How often do you budget? Everyone’s preference and practice may vary. What works for you when it comes to budgeting your finances? Putting your budget on paper or in a basic spreadsheet like Excel or Google Sheets is essential if you want a healthy financial future. I keep a journal (budget) of all of my monthly spending. I have various formats and groupings that assist me in keeping everything streamlined. My primary budget consists of our monthly bills, savings, vacation funds, etc. I write how much everything will be for that specific month and how much money will be coming in to pay those monthly bills/expenses. This also helps if one person is responsible for keeping up with the bills in the household… the other person can view the budget at any time.
Creating a detailed budget is key to managing your finances. An accurate monthly budget can help you reach your financial goals, whether you’re saving for a car, buying a home, saving for a vacation, or paying off student loans. By sticking to a budget, you can save thousands of dollars each year and avoid overspending. Budgeting may sound complicated and like a boring task, but it can actually be a very basic personal finance skill. Whether you decide to make your budget generic or detailed to the last dollar, the most important part of budgeting is to put it into practice.
Tracking your spending is essential to managing your budget. Try tracking your spending for a week. Make a journal of everything that you spend money on every day for a whole week. By doing this, you will notice how often you buy that Starbucks coffee or how often you make that trip to the mall or how often you make that Amazon purchase. I’m sure I’m not the only one that has random stuff in my cart waiting to be brought on Amazon, lol. (Or am I… sheesh! Lol) Once you get a visual of what your spending your money on you may be willing and open to cut back on a few areas. In doing this you could save hundreds of dollars!
Some people still reconcile their check books when balancing everything out. Others use apps on their phone to verify what they have spent. While others save their receipts and then check the transactions online for accuracy. We want to reconcile to make sure no one altered the tip at that restaurant we went to last night or that department store didn’t swipe our card for the wrong amount. Overall, you get the point right? Make sure to budget your money to assist with your personal financial management. Track your spending to see where habits and repetition are so that you can make appropriate changes. Last but not least, reconcile your accounts to make sure all of your funds are accounted for on a daily/weekly/ monthly basis.
I’m not going to hold you any longer… try any of the above and see how it puts things in perspective.
Until next time Kings & Queens,