Last Updated on October 24, 2023 by Lori Pace
Time flies and most of us tend to procrastinate when dieting, saving, and spending less on clothes. It’s also tougher to save on the income of a single mom, as it feels as if there’s never enough money to take care of things.
I’ve been a single mom myself, and I know firsthand that there’s always room for improvement in managing finances. In this article, I’ll share some practical tips I’ve learned over the years to make the most of your income as a single mom in 2023. These insights are based on my real-life experience and have helped me achieve financial stability.
Keep track of your spending and budget.
You might be reading this and thinking, “Well, that’s easier said than done.” And you’re right; it is easier said than done.
But, it does get easier. It just takes practice and some advice, of course. One of the best ways to curb spending when shopping is to ask yourself, “Do I need this or do I want this?”
Do you really want to spend your hard-earned income on things that might only make you happy for a short while?
Once you get into the habit of it, you’ll be surprised at how much easier it will be to keep track of spending habits and save money.
Budgeting apps to help you plan your budget and track your spending:
This app allows you to use your banking info to help you pay off any debt that may be wearing you down.
This app helps to ensure that you haven’t forgotten about any subscriptions to Hulu or iTunes. It’s a 100% free app that’s quite handy – it will reduce or even cancel the bills on your behalf.
Start saving for a rainy day.
As one of the many single moms out there, there are many unexpected challenges that you could face. Your child can suddenly become sick. You or someone you love can be involved in an accident, or, heaven forbid, you can lose your job.
Any of these disasters would take their toll on anyone who isn’t financially prepared. One crucial aspect of financial security as a single mom is preparing for unexpected challenges. Having been through such situations myself, I can’t stress enough how vital it is to save for a rainy day. Financial experts often recommend setting aside at least three months’ worth of your income for emergencies. In this section, I’ll explain not only why it’s essential but also practical steps to achieve this financial safety net, drawing from my personal journey.
Perhaps you’re wondering, how can I afford to save for a rainy day?
The question is, rather, how can you afford not to save for a rainy day?
Aside from the obvious practical reason, there is also the emotional benefit. You will have peace of mind knowing that you have money that’s ready to use right when you need it.
Think of it as paying yourself and putting aside some cash before any spending. It would be a good idea to set up a separate savings account.
Get rid of debt on a single mom’s income.
This one should be a no-brainer – no one likes or wants debt.
There’s also the added benefit of improving your credit score, which will give you more options for the future. You could qualify for that car loan to get a better car. Maybe qualify for a home loan a business loan, or a student loan.
Firstly, sit down and figure out how much you owe. Secondly, keep track of where or to whom you owe money. (Maybe get rid of any debt that you share with your ex or anyone else, really.) Thirdly, make sure your single mom’s income is sufficient, maybe consider working online.
Finally, if you have debt that you can’t get rid of quickly, it’s best to set up a payment plan and stick to it.
Become a finance mentor to your kids
We all wish our kids would do as we say and not as we do. Even our own moms tried in vain to teach us this – but we know our kids are best taught by example instead of words.
One of the best ways to teach your children is to get them involved. Talk to them openly and honestly about the importance of money and how it’s needed for security when life happens.
When kids are little, they are visual learners, so try to give them their allowance in physical cash or consider opening a bank account with debit cards for kids to manage money responsibly.
For example, you can give a small allowance once a week as a reward for chores done around the house, such as tidying up their room, taking out the trash, and so on.
Another great way to involve your children in the family finances is to set a family money goal that could be fun for everyone. A great family money goal would be going out ice skating or a trip to Disney World.
Everyone in the family chips in and works towards the goal by finding ways to save money and selling things that they no longer use.
Choosing something that gets your kids excited can teach them to be excited about saving money.
Start investing your single mom’s income.
So you’ve started saving money, now what’s the next step? Investing.
There’s no point in leaving all the savings you’ve scraped together in just an ordinary, low-earning savings or checking account. Your savings will stay still while your living costs will keep getting more and more.
Like many single moms, I once believed I had no clue about investing. But here’s the truth: I’ve been in your shoes. I understand the apprehension and the limited time we have to learn about financial matters. Rest assured, I’ve embarked on this journey myself, and I’m here to guide you based on my own experiences and what I’ve learned along the way. And you probably don’t have the time to learn. But trust me, even the Wall Street corporate stooges had to start at the beginning at some point.
Today, there are many online resources and tutorials to help single moms, just like you, learn all you need to know about investing.
When it comes to investing, I personally rely on an app called Betterment. It’s been a game-changer for me, offering cash-management services and serving as a reliable robot-advisor at my fingertips. I’ve used it for some time, and I can vouch for its effectiveness in helping single moms like us make the most of our hard-earned income.
This app is 100% FREE! And it’s also one of the oldest and biggest apps that can offer you cash-management services and is a robot-advisor right at your fingertips.
Choose your insurance wisely.
As a single mom, you have plenty of things to worry about. You worry about your family, making sure that you have paid rent, and having a backup plan for a car accident.
Insurance, in my experience, has been the ultimate safety net for both myself and my children. That’s why I emphasize the importance of choosing your insurance carefully. It’s not just about protecting your assets; it’s also about securing your family’s future. In this section, I’ll share insights into how to select the right insurance, drawing from my personal choices and the knowledge I’ve gained through my own journey.
Make sure your family is protected with renters home insurance and car insurance.
Take your time getting different insurance quotes from different companies. And when it comes to your car insurance, you can get the lowest rates at CheapInsurance. Remember, you’re not creating a safety net just for yourself but also for your children and their future.
Change the way you think about money.
Lastly, but most importantly, it’s essential to make a shift in your mindset. After all, everything begins with our minds. If we can’t change our minds, how can we expect to change our finances, especially your single mom’s income?
You might be sitting there thinking, this is easier said than done when the reality for most single moms can be quite overwhelming. Yes, the reality is that as a single mom, there is a good chance that you will struggle more than a married mom.
As a fellow single mom, I know how overwhelming it can be to juggle finances and family responsibilities. But I also know that change begins with our mindset. Instead of feeling overwhelmed, let’s focus on the success stories of single moms who’ve been through challenging times and managed to uplift themselves. Their stories, which I’ll share here, are a testament to what’s possible. They inspire us to believe in our own capabilities and financial potential.
If other single moms could pick themselves up by their bootstraps, why can’t you?