Budgeting Tips for Single Moms: Making Ends Meet on One Income

Research shows that single mothers are more likely to experience financial struggles to make ends meet than married couples or single fathers. Because a mother cannot get away from fulfilling her duties even if she parts ways from the institution of marriage, rather she goes hard on herself to keep everything in order and that’s when it starts to take a toll on her.

According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2020, the poverty rate for single-mother families was 28.7%, compared to 8.7% for married-couple families. Similarly, a report by the UK’s Department for Work and Pensions found that 46% of single-parent households were in poverty, compared to 23% of two-parent households.

In India, the poverty rate of lone mother households is 38% in comparison to 22.6% for dual-parent households,” a report suggested. In a recent study conducted by the Center on Poverty and Social Policy at Columbia University, it was found that poverty rates for single mothers with children increased by 9.2 percentage points from June 2019 to June 2020. The various studies also revealed that single mothers were more likely to have lost their jobs or experienced a reduction in work hours due to the pandemic, making it even harder to make ends meet.

The data is overwhelming, I agree and it was a lot for me to process while I was reading what each report suggested then I also went to the comment section and read a few hate comments for the way single mothers raise their children. Our society makes it even worse by being a mere distant spectator.

Budgeting Tips for Single Moms

7 major financial constraints single moms face in everyday life:

  1. Limited income
  2. Childcare costs
  3. Housing expenses
  4. Healthcare costs
  5. Education Expenses
  6. Debt
  7. Emergency expenses

5 Budgeting tips for single moms

One mantra I follow with my kid is to let her decide it is what she wants to buy is a NEED or WANT and the same thing I follow in front of her, and now I see her doing it on her own. It has helped me a lot. 

Financial management and budgeting have always been challenging tasks, however, a few tips can help to create a budget that world for you and your family. Here are some practical budgeting tips or reminders for single moms who are struggling to meet financial ends while raising a child alone.

  1. Create a budget: Make a list of your monthly expenses, including rent/mortgage, utilities, groceries, childcare, transportation, and any other bills. Track your spending to see where you can cut back.
  2. Prioritize your expenses: Focus on the necessities first, such as rent, utilities, food, and childcare. Then, allocate the remaining funds to other expenses.
  3. Avoid debt: Try to avoid credit card debt and only use credit when necessary. If you have debt, create a repayment plan and work towards paying it off as soon as possible.
  4. Consider part-time work or a side hustle: If you have the time and energy, consider taking on part-time work to supplement your income.
  5. Seek support: Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family, friends, or community resources. There may be assistance programs available to help with childcare, housing, or other expenses.

Ending note…

I wish government bodies take more action towards financial support programs like child benefits, housing benefits, free education for children up to a certain age and more work opportunities based on the eligibility criteria to access such schemes.

I know many of you must already be following the same practices but is always reassuring to know that you are not alone. The struggle is real and so are the ways to deal with it. Sometimes we will feel we have everything sorted out and just the very next second things start to lose their grip.

Financial stress can lead to anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues, making it challenging to manage day-to-day responsibilities. You will be anxious, worried and dead scared to deal with situations, remember it is absolutely natural to feel that way. Reach out, speak and share. Let’s build a happy community together.

This post is a part of #BlogchatterA2Z 2023

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17 Responses

  1. A very thoughtful and thorough post. These suggestions would come handy not just for single moms but for all parents wuth kids though i understand single moms have it more tough.

  2. Your budgeting tips for single moms are absolutely amazing! I love how you’ve broken down the process into simple steps and provided practical advice that’s easy to follow.

  3. Agree. Single mothers often face significant financial burdens, as they have to take care of their children alone. By creating a budget, prioritizing the spendings, and making informed decisions can help manage their finances and reduce financial stress.

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