According to the Department of Agriculture, the cost for raising a child from birth until they’re 17 years old is $233,610 — and that figure doesn’t include saving for college! Here are a few tips for saving money with it comes to raising kids.
- Realize that you don’t have to buy everything brand new. Consider organizing a trusted group of parents to trade gently used items for your kids. Clothes, sports equipment and toys are items they may outgrow quickly.
- Skip the extravagant birthday parties. There’s no need to deplete your bank account by bringing in pony rides or special performers like clowns and magicians. Most kids will have plenty of fun just playing with each other. Pizza, cake, and a yard or nearby park to play in can let kids be kids.
- Teach kids about money. If they’re younger, start with basics like explaining how items have value. For instance, ask your daughter if trading her favorite doll for a cupcake is a fair exchange. Or you can have your child help when you pay for meals – they’ll soon realize things cost money. When they’re older, introduce an allowance, but insist they budget for things they want.
Controlling regular expenses for your kids can help leave room in your budget for college savings.
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