The following is a guest post from my wife, Carrie, who is launching her own blog titled Online Advice Columns. Her blog is also part of my niche site experiment and I’ll update you later on how that is progressing. To help promote her blog you can get an additional entry to my book and $5 Amazon gift card giveaway by leaving a comment on the latest post at Online Advice Columns. It would also be nice if you leave a comment here but it won’t count as an entry to the book giveaway.
What does the year 2011 have in store for American Families? If you were to ask that question many people would say, “Tougher Times”.
As many families live paycheck to paycheck trying to figure out what bill can wait until the next time, or how they are going to feed their family on what little money they have left and how they can afford to put gas in the car.
Saving money is hard for all types of families, and with the way prices of gas, food and taxes are rising I see it becoming even tougher. So what and how can we as Americans do to help ourselves save money and provide a better life for our kids?
My husband and I are simple people. We do not live above our means, and we don’t just go out and buy things because everyone else has it.
We save money by watching what we buy, looking at store sales and cutting coupons, and not buying everything. People shop everyday for things they don’t HAVE to have. Spending hundreds and thousands of dollars on things that in a few years they will throw away or put in a garage sale.
If you watch store sales, or even go to websites of the grocery stores they offer great deals and sometimes you can even print their coupon off and save even more. Also, don’t buy name brands all the time. Off brands are sometimes just as good, and I am just as careful about brand names as my coupons, because there are some off brands that are just the same as name brands and the name brands will have a coupon so you are saving more.
Driving is becoming more and more of a huge expense than we all know it. In another year, we could be seeing gas prices as high as 5.00 per gallon! When I stop and think about that, it is awful.
This is one area where I believe we can help each other. Carpooling is one way to help save on gas. Take turns riding to work with coworkers and split the gas cost. You can do this with taking children to school as well. If you live in an area where you have to drive your children to school, find a neighbor that is going to the same school and take turns driving the kids. Another idea is plan your driving trips each week. Don’t do extra driving and stay home more.
If you stay home more you are saving money, and you are spending quality time with your family,which is something else that more and more families need to do. Almost everyone can save at least 50.00-100.00 a month if they really try and put the effort into it and stick to a plan.
Times are getting to the point that we are going to end up with more and more homeless people, kids without food and clothing, and businesses shutting down because people can’t afford to drive. We need to stop and think before we drive, go to the store, or purchase that bigger TV, and ask ourselves “Do I really need to do this?”