Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.
There is no responsibility quite like the responsibility of a parent. There is so much to consider when you are taking care of a child that the list never really seems to end. There is always one more problem to sort out, one more appointment to book in, one more item of clothing to buy, and an endless list of potential issues to look out for. When you are a solo parent (whether this is through choice or not), this responsibility can become overwhelming. Suddenly, everything is on your shoulders, whether your partner is still around to help out or not. If you have become the primary carer for your child as a newly single parent, the burden of financial responsibility is going to be at the top of the list of things keeping you up at night.
The last eighteen months have shown us just how precarious all of our financial situations can be. No one would dispute that furlough pay was better than no pay at all, for example, but you certainly notice that missing 20% when you are buying new clothes for your children for the new season, and now it’s coming to an end. If you are facing these issues by yourself for the first time, it is easy to feel like there is simply too much to worry about. That is why we have put together some tips to help you manage your household income.
One of the most important things to remember is that you should not panic. So many people get anxious when it comes to money, but panicking is one of the fastest ways to create more problems for yourself. Taking a calm, methodical approach is going to be the surest way towards finding a solution, so don’t rush and remember that there are options to deal with every problem.
Know What You Are Working With
One reason why so many people get a bit panicky when it comes to their finances is because they do not have a clear idea of what their budget is. When you are not keeping track of what’s coming in every month, any changes are going to come as a nasty shock. So, it is time for you to sit down and get to work on a detailed spreadsheet.
Figure out exactly how much money you have coming in every month, and then look at where that money is going. Start by listing the big expenses, such as your rent or mortgage, then move onto the other regular bills such as your energy costs and any other outstanding debt repayments and go all the way to your weekly shop and any treat purchases. Once you have a clear idea of how much is going in and out, you can identify opportunities for savings and prepare for the times of the year that are more expensive.
Don’t Leave Anything To Chance
One of the few problems with creating a detailed budget plan is that it does not always factor in the events that you cannot predict. You might know when the next bill is due, but you can’t always plan for your car needing to be repaired, or your pet requiring an expensive operation.
One of the biggest worry factors when it comes to our household income is our job security. It is often easier not to think about it, but we have seen during the course of the pandemic how quickly things can go south for our employers. You do not want to find yourself stranded if you are made redundant, or if you need to give up your job because of illness or injury. This is why insurance is so important. You probably already have home insurance, car insurance and pet insurance, but you should really consider income protection insurance. Income protection insurance can cover up to 70% of your gross salary to help you continue to manage those essential expenses. Drewberry Insurance can help you find the right policy for you to give you that peace of mind.
Look For Opportunities To Save
This one is sometimes easier said than done, isn’t it? We all like to think that we can spot a bargain when we see one, and we all do our best to browse for the best deal. But as we head into the colder months, expenses can rack up quickly. We need to buy warmer clothes for our kids, we need to make sure we are stocked up on healthy food and cold and flu medication, and we know that the heating is going to be on more than usual. With gas and electricity prices set to rise by a significant amount, you need to make sure that you are actively looking for the best possible deals. Use price comparison sites and don’t be afraid to get in touch with providers to ask what they can do to convince you to sign up.