5 Habits Every Frugal Mom Should Have

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If you’re a mom who’s in charge of the family budget, you already know that it’s important to exercise a little frugality. Your family’s future depends on how effectively you allocate your funds, and it's crucial that you live a prudent and responsible lifestyle to avoid compromising your family’s goals. That being said, we’ve come up with a list of five frugal habits every mom should practice.

They map out their family’s expenses.

It goes without saying that tracking where your family’s money goes is the most crucial step to ensuring that you don’t live beyond your means. It will take a lot of attempts before you perfect the family budget and successfully implement it. Yet, it will be rewarding once you realize that your family will eventually reap your hard work in the future.

One way of mapping out your family’s spending is by downloading an expense tracker app like Mint on your phone. Through this, you can enter how much cash has been taken out of your bank account and place it into categories like family member’s names or specific activities. Doing so can enlighten you on where you spend the most and make the necessary adjustments to cut costs.

They snatch great deals when they can.

Frugal moms know the importance of getting a good deal, and they’re not afraid to shop at outlets or check out the dollar store. However, being frugal doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to compromise on the quality of the goods that you buy.

As a pro-tip: Most stores go on sale at specific times like New Year’s Day or Black Friday, so make sure that you keep track of the biggest sales of the year by scheduling a notification on your phone calendar. Another way to get great deals is by signing up as a member of stores that have rewards programs like Target and Old Navy. Usually, they offer member-only discounts and have special deals for their patrons.

They use credit wisely.

Despite being vilified by some as a gateway to incurring massive debts, using credit can actually help your family save more money ⁠— if it’s handled correctly. To reap the benefits of good credit, A beginner’s guide to building good credit by Petal Card recommends paying your bills on time every single time. This lets you boost your credit score and keeps you from having to pay unnecessary interest charges on missed or incomplete payments.

It’s a good idea to keep an eye on how much of your credit limit you’re spending, too, as maxing out your credit limit can hurt your credit scores and even make you less appealing to lenders when getting a new house or car.

They meticulously plan out their family’s meals.

Eating out can get expensive. In fact, the average American household spends $3,000 on dining out every year. To help you lessen your expenses and avoid eating out at restaurants, you should plan out your family’s weekly meals.

To start, list down easy recipes that your family likes and purchase all the ingredients before your week starts. This way, you use everything you buy at the grocery store and avoid spending on food items that might just get looked over in your fridge.

They know when and how to say ‘no’.

Most importantly, a frugal mom knows that prioritizing their family’s needs is crucial, and they should know how to stand their ground and say no if their kid’s request requires them to go over their budget. Usually, kids ask for unnecessary things like the latest video games or a new gadget ⁠— and saying no to them without making them understand why their request can’t be granted can drive a wedge between you and your kid.

Fast Company’s guide to saying no advises that you should take the time to explain yourself and your budget so your kids know that every penny is allocated for a special purpose. Doing so can help your kid understand that money doesn’t grow on trees, and introduces them to the concept of budgeting.

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