For some, “budget” is a dreaded word. I encourage customers to think of it as a positive way to plan for the future and pay yourself first.
Paying yourself first lets you save towards major goals, avoid high cost borrowing, and prepare for unexpected emergencies. Get started with the following tips:
- Look at income coming in versus expenses going out. Go over your monthly checking statement to understand your reality of spending. Check out Peoples My Fianance Tool in your Online Banking account. It allows you to get a snapshot of your spending by categories.
- Plug your money leaks. Little things like an extra cup of coffee, unused gym memberships, more cable channels than you really need, or even impulse buys can really add up. Shave off what you can.
- Apply the Need vs Want test. Before you buy, ask yourself, “Do I need this or do I want it?” “What will I need to give up or put off by buying this now?”
- Commit to change. Even if it’s just one little thing it can have a huge impact, and once you start it’s easier to keep going. Try using cash envelopes for each of your spending categories, or your checking account register to track expenses.
- Spend at or below your means. Create a spending plan where you spend less than you make, then put the difference in your savings account or pay down debt.
Take control of your budget and enjoy the positive changes it could make in your life!