Raising kids is never easy. Especially, if having more than one: you need money to feed them, pick clothes, and take care of additional expenses (like medicines).
Inflation is a painful factor for parents. As money’s purchasing power decreases, everything has become more expensive, from gas to groceries. While we might like to believe that the inflation tunnel is finally coming to an end, experts concur that there is still a way to go.
In this post, we’ll expand on the topic of inflation, and how it influences your family. We’ll talk about the steps for parents to undertake, so the inflation doesn’t feel so bad, and the ways to protect yourself during these fiscally challenging times.
Reducing Food Costs
You should make a certain budget for food and spend money wisely. For example, if you see long-term goods with great discounts, buy more than usual and make a little stock. But do it only if you use these goods even without discounts.
The average American family spends more than 600 dollars per month on food. And of course, when facing a money problem, people may apply for a cash loan in 1 hour and cover at least the cost of food.
However, how many times can you request a loan? Right, the interest goes higher, and you can’t take more money until you repay the debt. So, solve the question in another way.
Also, you should think about which food is unnecessary and brings only harm to your health. It will be a double win – saving money and health saving.
Another piece of advice: try to replace some items with another one which is on sale at the moment.
But the main step on a way to battle inflation is reducing food costs. For example, make purchases in smaller quantities; buy less meat, and avoid throwing away the leftovers (unless they go bad, which is obvious).
Saving on Gas Bills
Gas prices remain at pre-pandemic levels, despite the recent drop-off between June and August 2022. It is especially painful for house owners, who have a car. In addition, gas prices are hitting some teenagers who have permission to drive.
To save money on petrol or cut down on pointless trips to the store, think about joining a carpool.
Inflation may temporarily limit your enjoyment, but it won’t last forever, and before you know it, you’ll be back to the occasional buying extravaganza.
Dealing with Energy Bills
If you can somehow control the gas and food bills (by simply reducing the number of times you visit the shopping store or drive your car), some of the costs are way harder to control (like heating and cooling bills).
One of the solutions to a problem can be the Emergency Rental Assistance program: it provides funding for low-income families, unable to pay for rent or utilities.
On the interagency housing portal run by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, tenants, utility suppliers, and landlords can learn what emergency rental assistance covers, how it functions, and who is eligible (CFPB).
Unfortunately, there’s no alternative for some consumers but heating their homes. Some people have elderly people to take care of; some of them are sick, and can’t stay in a chill environment for long; and, finally, the most popular situation is a toddler kid who needs to stay warm day and night.
That’s why you might want to try cutting the food and gas expenses first before considering turning the heat off.
On the other side, if it seems possible for you to tolerate cold nights, turn the AC off, and you’ll see the positive impact on the next bill.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, almost 90.2% of two-parent white families received federal assistance back in 2011.
It is a significant predominance over the single-parent families who successfully applied for funding in 55.8% of cases only.
With all the necessities being trimmed, it’s pointless to say you have to start from unnecessary costs, including:
- Dining out
- Expensive clothes
- Streaming service subscription, etc.
In addition to keeping an eye out for freebies on Facebook Marketplace, make the most of free neighborhood events and activities to reduce the cost of family entertainment.
You might not have seen it earlier, but the neighborhood library is a fantastic place to start because they offer everything from free family movie afternoons to free story and craft sessions.
If you’re seeking free entertainment, be sure to check out your neighborhood leisure facility. Numerous museums and attractions also provide free or discounted days.
Utilize any local, elder, and child discounts you come across.
Find a Source of Income
Finding more income could entail taking on a second part-time work, asking your manager for a raise based on performance, and keeping up with inflation.
When considering ways to make extra money, think outside the box. Do you need to get rid of any clothing or other household items? If you want to remove some junk or get them recycled, contact organizations like Checksammy.
Think about selling them on Facebook, eBay, Poshmark, and other online marketplaces. There are many opportunities for innovative, motivated individuals to earn additional income from home.
If you’re creative in a different way, and you got extra hours per day free, try yourself as a freelancer. Engage in writing blog articles, making design creatives, or marketing social media accounts.
With tons of possibilities available free of charge, we all can become great specialists in a chosen area. Why not learn how to code? Or pursuing recruitment opportunities?
As soon as you start browsing for job offers, they will find a way to enter your life. Therefore, no need to apologize for a low income; there’s always a chance to reexamine your financial opportunities.
The Bottom Line
Inflation is something out there you can’t see, but you surely feel. It brings disappointment to many families, especially the ones having kids.
Anyway, it’s not the end of the world, and battling inflation can be your everyday choice or a one-time decision.
Inflation is different: walking, mild, galloping, or hyperinflation. The only way to avoid it is to adjust your lifestyle and costs to the demands of a growing market.
As soon as you understand that inflation is stepping on your toes, make sure to cut the costs on unnecessary products (like a Netflix subscription, or dining out bills), and plan your budget accordingly.
Trim the food costs, use public transport instead of riding a car, and see if you can apply for the federal assistance program to cover utilities.