We all have some bad habits when it comes to money and your budget, but the good news is, you can change them. You can start by breaking lifelong patterns with a few simple strategies below:
Budgeting Tip 1# Write down expenses
It’s almost impossible to stick to a budget if you don’t know where your money is going. The small things we forget such as a morning coffee or parking receipt can eat into your budget over time.
For a month, make the habit of writing everything down (or entering into your smart phone) and update your budget accordingly.
Budgeting Tip #2 Don’t impulse buy
Chocolates at the service station, takeaway coffees at your local cafe and checkout items especially if made weekly add up quickly as well. These small purchases once a week, can cost you $8 a month which is $100 a year. Removing the impulse buys can save you hundreds of dollars in the long run.
Budgeting Tip #3 Don’t bust your budget
We all have budget blow outs. You go for dinner and it turns into drinks after. A shopping trip ends in purchasing additional items. Once in a while life happens, but if this is a regular occurrence make a shift:
If you know you have a tendency to buy more than just one thing when you go to the store, or friends change their plans, either avoid these activities or create a bigger budget ahead of time.
Budgeting Tip #4 Set Clear Goals
Having a goal of “I’m going to save” without defining how much and by when makes it hard for the goal to happen. Set realistic goals with a specific and detailed action plan. As an example, instead of saying “I’ll save money”, say that “I’ll increase my superannuation contribution by $2,000 a year”. Instead of “I’ll spend less”, say “I’ll cut $30 a week from my grocery bill” or “I’ll only buy one takeaway coffee a week”.
Budgeting Tip #5 Make things simple
Budgeting doesn’t need to be complicated. You can simplify it by not using elaborate systems or special budgeting tools. A budget can be as simple as a running total of your expenses using your smart phone giving you the freedom to update and adjust your budget regularly.
These budgeting tips can assist you to realign your budget and financial goals.
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