Budgeting Your Money
Creating a Budget
Do you know where your money goes? What did you buy today? Do you track your expenses?
A budget is an assessment of your income and expenses over a period of time. A budget can be made for a person, family, group of people or just about anything that makes and spends money. If you have extra funds left over from your budget that means your expenses do not exceed your income, which puts you in a very good financial position. A lack of funds in your budget means your expenses do exceed your income. While a balanced budget or breaking even means that your income matches your expenses to the dollar.
Budgeting helps you live within your financial means as well as help you accomplish your long and short term goals. Here are a few easy steps to help you budget better:
Set Realistic Goals:
- Setting goals will help you make better spending choices.
- Ask yourself: What do I want my bank account to look like in 6 months?
- Set a goal and start there.
Total all your income and list your expenses:
- You know how much you earn each paycheck, but do you know where it all goes?
- You can find out simply by tracking your spending.
- Save your receipt and at the end of the month write down everyone.
- You will be surprised by your spending habits by the time you’re done.
Separate your needs from your wants:
- Ask yourself: Do I want this or do I need it?
- Will buying this affect me reaching my financial goal or can I live without it?
- Make your priorities clear and decision making will be a lot easier.
Cut unnecessary expenses:
- Cutting-back on expenses like eating out for lunch everyday can save you more than you imagine. For example:
- Janet buys her lunch every day and on average she spends $8 on lunch each day X 5 days a week = $40 a week
- $40 a week X 4 weeks in a month = $160 a month
Here is an easy way to cut back:
- Bring your lunch a few days a week. This can free up funds to go towards other goals.
- In Janet’s case she can save on average $64 – $96 a month just bringing her lunch 2 to 3 days a week!!
Create your budget: