, mainly because I am pregnant, and partly because I usually have my toddler with me all of the time. The great thing about Uber that I have seen so far is that you can turn the app on and off at your wish, making yourself available only when you want to be to offer rides. After a short grace period of being with them (I think its three weeks), automatic withdraw to your card becomes available. So if you take someone on a ride you instantly can get paid and have access to that money! A lot of moms with children in school have raved about Uber driving, saying that they pick up a few passengers while running errands in town and are able to make some decent cash in the process!
- Putting Your Skills To Use. Like photography? Know how to knit an awesome blanket? Are you excellent with children? Offer your skills online and to others for a price! If you are crafty you can easily come up with a fair price for your items and sell them as you make them. If you like photography you can market your services and offer lower prices to people you know to make some quick extra cash. Think of what you are good at and see if you cant sell your skills!
Start Saving Money Today!
I hope that you found some of these ideas as helpful as I have. It isn't hard to get started, you just have to put your mind to it and remind yourself daily. Be sure to make trips to consignment shops or sales while you already have to be out, to save on your gas. Try to combine everything that you have to do in town into one day or on your way home from work so that you don't make unnecessary trips out. And don't forget to pick up that change and start a piggy bank to help build your funds! You'll be amazed at how much you can save!