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Smart Savings (For Splurges!)

Saving money isn’t nearly as fun as spending it. But when your family’s monthly expenses are rising, it’s critical to have a budget. And, by making a plan for your family’s finances, you can find ways to afford luxury items or activities that reward you for your hard work as a busy mom.

Holly Carroccio, a certified financial planner with Dallas’ Nexus Advisors, LLC (a financial planning group that boasts a special-care planning team for families with special needs), says that the first critical step to saving—and, eventually, spending—is to take a big-picture look at your monthly expenses. Then, she says, investigate your discretionary spending, particularly subscription-based plans (like gym memberships, cell phone services), and make sure these expenses are still cost effective.

After making small cuts (like giving up your daily Starbucks), Carroccio says, “Put the savings somewhere, like a savings account, and set a goal for what you’re saving for. If you already have a goal in mind—even if it’s a small goal, like a manicure, it will give you the energy to sacrifice a little bit and get creative in the ways you save money.”