Congratulations on your new bundle of joy! There’s nothing quite like bringing a little one into the world. With endless cuddles, first smiles, and all those baby milestones, you’ll want to devote as much time as possible to nurture your newborn. So, if the idea of returning to work after 12 weeks fills you with dread, you might be wondering how to afford being a stay at home parent.
The high cost of childcare means it’s not always worth it to go back to work full-time and pay for daycare too. Especially if you have twins or two under two!
Giving up a full time salary can be tough though - there’s a lot to consider. This guide will help you figure out how to chop out unnecessary expenses from your budget so you can be with your kids.
Save during your pregnancy
The time when you’re still receiving a full salary is the right time to:
Cut back on your expenses
Practice living on a single budget
Put your salary into a savings account
Some of your savings will need to go towards those expensive items for your baby, like a stroller, crib, baby monitor, and car seat. Saving money ahead of time is crucial to afford being a stay at home parent once your baby arrives.
Evaluate your living arrangements
Having a baby is life changing and you may feel that the home you’ve been living in isn’t the most child-friendly. When you’re young, free, and single, it makes sense to live in the center of downtown, surrounded by friends and the buzz of city life.
But do you need to live in that expensive city apartment as a stay at home mom with a newborn? You can often save a bucket of money on your rent or mortgage by moving out to a smaller town. You’ll be rewarded with heaps more living space too. Minimising your loving space is another way how to afford to be a stay at home mom.
Plan your family budget
When you're deciding how to afford to be a stay at home parent, a budget can make or break your decision. Without one, it’s easy to spiral into debt by spending on credit cards and taking loans.
There are many different budgeting styles to choose from, including:
Cash envelope system
Percentage breakout method
Reverse budgeting method
The main thing is to pick a budgeting method that works best for you and your family!
Be prepared to cut back on your spending
You may find that your lifestyle changes naturally once you have a baby. But it's understandable that you're concerned about how to afford being a stay at home mom. The great news is it's easy to make some frugal adjustments like:
Stop eating out in restaurants.
Cook meals instead of ordering takeout.
Buy pre-loved clothes.
Look for bargains while shopping.
Don’t update your phone when a new model is released.
Keep your current car for a few more years.
Learning ways to be frugal is how to become a stay at home mom while being financially savvy!
Earn money as a stay at home mom
If you’re nervous about your vanishing full-time salary, remember that being at home doesn’t need to put a stop to your earnings.
There are plenty of stay at home moms who have turned a successful side-hustle into a roaring business.
Looking for inspiration on how to earn money while you become a stay at home mom? How about some of these ideas?
1. Blogging/affiliate marketing
Starting a blog is an ideal way to make extra cash as a stay at home mom, with minimal start-up costs.
To get started, choose a niche to blog about - perhaps related to your former work, a personal hobby or stay at home mom tips. The key is to write regularly and engage with your audience by responding to comments.
Bloggers usually make cash through affiliate income. This means you recommend products on your site and take a percentage of the sale as a referral commission.
2. Setting up daycare
If you're already at home caring for your child, why not open your doors and offer daycare for other families too? If you've been wondering how to afford being a stay at home mom, offering daycare can be incredibly rewarding.
And the benefits aren't just financial! You'll also get a thrill from supporting the growth of other children while providing plenty of playmates for your little one.
But opening a daycare is more complex than being a babysitter or a nanny. Before you start, you'll need a license, various other documentation and might have to rent a more suitable space.
3. Virtual assistant
If you have previous experience in admin or any aspect of running a business, you can offer a virtual assistant service to business owners and help to manage their emails, calendar, social media, bookkeeping, and more.
Some virtual assistants will set up their own website and use PPC or social media to drive traffic to it. Others might sign up with a virtual assistant agency to receive client work.
If you have existing skills you could leverage or are willing to learn some, freelancing is a flexible career that can grow alongside your family. You only need a laptop and broadband connection to get started. As a freelancer, you might offer skills like content creation, graphic design, or web design.
Freelancers frequently find work on sites like Fiverr or Upwork but the pay is low. You may choose to start here and then drive leads to your own personal portfolio website.
Once you have your baby in a healthy sleep routine, you could work on your side hustle for two hours during a lunch-time nap, plus an hour or two in the early evening.
To conclude, If you go back to work and don’t like it, you can always become a stay at home mom later on. Equally, if being at home permanently isn’t working out, that’s ok too. You might consider your partner being the stay at home parent while you return to work.
There are no rules, and everyone’s situation is different. So take your time in building the best plan for your family!
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