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08.24.2020 / Budgeting « Back to all articles

Budgeting Tools to Manage Your Spending
Budgeting Tools

Managing your spending is the foundation of personal finance. If you spend more than you earn or spend too much on things that are not priorities for you, then your financial situation will never be in line with your goals. For many people, the idea of creating a budget, and sticking to it, seems overwhelming. The truth, though, is that you only need a few simple budgeting tools to get you on your way to financial peace. 

A Way to Track and Categorize Your Spending 

The most obvious reason to create a budget for personal finance is to track your spending and keep it under control. You can find all sorts of budgeting programs with different features and methodologies. However, all you need to start is an expense tracker where you can categorize your purchases so that you can see where your money is going each month. The specific categories are up to you. The main things are to track every cent and to differentiate needs from wants. 

A Method for Forecasting Future Expenses 

When it comes to budgeting for the future, be sure to keep these two categories in mind: emergency funds and sinking funds. If you've never heard of sinking funds before, don't worry. Sinking funds are just money you put away for future, planned expenses. Whereas emergency funds are for unexpected situations, such as sudden unemployment or emergency dental procedures, sinking funds are for things you can anticipate, like getting new tires or paying your car insurance twice per year. 

To add both types of future expenses to your budget, either create one line for emergencies and one for sinking funds or itemize out your sinking funds by type. For example, you could create separate categories for automobile repairs, insurance premiums, holiday gifts, and vacations. Then, when those expenses come up, you won't feel the crunch of not having enough cash flow. 

An Overview of Your Inflows and Outflows 

Another essential budgeting tool is the visualization of how much money is flowing in and out of your accounts each month. Although some months you will spend more than others, you should try to spend less than you earn each month. It's easy to overlook this aspect of budgeting unless you have a way to see your inflows and outflows at a glance. Most budgeting software will include this feature, but if you're using a spreadsheet, it's pretty easy to set up a graph or chart that pulls from each month's data automatically. 

Final Thoughts 

The best budget setup is the one that works for you. The key to managing your spending is that you make a habit of budgeting and tracking your spending. Create a routine for yourself and set up calendar alerts to remind you of which bills are due and when. With practice, your new budgeting routine will put you on your way to financial health. 

09.21.2020 / Borrowing

Requesting Payment Extensions Amid COVID-19
The 2020 pandemic has made even people who have never missed a bill payment start to wonder how to make ends meet. As…

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08.24.2020 / Budgeting « Back to all articles

Budgeting Tools to Manage Your Spending
Budgeting Tools

Managing your spending is the foundation of personal finance. If you spend more than you earn or spend too much on things that are not priorities for you, then your financial situation will never be in line with your goals. For many people, the idea of creating a budget, and sticking to it, seems overwhelming. The truth, though, is that you only need a few simple budgeting tools to get you on your way to financial peace. 

A Way to Track and Categorize Your Spending 

The most obvious reason to create a budget for personal finance is to track your spending and keep it under control. You can find all sorts of budgeting programs with different features and methodologies. However, all you need to start is an expense tracker where you can categorize your purchases so that you can see where your money is going each month. The specific categories are up to you. The main things are to track every cent and to differentiate needs from wants. 

A Method for Forecasting Future Expenses 

When it comes to budgeting for the future, be sure to keep these two categories in mind: emergency funds and sinking funds. If you've never heard of sinking funds before, don't worry. Sinking funds are just money you put away for future, planned expenses. Whereas emergency funds are for unexpected situations, such as sudden unemployment or emergency dental procedures, sinking funds are for things you can anticipate, like getting new tires or paying your car insurance twice per year. 

To add both types of future expenses to your budget, either create one line for emergencies and one for sinking funds or itemize out your sinking funds by type. For example, you could create separate categories for automobile repairs, insurance premiums, holiday gifts, and vacations. Then, when those expenses come up, you won't feel the crunch of not having enough cash flow. 

An Overview of Your Inflows and Outflows 

Another essential budgeting tool is the visualization of how much money is flowing in and out of your accounts each month. Although some months you will spend more than others, you should try to spend less than you earn each month. It's easy to overlook this aspect of budgeting unless you have a way to see your inflows and outflows at a glance. Most budgeting software will include this feature, but if you're using a spreadsheet, it's pretty easy to set up a graph or chart that pulls from each month's data automatically. 

Final Thoughts 

The best budget setup is the one that works for you. The key to managing your spending is that you make a habit of budgeting and tracking your spending. Create a routine for yourself and set up calendar alerts to remind you of which bills are due and when. With practice, your new budgeting routine will put you on your way to financial health. 

Need a
Loan?

Loans from $120 to $15,000. Get funded as soon as today!

09.21.2020 / Borrowing

Requesting Payment Extensions Amid COVID-19
The 2020 pandemic has made even people who have never missed a bill payment start to wonder how to make ends meet. As…