Financial Freedom for Single Moms: Steps to Mastering Budgeting Like a Boss

Ashlee Sep 15, 2023
14 People Read
budgeting, budgeting steps, savings goals, financial plan, financial goals, piggy bank, planner, saving money, money

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase. This site is not intended to provide financial advice and is for entertainment only. 

Hey mama! Are you ready to take control of your finances and kick some budgeting butt? Well grab a cup of coffee (because let’s face it, caffeine is our secret weapon” and get ready to learn the art of budgeting like the boss you are. I know, I know! Budgeting sounds like no fun, but it is the first step to getting your finances in check! So let’s get into it, yuh! (I know you read that in Doja Cat’s voice)

Step 1: Embrace Your Financial Superpowers

As single moms, we are masters of multitasking, organizing chaos, and problem solving. So, budgeting should be easy right? I mean, you literally juggle more tasks than a circus performer on a daily basis when raising munchkins! Embrace your inner badass and approach budgeting with confidence! You have all the tools you need to become a budgeting boss, so let me show you how to put them to work!

Step 2: Counting Coins and Tracking Costs: Assess Income and Expenses

First things first, I’m the realest! No but seriously, let’s look at your income sources. This will include your salary, child support, alimony, side hustles, government assistance, and any additional source of money you have coming in. Personally, I like to use a budgeting app like Every Dollar, Mint, or Embrace because it allows me to categorize each income source. There are plenty of different apps, so finding one that works for you personally should be a breeze! You can use a spreadsheet, the pizza box from the night before, or just a plain piece of paper. Just get everything out and visible for easy access. 

Next, list all of your expenses. I REALLY suggest taking the time to sit down and go over every single cent you spent last month and writing it down. I mean there is no way I spent that much money at Chick Fil A….right? This will slap you right in the face and open your eyes to what you are actually spending money on and just how much! Categorize your expenses in a way that makes sense to you. I like to separate fixed expenses ( things like rent/mortgage, car payment, utilities, and insurance) and variable expenses (groceries, gas, clothing, and entertainment). When listing expenses, be thorough and list everything. Even the small expenses add up! I also recommend using the same app or method you used to input your income.

Step 3: Set Clear Financial Goals: Craft Your Path to Financial Greatness

To create an effective budget, you need to be clear on what your financial goals are. Determine what you want to achieve in the short term and long term. Are you striving to pay off debt? Save an emergency fund? Invest in your child’s education? Save for a family beach vacation? Whatever your goals may be, they will be the driving force behind sticking to your budget. Knowing your “why” will help you stay on track when that new bag is taunting you from the store window. 

Step 4: Pennies with Purpose: Master the Art of Smart Spending

As a single mama, prioritization is your superpower. You do this flawlessly throughout your day to day life. You can probably do it in your sleep! Always start with the essentials: Food, shelter, utilities, and transportation. Allocate the necessary amount of your budget to these things first. 

Now, look at your variable expenses. Is there anything you are currently spending money on (or more money than you thought) that you can dial back on or that you no longer use? Have you been using that gym membership or could you cancel and workout at home? (I had literally donated a monthly amount to my gym for over a year and never saw the inside of it) Could you find cheaper options for cable or internet? Maybe you don’t even watch the channels you are paying for! Go through your expenses and trim the fat where you can, and where you WANT to. If you can afford all of your expenses and still reach your financial goals in the time frame you set for yourself, do you!!

Step 5: Supermom’s Shield: Building an Emergency Fund to Power Through Life’s Surprises!

Life is unpredictable, just like a toddler on a sugar rush who just got home from Grammy’s house. That’s why it is crucial for you to build an emergency fund. Think of it as your shield, protecting you and your family from unforeseen financial hurdles. 

Let’s face it, emergencies don’t send us an invitation before they come knocking on our door. From unexpected medical bills to car repairs, life has a knack for throwing curveballs our way. As a single mom, being prepared for the unexpected is imperative. An emergency fund may vary in amount depending on your personal financial situation. I recommend having 3-6 months of living expenses in a high yield savings account. These accounts pay out higher interest than your everyday savings account. Who doesn’t want to make money ON TOP OF money you’re already saving?! You can find some of the highest interest rates at PNC, Marcus, and Citizens. An emergency fund can keep you from going into more debt if something happens to your income or your circumstances change. It also allows you to have peace of mind. Remember, use it ONLY for emergencies! That amazing deal on that Apple Watch does not count! 

Alright sister, get ready to unleash your inner superhero and build a financial fortress that can withstand any storm!

Step 6: Automate Like a Tech Wizard

Let’s bring some magic into our budgeting game. Embrace the power of technology and automate your finances. Set up automatic bill pay, transfers to your savings account, and even investment contributions. Most bank apps allow you to set up automatic bill pay. This way, you can focus on being the amazing mama you are without worrying about missing due dates or forgetting to save. Personally, I set up automatic weekly transfers from my Capital One checking account to my high yield savings account with Marcus by Goldman Sachs. It’s like having your very own personal financial assistant, but without the expensive salary.

Step 7: Budgeting Wins: Let Loose and Celebrate Money Milestones, Mama!

Budgeting like a boss bitch is no easy feat, so celebrate your wins, big and small. Did you stroll past those new shoes that were calling your name and not make an impulse buy? Treat yourself to a little dance party! Did you stick to your budget for the whole month? Splurge on a small indulgence. Acknowledging and rewarding yourself for you hard work will keep you motivated on your financial journey. Let’s be real, who wants to do hard work and get no reward? NOT ME! So treat yourself mama!

If you made it his far, congrats girl! You are serious about reaching your financial goals and are well on your way to budgeting like a boss ass bitch!

Remember, budgeting doesn’t mean sacrificing fun. It’s about finding balance between enjoying life’s pleasures and securing a stable financial foundation for you and your family. Love grabbing coffee every day before work? Does it make your day brighter? BUDGET for it! It’s okay to indulge as long as you are not sacrificing your goals! Drink that coffee girl! We all know we are better mamas when we are caffeinated! 

As single moms, we face unique challenges, but we are also equipped with an incredible strength that propels us forward. Nothing can stop a mama on a mission! So let’s continue to conquer our financial goals, one budget at a time! Financial freedom is within reach, and with a solid budget in place, you are unstoppable. So go ahead, rock that budgeting crown like the queen you are and show the world what a mama can do! Remember, I am right here cheering you on! You got this! 

Disclosure:  Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase. This site is not intended to provide financial advice and is for entertainment only.