If you’re looking for a few easy ways to make or save money this summer, keep reading—I’ve got a few ideas that will let you have fun without breaking the bank or blowing the budget. Summer time fun doesn’t have to be expensive to be enjoyable. It’s all about savoring the moments and the activities you most enjoy. Focus on the experiences rather than on what you’re buying.
Save Money This Summer
Whether you’re saving money for your first home, a vacation or simply to pay down your debts, you can save money this summer without feeling deprived. Set aside a special account at the bank (or a big glass jar) to put your savings in. You won’t be tempted to spend it if it’s separate from the rest of your money.
- Visit free attractions. Check with your local Chamber of Commerce or community center for free attractions in your area. Local businesses often have family fun days where they hand out free snacks and drinks to the kids because they hope you’ll be a future customer. Your local library probably has a reading program that’s free for the kids, and your local pool may have a particular day they let the kids swim free. Note the dates on the calendar so you don’t forget.
- Shop for clothes second hand. If the kids have outgrown last year’s shorts and tee shirts, visit your local consignment store or second-hand shop to find more. You can find great name brand clothing that’s barely worn at a fraction of what you’d pay retail. I’ve even found new clothes with the tags still on them.
- Drink water. Juice boxes, sports drinks, and soda are all very expensive compared to the water that comes out of the faucet in your kitchen. Make sure that you use a refillable water bottle to control the plastic heading to the dump.
- Bring snacks and lunches on your day trips. If you’re planning on visiting a local attraction, make sure you pack your lunch and bring a water bottle. Buying meals, snacks, and beverages can get expensive.
Make Money This Summer
Sometimes, no matter how much you save, you need to make a little bit of extra cash. If that’s the case, I have a few easy ideas that may work for you and the kids. Some ideas will earn more than others—but if you’re careful to set the money aside, by the end of the summer you’ll have more than you did when you started.
- Tag sale or garage sale. Whether you call it a tag sale or a garage sale, declutter your home and sell what you find. Toys and games that the kids never play with and clothes they’ve outgrown are a good place to start.
- Sell on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. If you have larger items like furniture or computers, you will probably get a better price for it if you sell it on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace than if you try to sell it at a tag sale. You can also try to sell game systems or games the kids don’t play with any longer as well.
- Babysit or be a mother’s helper. If you have a teenager, who wants to earn extra money, have them check in the area for people who need babysitting or a mother’s helper. Even tweens can occupy a younger child while the parents are home taking care of other things. Check for a free babysitting class in your area if your child lacks the experience.
- Lemonade stand or baked goods. If you plan on having a garage sale, let the kids set out a table and sell lemonade or baked goods. This can also teach a valuable lesson in money management.
There are a lot of different ways to make and save money this summer. You should keep track of what you’re spending and earning throughout the summer months to understand better where the money is going. Most importantly, have fun with the options you choose and make fun and money at the same time!
Ellen LaFleche-Christian is a busy mom of an 18-year-old son and 23-year-old daughter. She owns 5 blogs and is addicted to social media. She believes that it doesn’t have to be difficult to lead a healthy life. She shares simple healthy living tips to show busy women how to lead fulfilling lives. Go visit her site at Confessions of an Overworked Mom