Money and Relationships

7 Need-to-Know Financial Tips for Single Mothers

June 27, 2023
Finances are a challenge for many single moms. Today, I'm sharing 7 financial tips for single mothers to turn money from a source of stress to a tool of empowerment.
Britt and Laurie-Anne two women laughing and looking at their computers on a couch in a well-styled living room
Britt & Laurie Anne
Two female investors in their 30s with a collective net wealth of over $6 million+
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Motherhood is amazing.

But it isn’t always easy. That’s especially true for single mothers.

One of the leading challenges single moms face? Financial instability.

According to the latest U.S. census, the poverty rate for single-mother families is 23%, nearly five times more than the rate for married-couple families.

But just because it’s a challenge doesn’t mean it’s impossible. I’ve helped thousands of single moms achieve financial peace of mind they never thought possible.

So, for all my single moms out there, here are 7 tips to turn money from a source of stress to a tool of empowerment.

1) Rethink your money mindset

What unconscious associations do you have with money? Do you have a positive relationship to money? Is money a source of stress or a source of joy? Is it something you feel this push/pull relationship with?

If you want your finances to improve, the place to start is working on your relationship to money.

The money mindset shift that made me a millionaire!

2) Work through the wealth-building roadmap

We created our signature wealth-build roadmap to help you move effortlessly through the process of building wealth.

  1. Spend less than you make every month
  2. Pay off high-interest rate debt
  3. Save up an emergency fund
  4. Save for retirement
  5. Invest

As a mom, you’re probably used to prioritizing your children’s needs above your own. But when it comes to finances, that won’t necessarily be best for you and your family in the long run.

When it comes to finances, take care of yourself first — save for your retirement before your kid’s education. There are loans for education, but there are no loans for retirement!

Learn more about our wealth-building roadmap!

3) Understand your taxes as a single parent

Here are a few tax tips if you’re filing as a single mom:

  1. File as the head of household. Filing as head of household usually gives you a lower tax rate than if you file as single or married filing separately. If you earn at least 50% of the household income, you qualify as head of household.
  2. Establish qualifying dependents. In general, if your child lives with you the majority of the year, they qualify as a dependent. But even if they don’t, they can still qualify as a dependent if they meet certain criteria.
  3. Claim the child tax credit. A single mom making less than $200,000 can claim a $2,000 child tax credit for each child.
  4. Deduct childcare expenses. If your dependent child is 12 years old or younger, and you pay for daycare while you work or look for work, you may be eligible for the Child and Dependent Care Credit. To qualify you'll need to have earned income, be a full-time student, or be physically or mentally unable to care for yourself.

This was a quick overview, but here’s an article where you can learn more about taxes as a single parent and how to qualify for certain exemptions and credits.

4) Get help with childcare

Check with your employer to see if they offer a Dependent Care Account. This is a government-backed subsidy program designed to make tax savings on your childcare expenses.

5) Increase your income

This is often one of the biggest tools we have to improve our finances. So, if it's been more than 12 months since you've gotten a raise, go ask for it.

Not sure how to ask for a raise? 9 tips to get the raise you deserve!

If you have recently gotten for a raise, but you think you could contribute even more in your workplace and become an even more valuable player, put a plan together to do that and discuss it with your boss.

You can also start to look for alternative ways to make money.

If you can't get a raise and you don't have any capacity to work more, get creative with your financial solutions. See if there are ways you can trade your time for other services.

For example, if your child does gymnastics, maybe you can help out in the office or as an extra support during class in exchange for discounted classes.

6) Automate finances where you can

Set up auto payments for things like your water bill, your mortgage, or your rent.

After you've decided on a budget, set up automatic savings so money moves from your checking account to your savings account. That way, you're not tempted to spend money you should be saving and it's one less thing for you to have to think about every single month.

Automate as much of your finances as you can — you’ll thank yourself later.

7) Create a support system

Having a strong, supportive community around you makes all the difference in achieving your goals. That’s why we build community into the Million Dollar Year and offer opportunities for people to find accountability buddies…because having someone next to you makes challenges much easier to overcome.

Hopefully, you already have a network of people you can lean on. Someone you can carpool with, someone who will watch the kids if you have to work late or just need some time off…

But find someone – or several people – who will specifically help you achieve your financial goals. Someone who can offer advice or will help you stay focused and accountable.

You don’t have to go through this alone.

How to manage your money in a way that feels good for YOU!

I hope this helps you create financial peace of mind and achieve your money goals.

If you want to learn about how to manage you money in a way that feels natural for you, check out our free masterclass, Think Like an Investor, where we’ll teach you our signature Aligned Money Method for pain-free money management as well as the secrets of building wealth through investing.

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