Money has been identified as the number one source of stress in many families. According to a recent study, many families believe that more money will make them happy. This seems straightforward enough: we all want more money for our families to pay for the mortgage, rent, food, clothes, energy bills, holidays and much more. But what about having a secure financial future? This study also reveals that only a third of families prioritize their families’ financial security. So, is more money the answer? And is there more we can do in our families to build a happy and secure future. To make the most of the family’s money and secure a good future, families should renew their focus; from just wanting more money, to adopting effective saving strategies instead.
This can benefit the family by reducing stress, providing a buffer for family emergencies as well as making money available to acquire what truly makes your family happy. Unfortunately, many families find that there are obstacles and find it challenging when working to achieve a savings goal. There are effective and less stressful ways to overcome these obstacles and work towards achieving your family’s financial success.
Looking after the money
Firstly, you and your family should commit to, and have a positive attitude towards managing your money. It is important that you pay attention to all aspects of your finances and their impact of family decisions. A family budget is a very useful tool and can be a way to identify and manage your spending patterns and areas you can save on. A helpful way is to start by budgeting for the family income and essential bills such as rent, energy bills, food, etc. This then allows you to plan and make good use of any money left over by deciding whether to spend on other items or put them into savings.
And when there is not enough money
What happens when your family’s budget shows that spending will exceed available income? This can add to the stress in many families. However, this is why budgeting is important. It allows you to take control by planning and taking advantage of available opportunities to meet the shortfall. Your family can consider putting some unused items such as toys, furniture and equipment up for sale, using eBay, to cover the cost of essential items. Taking control also means that you can make good use of credit by using personal loans and credit cards to fund emergencies and other big purchases; and plan the repayments as agreed with the lender.
Cutting spending and cost
You should also regularly look at ways to cut down on your spending and make savings on family purchases. You can cut on cost and save a fortune by giving up or limiting some non-essential spending such as going to the theatre, eating out etc.; shopping for deals on energy and other utilities using comparison websites; and using budget retailers for groceries and other home supplies.
Some financial decisions can be difficult, but the important thing is for you and your family to be clear on your goals, take control, take action and remain positive.