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Lightening the Financial Stress of Becoming a One-Income Family
Though the traditional household has now become the two-paycheck family, many find that it just isn’t reasonable for both parents to work outside the home, especially when the income of one of the parents is consumed by the cost of child care.
Here are some suggestions for minimizing the financial burden of supporting your household on only one income, should you be considering cutting back to just one parent working while the other stays at home as a full-time caregiver.
It’s relatively easy to move your household when you’re just renting your present home. Think about moving to a part of town or perhaps an outlying area with a lower cost of living but within reasonable commuting distance for the partner working outside the home.
You might even find that moving to another state is workable if living expenses such as rent, utilities, and groceries are generally less expensive than where you are now.
Of course, when moving to another state, it is necessary for the breadwinner to obtain a new job. If your spouse’s employer has locations in other parts of the country, find out if it is possible to transfer to a different location.
Work from Home
If you can work it into your schedule, try home-based employment such as freelancing, transcription, customer service, or crowdsourcing. You can even receive benefits from some companies. This is unusual though, since you will probably be employed as an independent contractor.
Some companies offering online content hire writers on a freelance basis, which could be a viable option if you have experience as a writer.
There are several online companies that employ writers on a freelance basis:
- You could make $15-$20 for each article published by Demandstudios.com.
- You can get $5 for each article you write for Need-an-article.com.
- The amount you can expect to be paid varies from Textbroker.com.
- You’ll receive $8 for each piece you write at Breakstudios.com.
You don’t have to work at home full-time if that isn’t doable for you — simply by working in your spare time alone, you could find yourself earning a few hundred dollars. And when you’re trying to get by on a single income, every dollar helps.
Spend Less on Entertainment
You may find that your family’s entertainment costs are much higher than you realized – fast food, pizza, take-out when there’s no time to cook, movies, concerts, and games, to name a few. You’ll notice that expenses mount quickly when you pay for these activities.
You might be surprised at how much money you can save by taking on tasks yourself and without feeling like you’re missing out. Save money, for example, by making your own pizzas. It can cost less than $5 to make a pizza from scratch.
Start the week by jotting down the free television movies available, instead of paying to rent a DVD. Think of the commercials as something you get paid for–you get paid the $7 to $12 per ticket you would have spent to go to the movie theater.
Dining on Someone Else’s Dime
Have dinner at your friend’s house or even at your parents. It costs a lot less than dining out all the time. By eating at friend’s a couple of times each month, you can save a substantial amount of money on groceries and entertainment.
If your present family situation would benefit from your household cutting down to one income, then stop procrastinating and do it.
It may require moving to a smaller place and finding low-cost or no-cost entertainments. Still, since you’ll be enjoying the company of your loved ones more of the time, the pros will outweigh the cons.