The financial side of being a stay at home mum – bargain hunting!

Raising kids is an expensive business. There is always something, food, clothes, shoes, toys, the list goes on. Let’s face it, life in general is expensive and I believe that no matter how much you have, you will always live with what you’ve got. When I was on my own I really didn’t earn a lot, but I managed ok. With both mine and hubby’s salaries we did save some, but we were a lot more generous with gifts, and we treated ourselves more and had more luxuries.

We are obviously in a very lucky position in that we can live just off of my husband’s salary as this means that I don’t have to work, and I can be a stay at home mum. But we are not so well off that this is always easy. We live to our means, we manage to save a bit each month in case of unforeseen expenses, such as new car tyres, MOT’s etc. but we never manage to save as much as we would like to. We could absolutely manage on less if we had to, we have a nice house so our mortgage is expensive and the cost of upkeep can be high, and if we were really that strapped downsizing would help. But we love our house and we aren’t in the situation where we would need to do that.

Nevertheless it isn’t always easy to manage off just one salary. The seasons are changing, it’s getting colder so we are having to think about what Monkey needs, a new coat, warmer clothes, a new sleepy bag (you know the gro bag type things) etc. We were lucky that we had a load of hand-me-down clothes from a friend over the summer, which saved us loads of money! But shorts and t-shirts are not what he needs right now so it’s time to go bargain hunting.

I am a bit tight when it comes to his clothes. There are so many cute clothes that I just love, but I really find it hard to justify spending a lot of money on clothes that are only going to get a few months wear out of them. With a few outfit changes a day due to dribbles, spillages and just generally having fun with dirt, water and anything else he can get his hands on, we need a selection of clothes. So its time to hunt out some bargains! I personally like clothes from supermarkets. They are cheap and generally can be tumble dried – especially useful in the cold weather. I bought a 3 pack of long sleeve tops for £5 from Tesco yesterday, bargain! Some places, which are only middle range, can charge £10-11 for one long sleeved top so that really is good value.

Sales are also good as then you get the cute and good quality clothes for much cheaper. My neighbour just told me about Pumpkin Patch’s latest offer (ends today I think) where you get a further 30% off sale prices and free delivery! Hello! There wasn’t a lot left in Monkey’s size but I did manage to get a lovely fleece for £6.30 with free delivery! Can’t be bad eh? I passed the info on to another friend and I think she has got the same fleece for her little one  so they will be matching hehe :)

I’m also spending a lot of time on ebay, especially for toys. As he is getting bigger he does need some different toys to help him use his imagination etc, but we can’t afford to spend a fortune on toys all the time. Second hand toys though are bargainous! A couple of weeks ago I managed to get a push along car (you know the type they sit in and can move along with their feet, or you can push with the parent handle) for £4.70! And yesterday I bought a Fisher Price Little People Garage (he is really interested in playing with cars at the moment) for just £5. Both were local collection only so no postage and so what if stickers are missing or it isn’t pristine, it saves you so much money when you add it all up and Monkey is just as happy either way.

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With Christmas coming up I am sure that I am going to be looking out for lots of bargains and offers and have started trying to get in early with some things. Anyone else have any tips for bargain hunting?

6 thoughts on “The financial side of being a stay at home mum – bargain hunting!

  1. wow iam impressed by your recent buys!!!4.70 for that car!!wow….thats why i dont agree in buying new staff…is too expensive…and lets be eco-friendly and reuse where possible:))I think ebay its good, and also there is lots of outlets online that saves u money…and shopping in places like Springfields…outlets shops:)))There is huge vax sale…75 percent off…i was about to get one…even though i get one!!!haha..u sparked all that bargain hunting in me!!!

    • haha I am glad I have sparked your inner bargain hunter! Thanks for the Vax sale info! I do hate my hoover but not sure I can justify buying a new one as ours does actually work.

  2. We always get the kids their clothes in the sales the year before they need them, so have all seasons covered! I like them to wear nice things, but hate paying full price for them, so only every get bargains! I’ve actually just got all of my daughter’s 4/5 yr stockpile out today as it’s her 4th birthday in a couple of weeks. My son’s 1, so they get through them faster, too, as they’re every 6mths on a size change then – nightmare! I only buy toys in sales or with voucher codes, too, though don’t tend to check eBay – I will be now! Thanks

    • I do like the idea of buying clothes in advance, have struggled to do that with Monkey because as you say they go through them so fast at this age! As his growth steadies out though I definitely want to do that! Especially for his shoes, his feet are growing so fast at he moment and his widths keeps changing but shoes are so expensive. Have seen some shoes in sales recently but daren’t buy them in case he is a different width again when he goes up a size! Yeah definitely check out ebay for the toys, you really can get some bargains!

  3. Pingback: Parcel Tape play and a slightly longer attention span! Age 16 months | Becoming a Stay at Home Mum

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