5 tips to creating a personal budget that you can stick to

IMG_3547Creating a budget for some can be a daunting task. Sticking to it can be even harder. Here are 5 tips to help you stick to your budget.

Shorten your budget time period. Adjust your budget time period to reflect your paycheck. For example, most people get paid biweekly. Create a budget for two weeks. A month is a long time to wait to assess how you are doing. Two weeks isn’t very long to commit and you will likely gain momentum from how easy it feels.

Use cash when possible. It’s no secret that paying with cash hurts more than swiping your debit card. We currently use cash for food and personal allowances. Boy does it hurt when we pull out that $25 to pay for one meal eating out. By using cash, you really get a sense of how much you are actually spending opposed to just swiping your card and being surprised by how much you over spent at the end of your budget period.

Give yourself a personal allowance. Spending $10 -$20 here and there for things like new sunglasses, a new shirt, gadgets and books can break the bank if you let it. Include a personal allowance for each member of your household in your budget. By doing this you set a limit on how much can be spent on these personal wants. If there’s a pricier thing or gadget you have your heart set on, save up your personal allowance for that item. You’ll have time to determine if you really need or want it and you’ll appreciate it more in the long run.

Limit eating out as much as possible. This one is a bit challenging for us! It’s amazing how much money you can save if you cook at home. It’s even more amazing how much more money you’ll save if you actually eat your leftovers. I’m working on this one! Take the time to plan your meals and only spend money on food you are going to eat. If you are like me, there is way too much food going to waste in our home. By taking the time to eat at home, your bank account and your body will thank you!

Change your mindset. Focus on the end result of sticking to your budget. It’s not about punishing yourself, it’s about freeing yourself. Whether you are trying to get out of debt or are saving for travel, a new car, etc., sticking to your budget will only get you there that much faster.

These are a few tips that ring true to our budget. I’d love to hear if you find these helpful as well as any budgeting tips you may have for me!

 

 

19 Comments

  1. Leah

    Some tips I’ve found helpful:
    1. Meal Planning
    2. Plan your meals around what’s on sale
    3. Buy groceries for a whole week or two weeks. I had the very bad habit of running to the store every couple of days and found myself buying things I didn’t need.
    4. Sale all of your old stuff on eBay, FB swap n shops or have a yard sale. Use this money for vacations, new clothes etc.
    4. Let nothing go to waste.
    5. Buy grocery items that can be used for different meals. Example: ten pound bag of potatoes on sale can be used for taco potatoes, regular baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, French fries etc. I know you can get tired of potatoes, but they’ll last awhile and you don’t have to eat them every night !
    6. Purchase a dry erase board that has a calendar so you can write out all your bills and deposits on it for each month. It’s a big one and there’s plenty of room to write in everything. This has helped me a lot! I know some people like spreadsheets on the computer or apps that help you with this, but I prefer something visual right in front of me!
    Sorry …. This is lengthy ! Hope it helps someone!

    • Dianna G.

      Thank you Leah! These are great tips! I’m on a minimalist journey and are already incorporating some of these! Maybe I’ll post some of the results in the future!

    • Dianna G.

      I would be glad to help you! My mom and I own Anchor Tax and Bookkeeping LLC. in Weber City, Va. Call us at 276-690-9138 for an appointment.

  2. Dianna; I enjoyed your blog. Even at my age, 58, I still need reminders and also still need to set those short term goals. I unlike my husband, do not like to eat leftovers. Something I will work on.

    Thanks

  3. Judy

    Loved your tips! And if followed anyone can be successful with their budget. I always do a two week budget, and admit sometimes I fail. My only tip would be to do an occasional reality check. I went through our account for the month of July and was shocked that we had spent over $1600 for entertainment/eating out. Mostly eating out which is always high for us having two big boys (6 ft+) to feed. Agustin was much better, and I’m doing better with the leftovers in Sept.

Leave a Reply to Judy Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *