Deciding to consolidate your debts is an excellent choice for many individuals, but making that decision is only the first step, learning how to manage your finances is the next step in ultimately becoming debt
free. Budget planning can help you identify how you spend your money and where you may be over spending. The goal in preparing a budget is to insure that your monthly expenses do not exceed your monthly income.
Below are some tips to assist you in starting off the New year on the right financial foot:
Tips on Budgeting
- Write down your total monthly net income. Include all sources of income such as, salary, child support, pension, etc. Next, list all your monthly expenses, including your house or rent payment, food, gas, utilities, credit card payments, etc. Then subtract your monthly expenses from your total monthly income.
- Look for areas where you can cut back and save some money.
- Use the information to set a budget for yourself. Include approximately 5% to 10% for savings.
- Review your budget on a monthly basis to determine how things are going. You may discover an area where your are overspending and can then adjust it accordingly.
Tips on Saving Money
- Cut back home energy consumption by turning off lights when you are not using them and placing an air conditioner on a timer. You can also remove unnecessary phone options to cut down costs. Contact your local utility service providers and ask about their budgeting plans and programs to help you manage these expenses.
- Shop at outlet or wholesale clubs. When you do shop, use lists to avoid impulse purchases.
- Try bringing your lunch to work instead of having to buy everyday.
Money Ning thoughts: Great advice. How many of these do you do already? I think I will implement the “list” advice for my wife so we don’t buy too much immediately.