Lynne Eliopoulos
ERA Key Realty Services | 508-832-1032 | [email protected]


Posted by Lynne Eliopoulos on 2/3/2019

A good number of families faced the option of living on a single income for several reasons. It could be due to health challenges, work layoffs, the need for a stay-at-home parent, or an agreement to live on one income for the greater good. Whatever the reason may be, families living on one income always find it challenging. Of course, it is not the best option, but it is the reality of a good number of families out there. 

If you belong to one of such families, then grab a sit as I take you through some practical tips that will help you live well while living less.

  1. Draft a Practical Budget. To optimize the little cash available to the family, you must draft a realistic budget. I say realistic because most families go overboard while writing budgets and end up struggling to stick with it. Your budget should be practical. It should be one that allows you to live well while living less. Be sure to estimate your monthly income before allocating cash to each item on the budget.
  2. Know the Difference between Needs and Wants. A recurring mistake seen in most families is trying to live above their means. Why spend thousands of dollars on a car when you can get a cheaper one? Lose the habit of spending heavily on designer clothes, shoes, and accessories. You can get those stuff at a decent price. Go for things within your budget and learn to the difference between your needs and wants. There is a huge difference!
  3. Chase Junks Out of Your Home! I wish I can emphasize this enough. Junk takes up a substantial part of your income and leaves you with nothing but another pile of trinkets. And by junk, I mean everything that is of little or no importance such as trendy clothes (they go out of fashion before you know it), junk food (of course, you don't need them. They are not healthy after all), etc. Why get a new dress just because it will look cute on you? What about the dresses at home, don't they look cute? Resist frivolous spending. Instead, spend on things that have value to you and your family.
  4. Don’t Spend the Left Over. Learn to save!Families who stick with their budgets find that they usually have a few bucks left at the end of the month. While that is ‘worth celebrating,’ it is, in fact, an avenue to save. As a single-income family, you should always be on the lookout for means to save some extra cash. It could be from using coupons, getting a side gig, monthly leftovers, etc. Whatever the source of the ‘free money’ may be, it is no excuse to spend it all. No, save it instead!
  5. Being Self-Sufficient is the Way to Go! An excellent way to live well while living less is to become self-sufficient. Pick up some DIY skills. Learn to make home-made products and food recipes. A garden will help too. Ditch commercial products and stores. Learn to do it yourself!
  6. Try Investing! Cutting back on expenses and saving ‘free money' are great ideas but that is not all you need. Saving means having a little extra cash readily available when you need it but investing, on the other hand, means having more money (than you saved or earned) on hand when you need it. Start investing today!

If you're saving up to buy a new home, talk to your real estate professional about ways to save on down payments.




Tags: budgeting   down payment   family  
Categories: budgeting   down payment   Family  


Posted by Lynne Eliopoulos on 12/17/2017

If it always seems like your money disappears as fast as you earn it, you're not alone. All too many people live from paycheck to paycheck -- even when their income is well above average.

Why is this condition so widespread? Well, the reasons are as varied as people's spending habits, lifestyles, and financial obligations, but there is one factor that is often overlooked: self-defeating attitudes toward money. Here are a few examples you may be able to relate to:

  • "I don't have the time or patience to compare prices." The truth of the matter is that it doesn't really take that much time to do a few quick price comparisons when you're in the supermarket, department store, or on the Web. During the course of a typical week, you probably make dozens of spending decisions, many of them almost unconsciously. By simply increasing your awareness of how much you're spending and what the alternatives are (if any), you can often save hundreds of dollars a month.
  • "People who use coupons are penny pinchers." Although the term "penny pincher" is frequently used to describe someone who's stingy or overly careful with their spending habits, some people consider it a badge of pride to be frugal and careful with their money. It's all a matter of perspective. There are numerous blogs, small businesses, and newspapers that have no reluctance about including the words "penny pincher" in their name While few people want to be thought of as cheap or stingy, frugality has different connotations. It's associated with being economical and thrifty.
  • "I don't want people to think I'm cheap." This can be a tough self-defeating thought to overcome because it's often so deep rooted. However, if you're a compulsively high tipper or often feel obligated to pick up the check at restaurants (rather than splitting it with your fellow diners), this could be a contributing cause of your budgetary problems. Generosity is a wonderful thing, as long as it's not based on a desire to be liked, accepted, or approved of by other people. As a side note, concerns about being perceived as "cheap" is one reason some people don't take a closer look at their retail receipts, restaurant bills, and other invoices. Remember this: There's nothing cheap about being unwilling to pay extra for cashier or restaurant staff mistakes -- which are more common that you might think -- and unauthorized or redundant fees on bills.
Another factor which contributes to tight household budgets is not having a budget at all. If you don't take the time to identify your expenses and deduct them from your monthly income, then it's next-to-impossible to gain control of your finances. While there's no panacea for spending beyond your means -- and some people clearly need professional advice and help in dealing with financial management and debt problems -- sometimes a few simple attitude shifts can make the difference between scarcity and surplus in your life.




Categories: budgeting