If you are just starting out financially and interested in taking control of your personal finances you have probably realized that most experts would recommend creating and then adhering to a personal budget as a first step.

Creating a budget is hard work and often just completing this step can be a real challenge for many people. As it is without a doubt the most important step in a financial plan it is imperative to have one in order to be successful at managing your money.

Because understanding why you are doing something as opposed to just knowing you have to do something can make all the difference, this article will outline ten important reasons behind having a budget and hopefully provide the context necessary to help you take action.

10 Reasons to have (and follow!) a budget:

1) It is the best way to control your spending – you will be watching it all the time.

2) It will show you what you are spending more money on than you thought.

3) It is an excellent communication tool to discuss money with spouse/significant other.

4) It can help you save by budgeting in your 'savings'.

5) It will make you think twice before making a purchase potentially saving you money.

6) It will help you identify your purchases that are 'needs' from those that are 'wants'.

7) It can be used in conjunction with a cash flow statement to provide an overall picture of your spending.

8) It can be used to help you identify if you can afford a certain purchase.

9) It can help you identify leaks in your spending.

1 10) It will keep you on task financially.

The first reason listed is the most important one of all. Financial success to most can be simply described as the ability to spend less than you earn. Having savings is something everyone desires and a budget is a tried and true tool to help you achieve this. Savings can empower you by providing choice. When you have money you have choices. You also have a financial safety net and that is very important!

All the reasons listed are related to gaining control of spending and highlight how a budget can be used to help resolve or avoid some of the common spending mistakes that many people make. Other techniques can be used to implement some of the reasons such as: keeping a card in your wallet that reminds you to consider if what you are about to purchase is a need or a want, or leaving your credit cards at home. Because everyone is unique in what method works best to control their spending an all-in-one budget is a great solution.

Perhaps you have your own reasons different from those listed about for creating and adhering to a budget. Whatever they are all that is important is that you have a budget in place and it is helping you achieve your financial goals one dollar at a time.