Let me cut to the chase – having children is friggin expensive, exhausting and draining as well as exciting and fulfilling. I know: I’ve had two and aged more in 20 years than I care to admit! As mothers the juggle of motherhood and money can be extremely challenging. Reduced income coming into the household, childcare fees and medical expenses combined with the rising cost of living means many of us live in a constant state of money stress. Add to that living in a world dominated by consumerism and instant gratification, it’s no wonder many mums are stuck in relentless cycle of being a slave to their money. If you are looking to jump off the treadmill and reclaim your money mojo I’ve got three ways to easily reduce your expenses.
Reduce Bad Debt
If you have a credit card that you are paying interest on identify the interest rate you are paying and find out current offers for lower interest rates or 0% on balance transfers. Before switching banks contact your current bank and see what they can offer you to reduce your current interest rate (some will give you a 3 month no interest period to help you pay it down). Make your bank work for your business: if they say they cannot give you a better deal, maybe it’s time to piss them off and go and find one from another provider – and let them know you are doing so. A little bit of legwork, which can usually be done via phone or internet, can pay off big time in terms of savings for you.
Negotiate and Avoid Penalties
Get a better deal with your utilities, telephone and various insurances. Contact your current providers and negotiate a discount or, move on, find a new provider that offers the same benefits at a lower cost and reclaim your mojo.
Find out if any of your providers offer a discount if you pay on time. If you just don’t have the cash to do this then talk to your providers about setting up weekly/fortnightly direct debit installment plans. This way you are not hit with a large bill and at risk of paying late penalty fees or using your credit card.
Identify reoccurring subscriptions, for example cable TV, music streaming, magazines and newspapers. If you are not fully utilizing these subscriptions (or can live without them) then unsubscribe. You’re not getting your money’s worth. If you want to maintain the service look at lowering the subscription level (if available) or negotiate with your provider for a lower rate.
Little tweaks here and there will lessen your financial load without impacting hugely on your quality of life. The more aware you are of where your money is going the more in control you will feel and less the anxiety will weigh.
Ultimately, your focus needs to be the gorgeous little terrors who just upended your glass of wine whilst running through the house despite the fact that you’ve told them ten times in the last ten minutes to stop (and f#*k knows you need that wine!).
Marisa Punshon is a Money Mentor and Cash Flow Consultant. She helps peope increase their cash and gain control of their finances so they can grow their personal wealth and do what they love to do. She is a Vision Partner for The Entourage, 2016 and a Mnd PT Consultant.