How To Live Off One Income

  • Post last modified:May 3, 2019
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** UPDATED MAY 3, 2019 **

Would you like to be a stay at home mom? But you are struggling with being able to live off one income?

This post will give you some tips to living more frugally to be able to live on a single family income. 

When I had Hudson, I knew right away that I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. At least until he was in school. I didn’t want to miss out on his first few years while I was working. That meant learning to live on a budget from only one income.

It’s not always easily living on a single family income, but following these frugally living and budgeting tips, we are able to successfully live as a single income family. 

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How to live off one income

How To Live Off One Income

Track Your Spending.

Tracking your spending is the best way to see exactly where your money is going. 

Write down everything you spend money on for at least a week, the longer you track your spending the better. This will give you a clear picture of where all your money is going each week.

Now you can take a look at your spending and see what you can cut back on. 

When I decided to track my spending I was mortified that I was spending over $100 on coffee and take-out. So I had to make a hard choice and I had to start making coffee at home and I also had to stop eating out all the time.


Create a monthly, biweekly, or weekly budget.

Write down all your fixed expenses for the month. Your fixed expenses are bills that are the same every months. Like your mortgage or rent, car payment, etc. 

Next write out all of your variable expenses. These are bills that change in amount each month. Such ass your electric bill, water bill, etc. 

Once you learn how much all of your bills are going to cost you for the month, see how much money you have left over. 

From this total you can budget out your groceries for the month, gas for your car, and anything else you need for the month. 

Once you budget out your necessities, you can either put the rest of your money into savings, or keep some one for “fun money”, thats up to you. 

Creating a budget will allow you to understand exactly how much money is coming in for the the month and how much your expenses are.

Laying out a budget this was helps you clearly see how much money you need for bills and how much extra money you have left over for the month. 

Think Before You Spend

I use the 3-day rule. If I see something I think my family wants or something I want, I wait 3 days before I buy it. This allows me to take the time and think if I really need this item, instead of buying on impulse. Most of the time I forget all about the item which means I didn’t really need it.

Create a Meal Plan

Creating a meal plan can help you save money a ton of money while grocery shopping. Having a set meal plan for the week also helps you know what is for dinner each night. Knowing what is for dinner each night stops the scrabbling to figure out what to make, which in turn makes you less likely to order take-out.

Another benefit with a meal plan you can also plan to use the left overs from one meal to make another meal for another day.

Side Hustles

If you are planning on being a stay at home mom, finding and online job can help make a little side money.

RELATED: Work At Home Jobs for Stay At Home Moms

Ditch the Cable Bill

If you really want to cut down on your monthly spending cancel your cable. If you cannot do without T.V try switching to a lower plan or getting Netflix.

Shopping Second Hand

Shopping second hand is a great way to save money. You can almost get anything you need in a thrift store for a fraction of the cost.

My favorite items to shop for at thrift stores are furniture, books, and baby clothes.

No Spend Weekends

You don’t need to spend money to have fun with your family. Find stuff to do for free in your town or city.

These are all ways that I live a more frugal life. Do you have any other tips to add to the list? Leave a comment!


What are some of your favourite ways to stay on budget each month? Leave a comment below!

How to live off one income to become a stay at home mom
How to live as a one income family. Living off of one income to be a stay at home mom.
Living as a single income family. Learning to be a stay at home mom with only one income.

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