We all have need for a budget at one time or another, and it pays to revisit our financial goals on a regular basis in order to make sure we’re staying on track.
So when you’re budgeting there are a few things to remember in order to make sure you get the most out of your budget. Here are some tips to help make a better budget.
Make A Better Budget
1. Know your budget-busters and stay away!
If this is the mall don’t go, if it is QVC, turn it off, if is buying stuff online, throw your computer out the window!! ;) . Know where your weaknesses lie, and avoid those places.
2. Wait before purchasing.
Never buy large purchase items with out waiting a week or two to really be sure that it is the best use of your money. Sometimes having that cooling off period will help you to realize that you really don’t need that thing you thought you couldn’t do without.
It makes it a whole heckuva lot more fun to give if you have the money sitting there ready to be spent. Making giving into a budget line item and save up so that you can give freely and often!
It is not a diet. Quit telling yourself that budgeting is just like a diet for you checkbook. In my opinion, the reasons that most budgets fail is because they are out of balance. Fun should be budgeted for. Make a line item for “fun money” or “blow money” and don’t forget to spend it!
5. Snowball it.
Once a debt is paid off, take that amount and either apply it to another debt (aka Debt Snowball) or to something fun (vacation fund, etc.) Make a plan for your money, otherwise it will just disappear!
6. Create a misc. budgeting category.
No matter how many categories you create, you can bet that you will have expenses come up that won’t fall into any of them. This is why it is a great idea to have a backup called miscellaneous.
7. Have fun money.
Have some money given to each family member that doesn’t need to be tracked and can be used for whatever he/she wants. It will make you feel less like you’re still able to live freely, and the budget isn’t a jail sentence.
8. Combine budgeting categories.
Try combining categories to simplify the system. For example if you have money budgeted for car maintenance and car insurance, try putting them together in the same category.
9. Set money aside monthly for infrequent bills.
Just because a bill isn’t paid monthly doesn’t mean that it can’t be budgeted for monthly. If you pay car insurance every 6 months, just take that bill and divide by 6, viola! Now add that amount to your monthly budget, and when the next bill comes due, the money will be sitting there waiting!
10. Try budgeting with Capital One 360 or another online bank.
This way you are earning interest on each one of your budgeting categories. Small amounts add up quick.
Feel free to share your budgeting tips below!