When Becky Goddard-Hill realised that she didn't want to go back to work after her maternity leave was over, she was faced with a difficult decision. Her salary was a large proportion of the family income, and managing on just her husband's earnings was going to be next to impossible.
Or so she thought.
Two babies later, Becky is still a full-time mum. She's learned a lot along the way, and has put all her tips, experiences and advice together into a book "How to Afford Time off with your Baby". We asked her to share some of her top tips for affording full time motherhood.
Here's what she said...
It is possible to stay-at-home with your baby even if money is tight. Whether you decide to be home with them full time or part time, for 6 months or 6 years, you will need to readjust your spending habits! Here are some top baby budgeting tips:
1. Don't be proud
• Accept hand-me-downs and pass on your stuff too. Share and you will be shared with!
• Buy second-hand wherever you can (check out ebay, charity shops in rich areas and NCT nearly-new sales.)
• Tell family and friends your situation. They will understand why you are more frugal and may even offer support.
2. Create more revenue
• Cash in any savings. Your baby is your perfect rainy-day reason.
• Make sure you get all the benefits you are entitled to. Check direct.gov.uk's parent section for more info.
• Consider family-friendly working such as mystery shopping, online surveys, or buying a franchise designed for full-time parents.
3. Be resourceful
• Breastfeeding and re-usable nappies are significantly cheaper options. Give them both a try.
• Walk wherever you can, leaving your car at home. Fresh air and exercise are good for your health and pocket.
• Go to local baby groups. For £1 you both get to relax, have a drink and socialise. These are FAR cheaper than baby-activity classes.
• Skill share. If you have skill such as hairdressing exchange it with a friend who can baby-sit. Build a community around you that is increasingly self-sufficient (it massively reduces expenditure!).
Good-luck and go for it....these are absolutely the most precious of days.
How to Afford time off with your Baby by Becky Goddard-Hill can be ordered now from Amazon and is available at all leading book retailers. Becky also blogs about baby budgeting at www.babybudgeting.co.uk