Tag: Budgeting

How to Build Your Own Personal Monthly Budget

personal monthly budget

Building a personal monthly budget is a piece of cake. Get your slice of the action now.

An average of 40% of American families have a monthly budget. You can become one of them!

If you want financial security, creating a budget can change your life. It gives you the knowledge you need to handle your finances appropriately.

You, too, can enjoy the benefits of a budget.

The following information will help you create a budget of your own.

Identify How Much You Make For a Personal Monthly Budget

In order to make a personal monthly budget, you have to identify how much you make. To determine how much you can spend, you need to know how much money you have coming in.

Remember all the details. Subtract your taxes, Social Security, and any other things you need to pay. Be sure to also subtract fixed expenses like rent, bills, car insurance, and other payments.

It’s important to maintain financial awareness. You should always know what’s in your checking and savings accounts as well as any other accounts you have. This reduces your chances of overdrawing your account or making a major financial mistake.

Determine your net worth. To do this, you subtract the amount of money you owe from the amount of money you have. In the end, you should have a number amount you can work with.

Once you know how much money you’re making, you have to know more.

Identify Where Your Money Goes & Set Goals

Now, you need to find out where your money is going. What do you spend your money on?

There’s a lot of ways you can become accountable for your expenses. For instances, you can start tracking your spending by writing down your purchases in a diary or spreadsheet.

You might have a habit or hobby that’s taking up more finances than it should. You might be surprised once you take a closer look at your purchases.

You also need to set financial goals. Paying off debt or saving money are only two of the goals you might choose. These goals can be short-term or long-term.

It matters that you have a plan for your money instead of spending it.

Become a Responsible Spender

Once you’ve set financial goals, it’s time to start achieving them. Put your financial plan into action by becoming a responsible spender.

You can become a responsible spender with the right life skills. See more!

In order to become a responsible spender, you need to be able to tell the difference between needs and wants. For instance: You might think cigarettes are a need, but you’ll find that quitting can save you a lot of money you can spend elsewhere.

Once you have a personal monthly budget, only buy what you can afford. Can you actually afford movie night or can Netflix do the trick? Try doing date night on a budget instead of with frivolous spending.

You need to ask yourself these questions in order to reduce your spending.

Be conscious of every transaction you make. Make sure all of your spending is within the limits of your budget.

Your Budget is Counting On You

A personal monthly budget can bring you a sense of financial security. The more you save, the better off you’ll be.

Learn more tricks about how to budget, save, and lead a more fulfilling life. You won’t be sorry.

Top 5 Reasons to Use An Expense Tracker

Expense tracker

Think of an expense tracker, and two emotions will likely pop into your head. You either feel intimidated, or you see how it can add value to your budget and keep spending on the right path.

We know how people view technology can vary depending on generational barriers or an absence of financial literacy. But in much the same way smartphones had a small learning curve when you first bought one, these tools are no different.

The make the complex intuitive, and they add several life-changing benefits. Let’s look at the top five.

1. They Isolate Spending Problems

Low-income households spend a higher percentage of their budgets on the necessities of life. This makes tracking each dollar of the utmost importance.

Four-dollar lattes just aren’t as appealing when you realize the same amount of money could feed the entire family for a night. Using an expense tracker helps you identify such problems and regain control.

The good news: you can make your dollar stretch further by bulk-purchasing wholesale items. It may take planning and a few weeks of sacrifice while you stock up, but once the routine is in place, you don’t have to look for the money you’re saving.

2. Help Maintain the Household Budget

Any budget breaks down into five essential categories. They are as follows:

  • Income/revenue sources: how you meet every other goal; easy to calculate because sources are usually more limited than they are on the debit side.
  • Spending and expenses: things you don’t necessarily have to buy, but you feel compelled to (health insurance, grocery bill, entertainment, for examples).
  • Bills: what you either have to pay if you wish to enjoy civilization, or what you’re legally obligated to pay (taxes, water/sewer, utilities)
  • Planning for future purchases: boats, homes, braces for your kids, etc.
  • Long-term savings

To keep it all running smoothly and to meet your life goals, you have to know where each dollar is going. Or else, you could end up getting the electricity turned off.

3. Get You Back on Your Feet Following Missteps

The key to staying on budget is to understand failure is part of it. You must have a contingency for when that happens, because it will.

Using an expense tracker motivates you to do better. But to get the most out of it, find one that’s easily accessible and incorporates with the cloud.

This Tiller Money review highlights a budgeting tool that links to Google Docs, so you can work with one of the most widely supported systems you’re probably already using. Other worthwhile trackers include Personal Capital and Mint.

4. Make April Easier

Tax season is the most stressful time of the year. But it’s much worse if you wait until the last minute to locate and add up a year’s worth of receipts.

Using a tracking tool to do it eases the pressure. Most of the good ones allow you to log receipts as you get them (with images), categorize in compliance with IRS reporting regulations, and easily retrieve the necessary numbers when you need them.

5. Detect Fraud

If you bank online, then you have sensitive data on your email accounts. If your email account is set up through Yahoo, then you’ve been compromised at some point.

To what extent, who knows? The important thing is being aware of it and taking appropriate action.

An expense tracker will bring awareness to fraudulent activity. It also will enable you to act before too much damage occurs.

After Your Expense Tracker Is in Place

Once you’ve got a tracker you can trust, we encourage you to take positive actions with your budget. You can start by making these 10 healthy money-saving choices.

In the meantime, which of these budgeting tools do you use, and why do you prefer it? Drop us a line in the comments section.

FREE Dailyworth Newsletter to Empower Women & Their Money!

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DailyWorth is a free daily personal finance email for women. It delivers practical tips, empowering ideas, and the occasional kick in the pants. DailyWorth tips cover self worth, net worth, saving, spending, earning, investing, taxes, entrepreneurship, financial feminism, and much more. More than ever, money matters to women. Women need to recognize their own self-worth and build their own wealth. Now women can take control of their finances by signing up for DailyWorth.

DailyWorth- FREE Smart Money Tips

DailyWorth is a free daily personal finance email for women. It delivers practical tips, empowering ideas, and the occasional kick in the pants. DailyWorth tips cover self worth, net worth, saving, spending, earning, investing, taxes, entrepreneurship, financial feminism, and much more. More than ever, money matters to women. Women need to recognize their own self-worth and build their own wealth.

SIGN-UP for FREE at DAILYWORTH to take control of your finances!

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What is Manilla? Manilla (manilla.com) is a free web based service that helps consumers better manage all of their household accounts, including financial, utilities, subscriptions and travel rewards programs, in one secure place online. Under a single password, Manilla provides customers with an automated, organized view of all of their account information, text and/or email reminders to pay bills and unlimited storage of account documents that Manilla has seamlessly retrieved for the consumer.

Why is Manilla necessary? Most people have more than 20 different household accounts, including three to four credit cards, several travel and hotel rewards accounts, multiple magazine and newspaper subscriptions, plus cable, phone, and other assorted utility bills. In order to stay on top of all this, people have to manage daily incoming paper mail, an array of online usernames and passwords, and websites in order to access important account information and take action. Manilla seamlessly retrieves all your account information – current balances, previous payments, upcoming bills due – and stores it for you in one secure place. Most importantly, you need only one password to view, manage and organize it all.

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TMR Frugal Living Tip #98- Raise Insurance Deductibles

Today’s thrifty living tip is to raise your insurance deductibles. This one can save you as much as $200 a year depending on your rates. I know I saved us about $220 yearly by raising our auto insurance from $500 to $1000 each. Our auto insurance rates are pretty high living in Louisiana compared to many other states and ditto on house insurance. We can thank the hurricanes for that one. I also raised our home deductibles which also saved us another $300 a year. That is an extra $50 a month.

I do get a small discount for paying the house insurance premium annually instead of monthly. I also switched our automobile insurance to Allstate and saved us over $70/month! That is a huge savings! I am now sticking that money into savings to help boost our emergency fund. We already have our deductibles covered in savings.

Your savings will vary and it might not be worth it for you. It never hurts to investigate just to see are you getting the best rates you can. Wouldn’t an extra $25 or more a month be nice in your wallet instead of theirs? I know I am glad I switched our insurance and much rather have that extra $70 in my pocket monthly.