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To be able to live the dream of watching your child and live a life you still love can be possible. We want to share with you some of the ways we figured out how we could make it work for our family to be a stay at home mom. I know there are all kinds of people who want to be a stay at home parent, and I know these three things will help you figure out if you can do it financially.
You will want to write a budget that covers all your expenses and that is it. Expenses like a roof over your head, utilities, water, trash, food, gas, insurance, etc. Everything else you could cancel if you needed to. Yes, you might not want to, but this is where you will have to figure out what the difference is between a want and a need is.
A need is essential in your life to live. (But you must be careful here because eating out is not essential – that is a luxury, that is a want and I want you to have that too!)
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A want is something that is not essential.
When we wrote our bare minimum budget, we were lucky that we did not have to do much to make it work. This was probably because Tom and I were both living by ourselves before we were married. When we got married, we did not increase our lifestyle. We stayed on a one income lifestyle. We can probably thank me for that. We were stashing my income away to savings and we were paying the bills with his income. You need to know that we got married in May, found out Ember was coming in June, and had Ember in January. It all happened very fast so we did not have the opportunity to increase our lifestyle.
Our minimum expenses was our RV loan at $737, Rent $360, RV/Car/Renters insurance $250, Cell phone $212, Food $600, Gas $150 so we came to about $2,300 for our total expense.
You will want to figure out how much your income will be without your income. So say you make $50,000 and your spouse makes $75,000. Now you will only make $75,000. Can you live off of that? I think you can, but you may have to adjust. It will be okay to do this. Remember it is only for a season of you life and think about the savings you will reap on day care costs and travel costs for you.
We personally went down from about $6,000 per month to $3,000 per month.
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You personally have to find out if you can do it yourself. Are you going to be a better parent staying home? Is day care going to be too costly for you? Do you find joy in your work or will you find joy in being in your kids life daily? You have to have a serious talk between you and your spouse. Maybe, you can afford it, but you need to have a little side hustle for extra things in your life. It will give you some parent time alone too.
This question is the big question. Can you afford it? You do not want to become a stay at home parent if you are going to struggle and be fighting about money. Money is the worst thing to fight over. I am lucky that we do not fight over money because we trust God to come through for us each month. There are months during this last season when both my husband and I quit our jobs it was stressful. I am not going to lie. There were months that were over and close. But every single time God came through and he always will if this is truly what you believe he wants you to do.
To make you and your family afford it, do you need to make certain moves to change? This will be habits to change and it will take a couple of months. I always suggest to save one income completely and to live off of the one who will still be working to really see if you can afford it.
How much more do you need to downsize to be able to make this dream possible of becoming a stay at home parent. Things to think about. You will not be commuting anymore so your gas and insurance will go down.
Maybe you don’t need a house as big as you have. Think about downsizing your home. Think about it less to clean. Less to buy. Less of a lot of things!!
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