We all know that raising children doesn’t come cheap

Mom! Career woman! Taxi driver! House-cleaner-upper!

Being a single mom often means that you carry many titles and responsibilities – alone.

As the head of the household, it’s up to you to make sure that your children’s needs are met… including their financial needs.

And, we all know that raising children doesn’t come cheap.

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That’s where a (strict) budget comes in handy! Here are a few, quick tips to help you make the most of your money each month:

READ MORE: Survival tips for single parents (You have this!)

How to make it work on one income

Draw up a budget

If you’re not used to working with or drawing up a budget, now is the time to learn!

Use the money you bring in each month as a starting point. Once you know what you’re working with, outline your fixed expenses; like rent, electricity, medical aid and school fees, after which you can allocate money towards petrol, groceries and any ‘nice to haves’.

They say that you should ‘save before you spend’ each month; which is easier said than done when running a one-income household. Nevertheless, you should still try and put something away each month. Anything can happen, and having a little safety net will help bail you out on a rainy day, without you having to get into massive debt.

Assess your spend

Analyse your spend at the beginning of each month; which stores and rewards programmes will give you the most bang for your buck?

Think fuel rewards, cashbacks, and two-for-one (buy in bulk) specials.

Prioritise what’s important…

Making it work on one income means that you’ll need to prioritise what’s important…

Rent, electricity and basic groceries are important, while eating out and your TV/streaming services are not.

Schedule weekly financial ‘check-ins’

Scheduling a weekly financial meeting with yourself is an important step towards sticking to your budget, and allows you to keep track of things such as:

  • Your current balance;
  • Any outstanding or upcoming payments (so that you can plan for them); and
  • Where you’ve possibly overspent and need to tighten your belt in the coming weeks.

This is also a good time to write out your grocery shopping list for the next week and check what’s on sale – and where you can save!

READ MORE: Finding love as a single mom (because you can and should make time for romance)