Managing household finances is essential to preparing for the future and protecting your family when emergencies and hardships occur.
When my husband and I became engaged in 2012, we immediately started preparing for the future. We knew we wanted to buy a house and have a family at some point. We both were working and saving toward the goal of buying a house.
We bought our house in 2014 which was the same year I also had my first child. When I became a stay at home mom, finances became more of an issue because we relied solely on my husband's income.
Making sure your family is financially secure is so important. Here are some tips on how to prepare for the future and protect yourself and your family in case of emergencies.
Household Finances - Family Financial Planning Tips
1. Create a Family Budget
With a budget, you can see how much you have each month to spend on food, entertainment, and bills. Use a program like Excel which gives you a great spreadsheet to work with. When you can see how much money you have to work with, it'll be easier to stay in budget.
2. Set Aside Emergency Savings
My husband puts away a certain amount of his paycheck bimonthly for emergencies. Let's say your car needs to be repaired immediately and it will cost $700
. If you don't have that money at the ready, it can be difficult. Put away as much as you can for emergencies from your paycheck. Even the smallest amount like $20
per week can really add up in the long run.
3. Use Apps to Track Spending
There are so many smartphone apps designed to help you with finances. Find one that suits you and your family's needs best. Having this app can be great for traveling or on-the-go spending.
4. Take advantage of education savings
In this day and age, having a college degree is practically mandatory when applying for a job. When my daughter graduates high school in 2032, who knows what the job market and expectations will be like. We save money per month for her in a 529 College plan. If Scarlett chooses to go to college after high school, hopefully she'll have enough money to get her through the first two years without taking out loans.
5. Create a List of Excess Spending Habits to Target
Are you guilty of going to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts everyday? Those $2.00
coffees don't seem like a lot per day, but they can really add up over time. If you have a home coffee machine, you can save money by having your cup of joe at home. Try to see if there's anything you're buying unnecessarily that you can cut out. By saving that money, you'll have it for things you really need.
6. Set Five Year Family Goals to Encourage Savings
If there's something you know you really need like a new car, it's essential to save money to reach your goal. A lot can happen in five years, and it's helpful to have that money ready so you can achieve your goal. Set money aside to meet your goal of purchasing a new house, going back to school, traveling more, etc. When you save money, anything is possible.
Blog Post Notes:
Money Advice for Moms, family budget
and family financial planning