In our lifetime we will make thousands of purchases. From the little things we eat, to romantic gestures and right up to those vital items we struggle to afford. Money is tight and products cost more so how do you keep the costs down on the most expensive purchases you will ever make?
Your Family Home
Regardless of whether we rent or buy, the roof over our head is the most expensive purchase we will make. Moving can be an costly experience so trying to find a long term home where you can start a family or plan a retirement is vital. Real estate brokers can be very good at helping you spend your money, but they can save you a lot of time. Brief them on exactly what you need from your forever home and give them an absolute limit on budget. Try to keep that budget under what you can afford, that way you won’t be stretched if you hit any financial hurdles later on in your life.
Doing It For The Kids
Children aren’t a purchase, but they will be one of your largest expenses. According to statistics taken in 2013, the average cost for a middle income family per child is $245,340. Of that figure over $39,000 is spent on food and $44,400 on education! It’s actually crazy to even imagine those numbers. Work out the areas you value as most important such as education and health then work on cutting the costs of others. Saving just $10 per week on food could reduce that figure by a staggering $9,360!
We Don’t Need No Education
Obviously we do. But there has to be a point where you ask yourself how much further education you can afford. Yes, we want our children to have the very best start in life but sometimes that just isn’t possible financially. Look at work based learning as an option to help lower the pressure and check out our tips on how to reduce education costs.
Driving Down The Costs
All families need transport. Some households have over three cars! Buying a car is a huge expense from the vehicle itself to the daily running costs. There are ways of bringing this down to a minimum. Start by really considering if you need more than one vehicle. When children get to a driving age it is important for them to have freedom however do they really need to be driving their own car or could they share yours. Is it vital you drive to work or would you consider changing your habits? Keeping on top of basic car maintenance will bring your repair bills down and regular checks on tyre pressures will help increase your fuel economy.
Take a look at the big expenses you have to make and get planning on how to make long term savings. As we pointed out earlier, cutting back by just $10 a week on all of the four areas above soon adds up. Be frugal and then you might be able to afford a better retirement!
*This post was submitted on behalf of PennyMindingMom.com.