Frugal Living: How to Save Big Bucks With A Big Family

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Having a big family means that everything is bigger. Bigger car, bigger house, bigger excitement. It also, however, means that you have to have a bigger budget. Saving big bucks when you have a big family is altogether possible. You simply have to know how to cut corners and get the best deals.

Watch the Grocery Budget

One of the biggest drains on a family’s budget is food. One of the best ways to save money when you have a big family is to cut down on food costs. Many families achieve this by using coupons or shopping in bulk. Others find that eliminating meat from the diet is a huge cost saver and a healthy choice. Still others simply have “Meatless Mondays,” or skip meats on specific days of the week. Growing your own vegetable garden is a simple way to save on fresh produce. Bulking up on rice, potatoes and other low cost foods is an excellent way to save money on food.

Save on Clothing Costs

When there are many children in a family, they often benefit from shared clothing. If, however, this is not an option for your family, there are ways to save money on your clothes budget. First, try to shop in the off-season for your kids’ clothing.

Buy school uniforms in the fall, after the back to school rush. Purchase your winter clothing for the next season in early spring, and find the best deals on summer clothes in August. Shop on auction sites like eBay for clothing in bulk. Search for “wholesale lots” to find clothing grouped by size and gender and priced at a discount.

Earn Additional Income

One of the best ways to manage the budget of a large family is to bring in additional income to supplement your earnings. There are many creative ways to earn extra money, from selling crafts on sites like Etsy, running an online bookstore on Amazon or freelance content writing. You can also engage in mystery shopping and get paid while scoring free stuff like groceries, gas and housewares.

Companies like ACN can help provide you with the services and technology that you need to allow you to work from home and still be able to communicate well with others. You could also serve on virtual juries, participate in clinical trials and take part in focus groups. When it comes to bringing in extra money for your large family, the sky is the limit.

Decrease Transportation Costs

Another major expense is transportation. Many families find that consolidating trips and using the car less is easier on the budget. If you can, consider walking, biking or riding public transportation to work. Consider getting rides from friends, family or co-workers to cut back on the cost of gas and maintenance. Consolidate trips and have “no car” days in which you don’t drive anywhere.

Saving Money on Vacations

Instead of opting for the motel or hotel on your next vacation, consider renting a house from a home sharing site. These houses come equipped with kitchens, helping you to save money on food costs as well. Many families opt to drive instead of fly to their destinations. Taking short, mini-getaways is a fun way to travel often without spending big bucks on your travel.

Finally, consider skipping the package deals and enjoying free excursions instead. There are great free festivals, farms and national parks that are amusements onto themselves. Pack a lunch and go fishing or just take a trip to see fall foliage. You don’t have to break the bank to enjoy a memorable family vacation.

When it comes to big families, there is more love, fun and memories to go around. This doesn’t mean, however, that your budget has to be super-sized. Find ways to cut costs today.

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Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from West Jordan, Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max.

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