“Being successful at budgeting starts with having a positive attitude,” said Jennifer Panther, certified financial counselor, at our recent Know Your Dough workshop on budgeting. “It takes a few months to get the budget down pat. You can’t give up.”
These tips can help you budget money better this year:
- “Nerds” and “Free Spirits” Unite – Nerds track every penny; free spirits spend until the money is gone. Host a family meeting to discuss your budget expectations, and financial goals. Discuss each budget category – groceries, dining out, transportation, debt, etc. and how you can reduce.
- Track expenses – Try: Keeping all receipts and reviewing weekly; Inputting expenses into a spreadsheet or journal; using an envelope with the exact amount budgeted for each category, or using an online tool such as Family Trust online banking with Personal Finance Manager.
- When the bottom lines aren’t equal – When your expenses are more than your income (this may happen the first time you create a budget), discuss what it will take to bring your budget into the positive. Consider how you can cut expenses or increase your income.
- Debt Snowball – Once you’ve listed your debt from the smallest balance to the largest, pay as much as you can on the smallest debt. Pay the minimum on other debts. Once the smallest debt is paid in full, repeat the cycle until all debt is paid.
- Plan for “Budget Bombs” – Unexpected repairs, medical bills, and other expenses are budget bombs. To prepare, create an emergency fund. Also remember to include gift and vacation expenses in your budget.
Family Trust is committed to helping you achieve financial success. That’s one benefit of banking locally. Stories shared as part of our Banking Local Makes a Difference program demonstrate this commitment. We invite you to experience the difference by visiting a branch.
Join us for the next “Know Your Dough: Improve Your Credit Score":/advice-and-education/advice-education/workshops/know-your-dough workshop February 10 at 6:30pm. It’s free and open to the public at our Fort Mill Branch.