Many of us aren’t born with the skills to accurately maintain our finances and with unexpected life events happening all the time, our financial structure tends to fall apart. It’s not always as simple as paying your bills on time each month, especially during times when you have more month than money. With some quick and easy budgeting tips, you can begin to put your finances back on the right path.
Here’s some quick and easy tips to get you started TODAY!
Tip #1: Limit spending on eating out
Many of us tend to eat out a lot. You may not even realize how much is being spent on eating out, especially when it’s a minimal amount each trip. It may seem like just 5 bucks on a Starbucks coffee or just a 6 dollar burger from McDonald’s, but over the course of a month, those small purchases can add up! Try making your own coffee at home or taking your lunch to work. The savings you get over time from these changes can be used towards paying off a bill or saving for a vacation.
Tip#2: Remember to Pay Yourself First
When we get our paychecks sometimes we can just spend, spend, spend before we put anything aside for ourselves. You may have some financial goals that you would like to achieve or something that you would like to save towards. Paying yourself first gives you that opportunity to reach that goal. Instead of letting it just be a dream that you can’t grasp, start putting action towards it to make it happen. Put aside $5 every paycheck or more into a saving account or piggy bank that you don’t touch. If you use online banking, you can easily have a certain amount of money transferred into a savings account automatically each month so that you don’t even have to think about it. Make it an amount that is easy for you to set aside each month, but don’t be cheap! Stretch yourself and you will be able to reap the rewards down the road!
Tip#3 Pay with cash
It’s easy to charge that credit card or swipe the debit card for every transaction until you realize you overspent. If it’s difficult to keep track of daily spending, begin carrying cash and only limiting your spending to the cash you have on hand. When we were younger many of us had an allowance, whether our parents gave it to us or we earned it by doing chores around the house. We got to spend it on toys and games and candy but once it was gone, it was gone! A great way to budget daily spending is by putting ourselves on an allowance. This is something that is outside of monthly bills. You can budget an amount like $20 a week for spending on fast food or going to the movies or personal wants. But if you’re able to save that allowance each week, you can treat yourself to a nice dinner out for two or put more money towards your goals.
Tip #4 Stop Spending Money You Don’t Have
This may seem like a no brainer, but countless and countless amounts of people charge everything to a credit card each and everyday. This is how many people get into debt and this debt creates large amount of bills that get harder and harder to pay off. Credit cards can eat up more of your hard earned money if they aren’t paid off in full every month. If you have credit card debt, STOP using them to pay for things, especially things that aren’t essential to your everyday needs. Stopping the use of credit card spending, will not only keep you from falling further into debt but will also allow you to live within your means.
Tip #5 Changing Your Mindset
Remember that finances don’t change overnight and depending on your financial situation, it may take some time to get your finances where you want them to be. So you must change your mindset from a spender to being a budgeter. When you feel like spending money on something that you don’t really need, remember the goals that you are trying to achieve from budgeting in the first place. And remember to be Patient! It may seem like saving 5 dollars here and there isn’t much but it will add up. And overtime you will see a significant change. Allow time for this process to happen and you will soon be reaping the benefits of all your hard budgeting work.