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This information is inspired from my post: HOW TO BECOME A STAY AT HOME MOM ON ONE INCOME.
So, if you followed the steps on day 1- Can I afford to quit my job and day 2-how to transition to staying home, you have figured out where your money is going, how much you have to work with and what you need to live off of, comfortably.
Now it is time to jump into the “what ifs” – or should I say “when-it-happens” and how saving money for your family NOW will be what you will need THEN:
There are always times when you spend more than you anticipate. Our family of six found that one month we paid $1,600 in medical bills and the next month it was $1,400 in medical bills. A month later it was $60. Those first two months, we spent a LOT, but it wasn’t our normal spending. This put a damper into our idea of how much we had to spend (and this is where our savings came into play. We save for things like this.) Those months were out of the ordinary… two of our kids had tubes put in their ears. A week later, our other son developed pneumonia and had to be hospitalized for four days (he has asthma). It was a rough month, but it wasn’t the first time this had happened. A few years ago, we were paying $1200 every two weeks for our sons asthma medicine (that did not have a generic version). Thankfully they have a generic now!
This just brings my next point to the table… You need to know that expenses like this CAN come up and you need to be prepared. Normally, we spend less every month for routine visits to the Pediatrician, ENT, Dentist, etc., but that can be thousands, even with good health insurance (Our health insurance is the best that my husband’s company offers through United Health Care, but 20% of any bill still adds up to a lot when you have large bills or a large family). If you’ve read our son’s story, you know that we see specialists a lot. Sometimes we will go six times a month to specialists and physical therapists, etc… (ps- here is the good outcome!) At one point we were paying $1000 a month for therapies.
So, when adding up the numbers, be sure to highlight the abnormal payments, as well as your normal payments. (Car tires, car repairs, house repairs... calculate all of these things because they can happen again… and probably will.) Do you foresee a new heater or a new roof?
If you feel like this is more than you would normally spend, highlight it. Next, take that highlighted number and divide it by 12, giving you an idea of your “abnormal spending” per month. You can save money for these things and keep it in your savings account. If you don’t think that anything will happen, it is a safe bet to just add in a couple of hundred a month for these things, just in case. You want to be prepared when these cases arise.
Next, you want to try to decide how much money you can save by cutting back on certain items.
- Would keeping your child home from daycare or preschool save you enough money to allow you to stay home?
- Would eating at home every night instead of eating out be all that you need to do?
- Do you need to work enough to make $200 a month to be able to stay home?
- How can you do this? (I have several ‘at home’ job ideas in my ebook: You Can Be a Stay at Home Mom on One Income).
- Look at your outgoing payments compared to your incoming payments and see where you stand.
You can head over to Paula at Beauty Through Imperfection to see her Day 3 – How to make more money in 2014.