Becoming a parent can be a magical experience, but if you’re in your 40s- or even older- it can be a huge shock! All the work you did to build up your financial security is suddenly on shaky ground.
Babies are a wonderful gift, but they come with a huge price tag that lasts a minimum of 18 years. You’re going to need a good budget and a non-negotiable plan to keep your financial security throughout these years. Here are 6 tips that will help older parents retain their financial security during the child-rearing years.
- Cut Out a Luxury (Or Two!)
Unfortunately, there’s no way around this one. Unless you plan on finding a solid additional source of income then you’re going to need to cut down on some luxuries you may have gotten used to during your child-free years. This doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy some travelling, concerts, or football games, but you should start limiting yourself and being more frugal.
Stick to travelling or attending one event a year and, if you’re flying, go with economy seats instead of premium.
- Get Additional Income
Unexpected expenses come up with children all the time. Even if you have a great budget that takes into account the enormous costs of childcare, clothing, food, toys, etc., you may still want to find something you can do on the side to bring in a little extra cash.
Thankfully, there are a million things you and your partner can do on and offline to bring in some extra money for your family. If you enjoy driving and helping people out then you could consider driving with Doordash or UberEats. If you’re more of a homebody then consider filling out surveys or blogging.
Another idea that won’t take away your time with your little one is to start babysitting! You can offer to watch your friends’ children (or grandchildren). It’ll help out your friends, give you some extra money, and give your child some playmates.
- Get a Reverse Mortgage
Getting a reverse mortgage after you’ve already paid off your home can seem counter-intuitive, but it’s a great way to get some extra money in your pocket. A reverse mortgage will allow you to receive a check from the bank each month over a period of years until your home’s mortgage has been entirely paid back to you. Certain companies, like All Reverse Mortgage, offer low-interest rates, which will help you receive the best bang for your buck and it won’t lower the equity of your home.
- Get Back to Couponing
Maybe you used coupons when you were younger or maybe you’ve never tried it before, but couponing can be a great way to get everything you need at a discount. It’s even easier now that there are browser extensions like Honey that will scour the internet for discounts for you and apply them when you go to check out at most websites.
If you’re shopping in-store then you can search online for coupons that will work at the store you’re going to and cover the items you need to buy. Some big retailers also have coupons built into their app which can make this experience even easier and more convenient. Couponing can be a time-consuming process, but it can save you hundreds every month!
- Save on Your Energy Bills
One of the biggest bills most people face each month is their utilities. There are a few ways you can save on your energy expenses if you do the research. For example, you could replace your lightbulbs with something more energy-efficient to help reduce costs.
Another idea is to put up new blinds. There are some energy-saving blinds that work to keep the temperature regulated in your home. They do this by reflecting the air temperature outside back outside where it belongs and keeping the temperature in your home from needing to be adjusted as frequently. This can save you big money during the winter and summer months.
- Save on Childcare
The cost of childcare is astronomical when you add it up. Sending your kid to daycare every day of the workweek can amount to what you’d earn with a part-time job all year! You can save on childcare costs by asking friends or family to help out with watching your little one. If that isn’t an option then consider keeping your child at home with you and doing some remote work. Your child will appreciate all the extra time they get to spend with you and your bank account will appreciate the savings.
Managing the expenses of life with children can be hard, but it’s possible to stay financially secure even during the child-rearing years. You may have to change the way you’re doing things by couponing, reducing your energy costs, and even getting a side job, but there are ways to help you stay financially secure. I have some more ideas on How to tighten your budget without impacting upon family life here.