11 Easy Budget Tips
Do you have a monthly budget or do you know how to save money? If you answered no, this article will help you. Many people don’t have a budget, and they get into trouble by overspending. So, if you can’t figure out where your money goes each month, a budget can help. This doesn’t have to be a long, drawn out process either. It can be as simple as following some easy budget tips. Avoid bad credit card habits. This article will list 11 easy budget tips that will get you on your way to healthier finances.
How to Save Money 11 Ways for an Easy Budget
1. Enlist Free Apps
Did you know that there are apps to help you make an easy budget plan? These sites are designed to make budgeting a pretty painless process, and many are free. So, all you have to do is create an account and plug your finances in. Credit card companies offer credit card alert apps to monitor your spending. These various software apps will calculate your expenses and create an easy budget for you.
2. Switch out Luxury Items
Sure, having a huge cable package is a good thing in theory. But, how many of those channels do you actually watch? If you’re like most people, only a fraction of them. You can free up more money each month by dropping your expensive cable package. For example, the average cable bill is $100 to $140 per month. If you drop this and purchase Amazon Prime, Hulu Plus, and Netflix, it’ll cost you around $32. So, this can easily save you anywhere from $68 to $108 and up per month. You’ll still get great shows, but at a fraction of the cost.
3. Save Every Receipt
If you really want to know where your money is going, keep every receipt. If the vendor doesn’t offer one, ask for it. At the end of the month go through each of them. This will give you a good idea on where you can trim expenses. It’s also an easy way to see how much you’re spending frivolously. This is a step toward setting up your easy budget plan. For example, you buy a $7.00 cup of coffee Monday through Friday. By the end of the month, you’ve spent $140, and if you get two per day, double it. That is $280 you could save by just making coffee at home and bringing it with you.
4. Follow the 30 Day Rule
Many people see something they want, and they buy it straight away without a thought to their budget. Furthermore, this instant gratification buying habit is an incredibly easy way to overspend. So, institute the 30-day rule. If you see something you think you have to have, put off buying it for 30 days. At the end of the 30 days, if you’ve saved the money, buy it. You’ll be surprised at how often you choose not to purchase the item you ‘had to have’ a month ago.
5. Consider a Credit Card
If you don’t have a credit card, and you have trouble tracking your spending, this is a tool that can help you. If you want to know how much you spent on a certain thing each month, you’ll have the information immediately. However, only use a credit card if you pay the balance off each month. Filling out a new credit card application isn’t meant to be used to buy something you can’t afford otherwise. It’s a convenient way to track your spending. Also, if it’s a rewards card, you may earn cash back. If you’re afraid you’ll overspend, opt out of this option or try a secured card.
6. Implement the 50/20/30 Plan
Another popular tool for an easy budget is the 50/20/30 plan. Set up your budget, so 50 percent goes into necessary expenses like bills, loan payments, and mortgages. The 20 percent will go into long term savings like a retirement fund. Finally, the 30 percent will go to lifestyle choices. This can be an excellent start if you’re having trouble deciding how much you should spend on easy budget categories.
7. Start Slow
Starting an easy budget might be a rude wake-up call. You’ll most likely have greater success if you start small. Track your spending for a week in the beginning. Once the week is up, look over what you could cut out to reduce costs. Plan to cut out the unnecessary expenses for the second week. Once the second week is up, repeat the process. At the end of the first month, see what you managed to save. Later consider starting an emergency fund. Take it a week at a time until it becomes a habit.
8. Create a Long Term Goal or Reward
You’re more likely to stay on your easy budget plan if you have a goal. For example, say you have a trip scheduled for six months out, and you want more spending money. All of the money you save from you easy budget can go into a short term deposit account. This way, that money is untouchable for another month. You can deposit new money each month, and roll the deposit over. Right before you leave for your trip, pull the money out.
9. Shop With a Grocery List
When you go to the grocery store, make a list and stick to it. One of the quickest ways to blow your easy budget is to overspend in the grocery store. If you stick to your list, you’ll cut down on your costs. Also, go once a week at maximum and buy in bulk. If you purchase meat products in bulk, you can freeze the extras.
Couponing has fallen largely out of favor for the past few years. However, it is an easy way to trim your expenses. You can even download and print digital coupons for an added convenience, and there are apps as well. This may take a little practice, but it’s an easy budget option that you can utilize. The best part is that there are coupons for almost anything you want to buy. You can even research your coupons by brand and see what there is to offer.
11. Volunteer at Local Festivals or Events
If you like to get out and go to your local festivals, volunteer. Chances are, they’re looking for volunteers to help set up and staff the events. These volunteers usually get access to the venue or event for free or at a significantly reduced cost. This way, you’ll still be able to enjoy the festival while saving money. The easiest way to find out about volunteering is to call the organizers. They’ll be happy to fill you in on any volunteer opportunities and perks.
Follow These Easy Budget Tips and Create New Healthy Finacial Habits
In conclusion, this article has listed the top 11 tips for making and staying on and easy budget plan. If you follow them, you’ll have a greater chance of succeeding. Many people in their twenties overspend. Also, people in relationships tend to overspend. You can slowly improve your financial habits. You may backslide, but as long as you keep trying, you’ll learn healthy financial habits.
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