By the time I was pregnant with our third child, we knew it was time to get serious about making my dream a reality. You need to make sure that you can afford to be a stay-at-home mom before walking away from your job. How to afford to be a SAHM? If you're ready to take control of the runaway horse that's driving your life, there's hope! And that paycheck I was earning was barely covering the costs of my work. Recently I made the decision to be a SAH momma too. When you see this, if you have the freezer space – stock up! We pay out more in bills than we are bringing in. It’s been 7 months and we finally sold our old home which will allow us to pay off ALL of our debts, hooray for being debt free!! Before you decide to leave the workforce and become a stay at home wife or mom, give your financial health a checkup. It was at these sales that we stock up on canned goods and dried items like pastas. Is it more important than owning the latest gadgets? Can you babysit? Formula is expensive– Even more so if baby has allergies. So much great advice here Jamie! Ready to join them? I’m a nurse in my late 40s and married. It was one of the worst situations to be bringing a baby into. Call your credit card companies and see if they can work with you to lower your payment. Thanks for partying with us every week on #FridayFrivolity. Learn to finally (FINALLY!) It’s open until Tuesday night! Your goal now is to find a way to lower each and every one of these things. Expenses like these can cut your income dramatically: Before you give up your second income, practice doing without it now. We paid $160 a month for our Jayco Travel Trailer, and $440 a month in lot rent at the campground. From the 15th to the end of the month, it felt like we could do whatever we wanted and still have money left over (when living on two incomes). I’m guilty of not taking my own advice here, but holy crap the money we spent on restaurants! I left my great job as a nurse when our son was 18 months to stay home. My company matched a part of it so that was a nice bonus. Promise! When I realized our income was going to be cut in half, I started paying all of our bills weekly. Tips For Being a Happy Stay-at-Home Mom 13 Habits of Highly Effective (and Sane) Stay-at-Home Moms. . Then, go through your bank account and write down what you’ve paid for each of those things for the last 3 months. Bread – stock up when you see the “We Made Too Much” racks at Walmart. Be honest with yourself. We tried to live on one income before I left my job and that was a big help. My life is busy, filled with driving too and from school “C” and “D” and therapy sessions for “C”. I proudly watched as my Hubby crossed the stage wearing his cap and gown. Today. There is no way we could pay our rent without my salary, though. I hope things continue to go so well for you and your family! We even had to pull money from savings to cover all of our bills sometimes. I shop at aldi and troll sale papers for best deals. Sign up for the budget plan on your utilities like electric and gas. We still had to cut WAY back. It meant resolving to live in an RV for a few months while we worked to build up my husband’s credit score so we could buy a home, and it meant living as cheaply as possible to make our dollars stretch as far as they possibly could. Medium Sized Family uses affiliate links. It was the most rewarding thing I could do for the girls. What prompts me to look at this topic is a recent C NN Money article “Moms: “I can’t afford to work.” Once you decide to stay home, your remaining paychecks becomes “extra money”. Hands down. Hi Jordyn, congratulations on the new baby! I used to get so wrapped up in saving money that I didn’t do anything or even leave the house. I order what I need and get the heck out of there. Keep an eye out for festivals in your area. I was a mess! Over 2,100 like minded people are already subscribers. We waited 13 years for our son and I love every minute of every day I’m with him. This is all very good advice, Jamie! I shutter to think where we’d be without nurses. Hey, I saw a post you made in the EBA forum and your blog name caught my eye. You won’t miss it, just do it. I would love to be paid for being a stay at a home mom! We have to make time to go to parks and festivals:). I wish more people would, at least, respect our decision to be home with our children. I appreciate any help you can provide. After all, we will soon be living off of less than half of our annual income. With these two options, we’re able to watch the same shows that I used to watch on HGTV, I just might have to wait for them to pop up on the streaming option unless I want to get DVDs in the mail and watch them a few episodes at a time. It takes me 5 minutes from start to finish and is crazy easy with toddlers. I’m so happy you were able to stay home with your girls! Also, keep an eye out for their discount section, usually in the middle of the store near the canned goods. These are the 4 main sacrifices I made to afford to become a stay at home mom. Do whatever it takes and get rid of your car payment! There is also a free outdoor movie night just one city over where we can go and watch old favorites, like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Getting awesome at not wasting food by keeping easy food storage supplies on hand like this and this were probably the easiest and fastest money-saving moves we made. Which will save me thousands of dollars for better coverage! Switching from gourmet grocery store or even our local grocery store to Aldi has saved us so much money! No more traveling to Charleston, SC on weekends just because. We try to make great memories while still living on an extremely tight budget. This inspired me so much and I love reading other people’s comments. How to afford to be a stay at home mom in 9 steps. How much do you want to be a … According to mom.salary.com, a stay at a home mom juggles about 96.5 hours of work a week – that’s 50 hours of overtime and she should be paid close to $162,581 for all the different things she does in a week.. So it was with my journey toward becoming a stay-at-home mom. I truly wish more people would realize that before it’s too late and they’ve already missed too much. Join the #brightsaver 30 Day Money Saving Challenge. We recently bought a 2007 Honda Odyssey, also in cash, to have two cars in case something happens to one of them. The 1st of the month, everything was due. But I hope that after reading this article you’ll see that it’s attainable by discussing and planning it out with your partner and being careful of your household spending habits. stick to a meal plan! We moved 7 hours from our hometown for a job that paid a few cents LESS per hour. I wouldn’t trade it for the world though! Because we followed this plan, I was able to give my notice just a few days later. I want you to make a list of all of your monthly bills. It’s not easy though! Your email address is always safe with us! Thank you for the encouragement also – I really appreciate it! It’s just takes a little more effort. When you know things are going to be really tight, especially at the end of a paycheck when you’re waiting to get paid again, dump meals are an awesome go-to. I love this post because I really do wonder how people afford to stay home! We almost always eat at home and shop for used clothes in order to save money to live on one income. It’s really hard. When Nugget was just 5 weeks old, we drove an RV, a moving truck, and our SUV south to our new home in Durham, NC. Another adoption?? I think part of wanting it more than anything means being willing to go without luxuries like eating out often and buying new clothes. My parents were recently very surprised to find out that our family of four only makes about $3.4k per month. Can you negotiate with any of your utility or loan companies by explaining your situation? We’ve always been good (or bad, depending on how you look at it) about stocking up on food when we find a really good deal. Find out if it's possible, and if it's really what you want the most! Are you a stay home mom, or do you want to be? I am very eager to be a mother. The point of being a stay at home mom is to be present for your kids. You can buy produce cheaper than anywhere else (or use their sale ads to price match at Walmart), they have an incredible selection of rotating specialty items, and they have great prices on things like cheese. I was due in June, so we had an entire school year to make our preparations. Their French bread loaves are usually only $1 which is already an amazing deal, but you can often find them for only 75 cents or even less! Thanks for the comment! The only difference is now we actually enjoy it! But the more payments you can eliminate, the stronger your chances are at succeeding at being a stay at home mom without digging a giant hole of debt. By the time you account for daycare it just isn’t worth it. “Don’t fool yourself into thinking you’ll be able to get a lot of work done while you’re home with the kids” – YES! I found your website today through pinterest for homesteading. He was a complete surprise and our living situation couldn’t have been much worse. Believe it or not you can negotiate with some of your utility companies. I’d define it as being extremely intentional with your money. Y. es, and I was giving up my income to do so. Evaluate your lifestyle. There are SO many ways around having cable that there is really no reason to keep forking out so much of your hard earned cash each month. We can figure this out! Your genuine desire to help other moms is so genuine. Finally, don’t panic. Love this! I think if doing your best to live off one if you plan to stay home is such a good idea, it can be a much bigger change than you think! I’ve been a SAHM for a little over a year now. Any parent will tell you being a stay-at-home IS a job – it’s just not a paid job. My maternity leave was ending, and after going over all our income and expenses, I could not make the money add up! You CAN afford to be a stay at home mom (or dad) even if your spouse has a low income. Plus, childcare costs were eating into my income enough to make it not worth it. I promise, it’s so worth it. Great tips Jamie! It’s a sad truth sometimes. Great advice – especially about working from home to make up the difference. I’m currently a teacher and just have such a burden to be with my children rather than everyone else’s. But we just weren’t in a position to make it happen yet. [clickToTweet tweet=”Hope for Moms who want to learn how to afford being a stay at home mom. 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