I have read several other books on saving money, and one thing that many of them have in common is that they are based on American prices and savings. Not that the books were not useful at all, but they often contain information that is useless for Canadians. Sarah Deveau ran into this same problem and that was when she decided to write The Money Smart Mom. Like many families, we live off a fairly low income so when Sarah contacted and asked if I would like to review her book I was more than happy to accept it.
Money Smart Mom: Financially Fit Parenting is an invaluable resource for families of all types. You might still be on the fence, wondering how you’ll ever be able to afford children. You might have kids already and don’t understand why you’re still living paycheque to paycheque like you did in college. Whether you have kids yet or are still in the planning stages, are in debt up to your eyeballs or just barely keeping up, this book can help.
For some families, this book will provide them with the information they need to dig out of their debt, enabling them more freedom in their financial decision making. For others, it will help them manage having a one-income household. It might provide enough information to guide families in finding the extra money to contribute to an RESP. It may give others strategies for handling money without fighting, even if their earning, spending and saving doesn’t change a nickel.
Sarah's book covers everything from deciding when to conceive, child care and birthdays to government benefits, writing your will and divorce. Tips from moms across the country can be found throughout, including different scenarios and opinions and each chapter ends with a final thought allowing you to choose what is best for you and your family. One of my favorite sections of the book mentioned acquiring used items from yard sales, freecycle and samples. I have personally been doing this ever since I moved out of my moms house, but have met many people who think negatively about it. I thought the information and resources on meal planning and shopping to be very helpful to me and I was happy to see that the final chapter lists several more pages of resources that could be helpful to Canadians as well! I also liked that the book is organized in such a way that with a quick glance at the contents you can easily find the page you might need, instead of having to read cover to cover.
Do you know someone who is struggling? Or are you yourself finding it hard to save money and get out of debt? You can buy your own copy or read a sample of helpful money saving tips on her website, Money Smart Mom