How To Survive Financially As A Single Mom
Almost two years ago, after I got out of an emotionally abusive marriage, I tried to figure out how to survive financially as a single mom. It was scary. I had a 3-month-old and the thought of working long hours and putting her in daycare made my heart ache. Not to mention that when I looked up the cost of daycare, I couldn’t wrap my head around how I could afford it. I would literally be working just to pay the daycare bill and that was not the life I wanted for her or myself.
An Idea Is Born
Something needed to change so I wasn’t stuck struggling in the U.S. as a single mom. After some soul searching and discovering the term “Worldschooling”, I realized it would be cheaper for me to end the lease on our condo, sell all our possessions, and slow travel full-time.
Who would have thought that traveling would be cheaper than living in my hometown of Austin, TX? The fact is that it is. We have now been traveling full-time for over a year and a half and it was the best financial decision I have ever made. Now, I teach other moms in my Single Moms Do Travel Mentoring Program how to make this life if travel and freedom a reality.
Did You Say Murder?
The number one way to survive financially as a single mom is to get the hell out of the U.S. and here is why.
It is expensive as hell. Yes, there are some cheaper cities and states out there but the quality of life and safety in those cities tends to be on the lower side. Daycare alone would murder the typical single mom budget. Did you know that in 2012, the average annual income for single parents was $25, 493. In another country, that could go far.
However, in the good ol’ USA, you will be struggling for sure without assistance from the government or better yet even with assistance from the government on that income. Daycare alone could run you $1000 or more a month and that is for one child. Do you know how much I pay for childcare here in beautiful Albania? I pay my amazing nanny $4.66 an hour. My daughter gets amazing care and 1-on-1 attention for this price.
A Little Reality Check
I know a lot of you single moms out there were not expecting me to say traveling is how to survive financially as a single mom but it is.
You can save so much by living and traveling outside of the USA. How much are you paying for rent right now? How much are you paying for electricity and wifi? How about cable? Daycare? Groceries? I pay $435 a month for my 2 bedroom apartment in Albania. That includes everything like furniture, wifi, and electricity. That is all my housing expenses.
Consider The Possibilities
If I had stayed in the U.S., I would have been working 40 hours or more a week just to put my youngest in daycare and to keep a roof over our heads. There wouldn’t be much extra. Imagine eliminating the crippling financial stress of the typical single parent household. Imagine starting over somewhere new and actually being able to spend time with your babies. Believe it or not, there are a lot of us out there and I ’ve had the privilege of meeting quite a few on our journey.
This is how to survive financially as a single mom. If you have at least $1700 a month in income that is location independent and are legally able to travel for long stretches with your child, then get out of the U.S. That is a good amount to live on in so many other countries. You can also easily make this amount online in various ways all while building your own online business and having a high-quality life.
Some moms I have met during our travels teach for VIPKid or Cambly like myself while some create their own products or services. You can also look into affiliate marketing as an easy way to make money online. I swear this life of freedom is attainable for so many people. It is more attainable than trying to live a good life as a single mom in the U.S.
[affiliate disclosure: I may get a small commission if you make a purchase through the links on this page at no additional cost to you]
I am so thankful for the life I live now. I am happier. My kids are happier. In fact, I am doing so well, that I am losing my ability to relate to the single mom struggle. It seems so foreign to me now. Yes, I have days where I am tired and exhausted from my role as a single mom but those days are few and far between.
You too can have this life. I swear it. Start by changing your mindset around life and money. I highly suggest reading the book You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero. She will help get your mindset right and give you the confidence you need. After reading that book, make sure to read her other book You Are A Badass At Making Money.
I want to hear from you. Are you trying to figure out how to survive financially as a single mom or are you curious about living abroad? Let me know in the comments. Also, if you are interested in being inspired by other traveling single moms, make sure to join my Facebook group Single Moms Do Travel.