In theory, staying on budget should be easy enough. You sit down, understand how much you can spend and then refuse to spend more than that. Of course, this is much easier said than done and most of us would welcome all the help we can get. Whether you’re making a budget for the first time or just want a checklist for your current one, the following tips are important ones.
Always include a “savings” portion in your budget. Perhaps you already knew/do this. However, what many people forget to do is to treat it like an obligation. This means that your savings isn’t an account that receives money, so long as you don’t need it for something else. That mindset will end up leaving you without any savings. Instead, look at it as the priority it is.
At the same time, you need to give yourself a bit of an allowance too. This is money you can spend on just about anything (stay away from bad debt or something that will cost more over time, like a pet) without feeling any guilt for it. Just like savings, you should treat this amount like a real priority and not a reward if you have met a certain goal.
Over time, you’ll probably realize that you can only bring in so much money. That being the case, you need to cut spending if you want to have more of it on hand to work with. Perhaps the best way to do this is by reviewing your bank statement. Chances are you’ll find an area you’re spending a lot of money on and shouldn’t be. Do this every week and you’ll definitely notice more capital in your account.
Though the above three tips may not feel groundbreaking, they’ve helped people a lot over the years and can do the same for you.