Can You Afford to Be a Stay at Home Mom? Here's How to Find Out!

If you're dreaming of being a stay at home mom (most of us do at some point), follow these steps to see if you have enough money to turn your dream into reality (20 Photos)

Kathy Ehrich Dowd on Nov 18, 2011 at 6:35PM

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Know What You Spend

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a Kathy Ehrich Dowd on Nov 7, 2011 at 4:32PM

Before you figure out a one-income family budget, make sure you have an accurate handle on how much you’re spending and what your expenses are now. Deborah Owens, wealth coach and author of A Purse of Your Own, recommends keeping a log of everything you buy -- and how you pay for it -- over a 30-day period. “People are often very surprised by what they discover going through this tracking exercise,” says Owens. “Often people think they spend $40 a week on lunch, and are floored when they find they’re spending $100 or more.” To get started, keep a little notebook in your purse, or download a free mobile app from Mint.com and do your best to include everything -- even a pack of gum.

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