Life as a single parent can be difficult at the best of times, without the additional restraints and pressures of the government’s latest initiatives, making difficult times even harder with changes in policies about family benefits and tax credits. This could end up leaving you at a loss, or with less spare cash to take the family out for special treats. However, tightening the purse strings doesn’t need to be such a laborious task. Follow these useful hints and tips and your family can enjoy spending quality time together without the hefty price tag, remember, fun doesn’t need to be so expensive.
Shop and save online
There are many ways that you can save money by simply shopping online, Coupons and loyalty schemes are the obvious ways, with many online retailers keen to offer discounts. You can also expand on these discounts if you have a little patience. Filling your online basket and then abandoning it at the checkout, will usually initiate a reminder e-mail with further discounts. This process isn’t full proof and can sometimes take longer than expected but if you stand firm you should get the results you want. Other items are just cheaper online, for instance cheap glasses and cheap contact lenses can be bought once you have your prescription from your optician; online retailers don’t have the steep prices of paying for premises so they can offer much cheaper prices on the very same products.
Make do and mend it
Stitching and sewing, gluing and D.I.Y are not only great things to learn but also fantastic things to get the kids involved with. Cobble those shoes and plumb those pipes, using You Tube videos and forums you can often find the solution to pesky problems that are easily solved once you know how. Calling out a skilled tradesman might be convenient but it’s not always necessary, although you should avoid tackling anything which could potentially be dangerous. Painting your own walls is one thing, but attempting to re-wire the house should only be done by certified professionals. You can also find great ideas for home-made remedies and cleaners using a whole bunch of things that you’ll have in your kitchen cupboards, baking powder and white vinegar prove especially useful for getting rid of those stubborn stains and freshening up any annoying odors. Sites such as My Home Remedies offer great tips and advice for all sorts of cleaners and cleansers.
Re-use and recycle
Freecycle is a fantastic site which gives you free things for you and your family. You’ll be amazed at what you can find, as the old adage goes: one man’s rubbish is another man’s treasure. A little maintenance maybe needed, and you may even need to collect your items, but with the ability to focus your search to local areas or by postcode, you can ensure that you only get results from local items being offered. Hand crafted can be great fun and engaging for the whole family – make your own birthday cards and gifts, there are some superb blogs giving ideas to turn regular household waste into give great ideas. Homemade crafts will save you money and also give you hours of fun filled engaging activities with your children.
Using these tips you can save and give your family the best possible opportunities, money saving doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom, it can be fun and made into something the whole family can become involved in.
Adam Wray is a keen blogger and frugal father of one.