Being a single mom you are in full charge of your household finances. This is where the importance of budgeting comes into the picture. It can be overwhelming for single moms to generate a robust budget while taking care of their children and managing other household responsibilities. This guide will throw light on how single moms can make a solid budget for their household using the best budget apps and plan a good future for their families.
Why Is It Important For Single Moms To Make a Budget?
The process of examining your income and comparing it with your expenses over a particular period is known as budgeting. Single moms who want to manage their finances should learn to live on a tight budget. Budgeting helps them to control their expenses, set aside extra funds, and track their bills and costs. Budgeting helps single moms make better economic choices, be prepared for emergencies, achieve their financial objectives, and escape obligation. Without planning on a budget single moms tend to go off their budget and weaken their financial situation.
What Are The Budget Tips For Single Moms?
Budgeting means developing a plan to manage your finances. Planning a budget helps to avoid the pressure or stress that comes along with single mom duties and responsibilities like paying for monthly bills, children’s school fees, daycare, and so on. Making a well-planned budget can be challenging as a single mom especially if you are living on one source of income however it will help you to stay on track and avoid making impulsive purchases. Following are the best budgeting tips and strategies for single moms to follow.
1. List Your Priorities
The first and foremost step to creating a budget is to list down your priorities. For instance, single moms prioritize putting food on the table and feeding their children over everything else. On the other hand, some single moms wish to settle down their bills and loans first. Listing your priorities will help you to determine how to pay out once you get your paycheck
2. Making Savings
Being a single mom doesn’t mean you cannot achieve great things in life. One of the best ways to achieve your goals is to save a few dollars every month. As per the rule of thumb, you can save a minimum of 30% of your monthly income. It can be challenging as a single mom to save 30% of your income while managing other responsibilities. However, even 1% of it is just fine. Every single mom should make saving their topmost priority.
3. Go For Cheaper Alternatives While Making A Purchase
It is recommended to find cheaper alternatives whenever you are making a purchase. Before making a purchase, conduct some research to find a cheaper alternative without losing on the product quality. For instance, instead of purchasing products from big supermarkets while going shopping, you can go to smaller supermarkets in your local area. This way you can also get products at fairly discounted rates and save a few hundred dollars.
4. Set Aside Funds For Emergency Situations
As a single mom, you are in charge of every household expense. If you find yourself in an unexpected situation you may need extra funds to get over it. This can add more stress and burden. Setting aside some funds for situations will help to cover any urgency without stretching your budget.
5. Prefer Cash Over Credit Or Debit Cards
While going shopping it is recommended to walk with cash instead of choosing credit or debit cards. When you use cash you can stick to your budgeted plan however choosing credit or debit cards over cash has a risk of overspending. It can hurt your financial life if you tend to live like this. Single moms who are finding it difficult to stick to a tight budget can switch to using cash.
6. Starting A Side Hustle
For single moms, a flexible way to maintain a lifestyle is to start a side hustle. Starting a side hustle is a flexible way to bring in extra cash along with your regular income. For instance, you can start tutoring or freelancing online. One of the best things about freelancing is that you can work from home. The Internet brings new and endless opportunities for single moms to work from home.
Best Budgeting Apps For Single Moms
Financial wellness over recent years has become the center of discussion. Financial wellness and preparedness are incomplete without making the right budget. No matter whether you want to run a business or your household, budgeting will help to strengthen your future. Businesses and households often fail to manage their income and expenses at ease. To make their budgeting easy there are several budgeting software and apps available in the marketplace. The following is the list of best budgeting apps for single moms to use.
One of the most popular and oldest budgeting apps for single moms is the Mint which comes with a wide array of features to help them manage their finances from brokerages, banks, and private money lenders. Mint has many features to offer to users and one of the most crucial ones is the budgeting tools which enables you to get alerts if you are exceeding your budget. Using this app will help single moms to strictly stay on their planned budget. The app also helps you to track your spending habits by category. By using the app you can check your monthly cash flow to see how you’re spending your money. Mint is one of the most downloaded budgeting apps and has achieved high ratings on Apple and Google Play stores. The best thing about this app is that it is completely free to download. The application provides personalized recommendations and tips so that you can cut on unnecessary expenses and get extra wiggle room within your tight budget to attain your specific goals faster for instance purchasing a new car or going with your kids on a family vacation.
One of the best budget apps for single moms that can keep them away from overspending is the PocketGuard. The app helps users to keep track of their spending every month and the app can be easily linked to all the bank accounts. PocketGuard offers one of the easiest and most convenient ways to set up and connect to bank accounts. The application gives you numerous opportunities to save money and avoid overspending in the future. The app connects your bank account, investment, loans, and credit cards and helps you to track bills. Using the app will help single moms learn how much money they have left to spend after setting aside money for necessities like savings and bills. The app tracks your network and gives you options to link your bank account and track your finances manually. Although you can use the free version, the paid version of the application known as PocketGuard Plus provides debt payoff loans and the option to export other features and transactions.
3. Personal Capital
Single moms looking for an investment tool as well as a budgeting app to manage their finances will find Personal Capital a right fit for them. Users get a comprehensive view of their economic position by accessing the app. It will help you to track your everyday expenditure and get a customized spending snapshot. The app helps single moms list their spending transactions as per category so that they can examine how much they are spending monthly on each category. Besides, the app offers other necessary financial tools like 401K management, retirement planner, tools to track your cash flow every month, education planner, and other necessary tools to track and manage investments. Personal Capital is free to use and you can download it on both Apple and Google Play stores. Single moms can also get guidance and suggestions online as the company offers blog articles on its website covering a variety of topics related to financial aspects.
Another important budgeting app for single moms that helps them to make a budget with confidence, gain insights about their saving and spending habits, and track their day-to-day transactions is EveryDollar. The app offers users a simple interface. Unlike other budgeting apps, EveryDollar does not sync users’ bank accounts; instead, users can manually enter the amount they’re earning and how much they are spending every month. The free version of EveryDollar helps users categorize the items within their budget and also sets alerts or reminders about bill payments. EveryDollar has a premium version that includes prominent features that help users connect with their bank account and make transactions within the app. It offers them custom recommendations and reports based on their purchasing habits.
Single moms looking for an effective budgeting tool will find FamZoo a great tool since it will help their children learn about financial literacy. The app has been designed for families as a means of educational tool so that they can teach their children about financial aspects. FamZoo enables single moms to attain their saving goals and even enables them to teach their kids the value of money. The program provides prepaid debit cards to subscribers and this is a perfect digital version of the cash-based envelope system. The program offers the effectiveness and simplicity of the traditional envelope method and is also a convenient, safer, and e-commerce friendly tool. Parents can split their monthly payments into individual spending or savings accounts to teach their children how to be responsible with money.
This app has an envelope budgeting system that enables single moms and other users to keep track of their monthly finances. In other words, users can portion their income every month towards particular spending categories that are known as envelopes. Users can add cash amounts, account balances, other sources of income, and debts manually into the app and set money towards particular envelopes. The app allows you to plan your monthly spending rather than tracking your expenses. It has a free version with limited regular envelopes to manage your spending habits. The paid version of the app known as GoodBudget charges $8 every month and enables users to design unlimited envelopes.
This is an accounting site and application that assists single moms and helps them deal better with financial aspects. Single moms can connect their financial balance to the app and allocate cash to different envelopes or classes like individual spending or bills. The app comprises easy-to-manage budgeting envelopes, has a wide array of learning opportunities, and adds financial transactions to your account automatically. Single moms can add their pay, make purchases, or save financial plans and see all the records in one spot. The app is not free to use and the most basic plan charges a rate of $6 every month. The premium packages of the app cost around $10 to $20 per month. Users can access premium features and tools such as budgeting video master classes as well as quarterly meetings with the assistance of a financial coach who helps in designing long-term budgeting plans and giving them essential advice.
Being the head of a family, single moms need to figure out how to increase their savings, cut off unnecessary expenses, and settle unpaid loans or debts. This is why budgeting is a crucial tool. When you are a single mom it is important to manage your finances and stay within your budget so that you can meet your monthly obligation and provide a better life for your children. Effective budgeting will help to lead your life with stability and comfort and build a bright future for yourself and your little ones. Fortunately, there are numerous apps and software out there that are designed to reduce the stress of budgeting and spend money wisely.