A mom-of-two has revealed how she managed to save enough money to buy her children a home after going through a divorce that saw her struggling to make ends meet.
Lisa Samalonis, 53, from New Jersey, was living paycheck to paycheck after she and her husband of 13 years went through a divorce.
Hoping to provide her two sons, aged six and eight, with a steady, post-divorce home as they were now being raised by a single parent, the mom began to play a game of ‘financial chess’ and became determined to gain better control of her money.
Now Lisa has revealed how she was able to do it by adopting just three easy steps, including changing her mindset and going on a ‘credit card fast.’
Get to planning! Lisa gained financial freedom by reviewing her finances weekly
A mom-of-two has revealed how she managed to save enough money to buy her kids a home after going through a divorce that saw her struggling to make ends meet (stock image)
While she was still married Lisa decided to have a look at all of her financial problems. With every bill she went through she felt more and more hopeless.
She told Insider that ‘careless spending coupled with other factors eventually led to a legal separation.’
Lisa Samalonis always asked her self if she ‘needed’ the item
After the divorce, Lisa decided to start with making a plan for how she would move forward financially.
The mom was self-employed so she didn’t have a steady income. She was getting paid ‘irregularly’ from various clients.
In the past, whenever she got paid she would buy things she wanted first, such as personal items, dining out, and entertainment.
But at that time, she was coming up short on bills. So after the separation, when she got her paychecks, she put money aside and paid the bills immediately before diving into the other funds.
She created a monthly expenses list that she checked after every purchase she made.
Lisa always asked her self if she ‘needed’ the item and if she was able to find it for a ‘cheaper price elsewhere.’
Now, the mom-of-two says she keeps her plans in motion by using a zero-based budgeting app in ‘which your income minus your expenses equals zero by the end of the month — such as YNAB or EveryDollar.’
She noted that while she still enjoys the occasional meal out or beauty appointment, she plans for it.
Ditch the credit card! The mom-of-two went on a ‘credit card fast’ to avoid overspending
Lisa knew she needed to stop reaching for her credit card when she didn’t have the money (stock image)
Next up, Lisa knew she had to do a ‘credit card fast.’
She explained that whenever she was tight on money she would always swipe her card and then when the bill came she found herself struggling to pay it.
Lisa knew she needed to stop reaching for her credit card when she didn’t have the money.
She explained that for three years she only used a debit card or cash because she was afraid of it getting out of hand when it came to her credit card.
The mom knew that the only way she could limit her spending was to cut out the culprit, even if it was for a limited amount of time.
Now, the mom-of-two allows herself to use a credit card, but makes sure to track and allocate the money for purchases on her zero-based budgeting app.
She also revealed that she no longer pays the minimum amount towards the bill when using a credit card, but makes sure to pay the entire balance to keep her spending in check.
Get to reading! Lisa studied up on all things budgeting and didn’t lose sight of her goals when she got off track
Lisa read dozens of personal finance articles and books to understand how to reach her goals better (stock image)
The mom-of-two knew that her journey to financial freedom would be an uphill battle so she had to try her best not to lose track of what was important.
Lisa read dozens of personal finance articles and books to understand how to reach her goals better.
She spent her free time studying up on blogs, books and articles, and even listened to money podcasts.
The mom began taking on more freelance work to be able to put aside some money every month in case of an emergency.
The practice came in handy when her air-conditioning unit broke one summer.
Although she couldn’t afford the price of the new unit, she financed it and reminded herself that setbacks happen.
She explained that if she had not set the money aside and planned accordingly she would have been in a different position.
To stay focused, the mom reviewed her goals and finances every week. She kept her goals in mind and always thought about providing her children with a steady home to stay consistent with her money-saving practices.
In the past, 37-year-old Rachel Covert, from Massachusetts, shared her money-saving tips that helped her retire at age 36.
She revealed she followed the 4-per-cent rule – that sees her never spending more than four per cent of her assets in a given year – in a bid to live her life to the fullest and invested in low-cost index funds.
Dyana King, a 30-year-old from Arkansas, shared that six years ago she saw herself strained with $34,907 in debt and used the snowball method to pay it all off.
The snowball method is the practice of listing out every debt you owe and paying off the smallest debt first before working to pay off the next smallest.