Life can get super hectic for busy parents, especially those who work or run their own businesses, and finding time to keep on top of personal finances can be a challenge.
I’d love to tell you there is a silver bullet or a single ‘time hack’ that makes money management a breeze, but there isn’t. It does take time and effort and finding ways to get a handle on your finances is a MUST if you want to hit your money goals.
I’ve put together a few money tips for busy parents that can make it easier to fit money management and saving into a hectic schedule.
Time block your money planning
When something is important but not necessarily urgent it’s easy to put off – review expenses or make hungry, tired kids their dinner? Pretty simple choice, right?
Essentially, time blocking is just scheduling your to-do list against your calendar so it actually gets done. You block off time in the day, week, or month to work on that item. In this case, your finances. I do most of my planning on a Sunday afternoon or evening, just seems to work for me.
Time blocking your money planning also gets it off your mental to-do list. When we continually remind ourselves we need to do something, we waste more mental energy thinking about doing it than if we just did it. Knowing you’ve got 15 minutes on Saturday afternoon scheduled to check over expenses for the upcoming week means you don’t have to think about it until then.
Download an app to track business expenses
Do you submit expense claims for work or tax time? Things can get pretty messy and time-consuming if you don’t keep on top of it all. You end up with piles of receipts everywhere and a mental running list of expenses.
Choose passive investing strategies
For parents who are busy with family, work, and everything in between, passive investing makes perfect sense. Passive investing is going for a buy-and-hold strategy as opposed to making regular trades where more research, tracking, and trading are required on your behalf.
Passive investing can include index investing, where you pick up one of the indices to track – like the S&P 500 – and when the market goes up, you have gains and when it goes down, you look to buy more. That’s counterintuitive I know, but a great way to manage the ups and downs of the market, since we know in the long term, the market will always climb higher over the long term.
It’s a great low-maintenance strategy when you don’t have the time to pour hours into monitoring your investments. Passive investing is one of my favourite money tips for busy parents. It just works!
If you want to know more about how to make passive investing work for you, I can guide you through the process, be sure to claim your free wealth consult call using the link below.
Automate your finances
Automating your finances means setting up transfers for savings, expenses, debt repayment, and investing to happen on an automatic schedule. While I admit it isn’t something you can breeze through in 5 minutes, it will save you SO much time in the long run.
It’s definitely worth investing a few hours (time block!) upfront to get your money management automated. I talk in more detail about how to automate your money for success in this post.
Order your groceries online
This is a time and money saver. The obvious benefit is saving time – skipping the drive to the supermarket, walking the aisles and the queues by ordering online. What takes an hour or more can be done in half the time, especially after your first time when you are more familiar with the process.
It also saves you money. Online shopping allows you to see all the specials in one place and compare brands quickly. Plus you won’t be tempted by the extras that you didn’t actually need but somehow found their way into the trolley!
Double up dinner
While a lot of expenses in your budget are fixed; grocery spend is one you have control over on a weekly basis. Trimming down meal costs is a great way to quickly boost your savings.
Double a recipe each time you prepare dinner and freeze half. You’ll have a quick meal in the freezer after busy days when you’d otherwise spend money on takeaway. Cooking in batches works out to a smaller price per meal overall too. Slow cooker meals are a super-efficient (and yummy!) way to cook in bulk.
Since food is one of our biggest ongoing expenses, in terms of money tips for busy parents, this is an excellent way to make your money go further with less effort. Now that has gotta be good, right?
Listen to finance podcasts or audio books
There are so many amazing money books out there with incredible financial advice, stories, and strategies. Audiobooks are a fast and effective way to learn when you have a million things to do.
Put one on while your cleaning, folding clothes, getting ready in the morning, and commuting. Listening to an audiobook on the way to work is a great way to set the tone for an energised day and remind yourself of your money goals!
Outsource recurring business tasks
There are times when spending money upfront saves you money in the long run. If you’re a busy parent juggling family life and running your own business consider outsourcing administrative or basic marketing tasks.
Tackle one money task each month
Getting your finances in shape is less overwhelming when you focus on getting just one task sorted each month. This month could be the month to combine your superannuation, next month might be the time to review your current service providers, and so on.
You don’t have to get everything done all at once.
Use your time-blocking technique to take a step towards your monthly money goal each week.
Are you a busy parent? I’d love to know your favourite money-saving tip that you use to manage your finances. Let me know in the comments below.
Ready to get your money and wealth on track for success without the need for hours and hours of work? Claim your FREE Wealth Planning Consult call where I will show you how to overcome your challenges and get on track for success. Find a time here.