Staying home with your kids isn’t for everyone, but if being a stay at home mom is your dream then it can be your reality.
When I was pregnant with my daughter I thought I couldn’t afford to be a stay at home mom.
While this was unfortunately true, it wasn’t because it wasn’t possible. In the beginning I couldn’t afford to be a stay at home mom because I didn’t try hard enough to make it work.
At the time, I was working full time as a nanny and the wonderful family I was working for was going to let me bring my baby with me.
I considered this to be the next best thing, and for me it really was. I am forever thankful to the families I’ve worked for for letting me watch their children and let me bring mine along.
While I was blessed with that situation it still wasn’t my dream. It wasn’t what I truly wanted.
I wanted to be able to afford to be a stay at home mom, but I didn’t think it was possible.
I’m here today though to tell you that you can afford to be a stay at home mom. Your family can afford to live on one income so you can stay home with your babies.
It won’t be easy. Sacrifices will have to be made, but you can do it! Read the tips below to find out how.
How To Afford To Be A Stay At Home Mom
This post contains affiliate links. For more information, please read my disclosure here.
Set A Goal
So you want to be a stay at home mom but you just don’t know how you’ll make it work. The thought of trying to live on one income seems extremely overwhelming. Where do you start?
You start your journey to becoming a stay at home mom by setting a goal.
The thought of living on one income seems overwhelming because you don’t know how or how long you will have to do it.
How long do you want to be a stay at home mom?
Thinking of how you’ll survive for a few years might seem impossible but what if you broke it down in maybe one year or six month or maybe even just one month?
How much money do you need? What do you need to cut out? What do you need to do to be able to stay home with your baby for one month?
What you need to do is start small. Break this big goal of yours down into a small goal and see how you can make that work. Once you do that you’ll realize that the big goal doesn’t seem so unattainable.
Create A Budget
Depending on your families income situation you may need to cut back on your spending a little or a lot.
Start by writing down your monthly expenses and other spending:
Household (toothpaste, toilet paper, laundry detergent, etc.)
Now add that up and subtract that number from your one monthly income.
Knowing that exact number is very important. Knowing that number gives you a goal. You need to chip away at that number until it goes to zero or turns positive to be able to afford to be a stay at home mom. Read on for ways to do that.
Related Reading: What I Wish I Knew Before Giving Birth
Plan Ahead And Save Money
The sooner you start planning, the easier this is going to be. If you really want to be able to stay home with your baby you should start saving money now.
Even if all you can do is spare five dollars each month that’s five dollars that puts a dent in that number we’ve been talking about.
Little by little we’re going to make that number disappear.
Lets get that number even smaller with these tips below.
Can you lower your monthly expenses by downsizing?
Can you rent a cheaper apartment?
Can you trade your vehicle in for something cheaper to lower your monthly loan payment?
What can you sell?
The money you get from selling a few of your belongings might not seem like much but it might just buy you another month home with your baby.
All of these little things we are doing to scrap up change might not seem like a lot, but all together it’ll be enough for you to be a stay at home mom!
Have A Yard Sale
Go through all of your belongings and see what you can part with. Old clothes, tools, bikes, dishes, appliances, etc.
Sell your car
Would it be possible to eliminate one or both of your cars? Eliminating a car payment, auto insurance, and gas can knock off a huge chunk of your monthly expenses.
Sell your breastmilk
Did you know you can sell your breastmilk and make an extra $60 a day doing it? Check out this article here for more information.
Related Reading: What I Won’t Do With Baby Number Two
Ways To Save Money
Now that you’ve sold everything you can and possibly bought yourself a few weeks, maybe even a few months at home with your baby, lets talk about how you can save money so you can afford to be a stay at home mom.
If you are able to breastfeed you can save almost $2,000.00 on feeding your baby in their first year as oppose to formula feeding.
If you’re on the fence about breastfeeding please see my Ultimate Guide For Breastfeeding Success.
You can save a few hundred dollars on diapers by using reusable cloth diapers instead of disposables. This might not seem like a lot for one child but if you plan on having more and you can keep using the same diapers that number really starts to add up.
Use Ebates The Right Way
Ebates is a website that pays you cash back on your purchases. They can do this because companies pay them a commission for referring them customers and then Ebates shares that commission with you.
I have personally saved hundreds of dollars using Ebates.
Some people say they don’t shop online enough for Ebates to be worth it, but you definitely should be shopping online if you want to be a stay at home mom.
Don’t put miles on your car and pay money for gas to drive around picking up toothpaste, shampoo, laundry detergent etc when you can buy those items online and get cash back with Ebates.
Get a bonus $10 when you sign up for Ebates here.
Use Amazon Prime
If you take my advice and you start doing all of your shopping online you will definitely want to get an Amazon Prime account.
It may seem a little counterintuitive to add a monthly expense but I promise you you’ll save more with Amazon Prime.
Not only do you get free two day shipping but Amazon Prime members also get exclusive deals and coupons, not to mention 20% off diapers. It pays for itself and then some on top of the cash back you’ll get with Ebates.
Sign up and get your first 30 days free here.
Sometimes you have to spend money to save money.
Related Reading: Why I Regretted Our Gender Reveal Party
How To Save Money On Groceries
That numbers getting smaller and your dream of being able to afford to be a stay at home mom is coming true so let’s keep going!
Another monthly expense that has a lot of wiggle room is your food budget so let’s talk about how you can save money on your grocery bill.
Know What’s On Sale
Go online and check your grocery store’s circular to see what’s on sale for the week. Then base your grocery list off of that.
Plan Your Meals
Once I know what’s on sale I like to go on Pinterest and look up dinner recipes that need those on sale ingredients.
I make two lists, meals and groceries.
Once I write down a meal I go through the recipes and add the ingredients to my grocery list.
Try Generic Brands
Generic brands can be hit or miss. Some people actually prefer the taste of some generic brand foods to name brands.
Experiment with generic brand foods and see what you like because they can save you a lot on your grocery bill.
Do NOT waste food
Would you ever buy a bottle of shampoo, let it sit on a shelf in your bathroom, and then throw it in the trash a week later without using it?
No right? Because that would be crazy.
It’s really crazy to think we constantly walk into a grocery store and purchase food that we throw away a week or so later in our homes.
If you want to save money on your food budget you need to tackle food waste. Make it a priority to eat food before it goes bad.
How To Save Money On Your Utility Bills
Now it’s time to get really frugal and start saving money on your utility bills. Use these tips below to save hundreds.
Lower Your Thermostat
You will save hundreds of dollars on your heating cost by just lowering your thermostat a few degrees lower than normal.
If you can handle it, layer on the blankets and go even lower at night.
If you aren’t going to be home you can drop it down to 58 and save even more.
Use Ceiling Fans
Running your ceiling fan clockwise in the winter time for better circulation can save you money on your heating bill and running it counterclockwise during the summer can keep the house cooler.
Unplug Appliances That Aren’t In Use
Save money on your electric bill by unplugging any unused appliances. Phone chargers, computers, lamps and other appliances draw electricity even when you aren’t using them.
Only Use Lights When You Need Them
Get in the habit of turning lights off when you leave a room and you will see a significant impact on your electric bill.
Install Energy Saving Lights
Energy efficient bulbs may cost a little more but they use less energy and last a lot longer. They save you a ton of money in the long run.
Line Dry Clothes
Skip the dryer and line dry your clothes to save money on your electric bill.
Related Reading: The Rare Postpartum Complication I Wasn’t Ready For
How To Make Money And Still Keep Baby With You
If money is still tight don’t give up on your dream of being a stay at home mom. Try out these ways you can make money and keep your baby with you.
Do you have a spare bedroom? You could possibly rent that room out to a family member or close friends.
What about a a garage or shed? You can put an ad on Craigslist for storage space. People will pay you to rent out your space to use for storage.
Start A Mom Blog
I may be a little bias, but I think this is the smartest way moms can make money from home.
Starting a mom blog was one of the best financial decisions I have ever made in my life.
Anyone can make a full income from blogging if they put in the time and the effort.
Plus it’s REALLY fun.
Learn more about how you can make money with a mom blog here.
A lot of women are able to stay home with their kids by starting in home daycares. It’s a really fun job for the right person and your children get friends to play with.
- Setting a goal of how long you’ll need to be a stay at home mom can make figuring everything out less scary. Then if you can figure out how you’ll do it for one month you can work on six months and a year.
- Create a budget and figure out what you’re lacking. That number is your goal and now you can find ways to chip away at it.
- Utilizes the methods and tips in this post to make and save money so you can afford to be a stay at home mom.