With proper budget, we should be able to itemize all spending components and we will be able to make an estimation of how much we will spend each month. If we want to have a perfect budget, it is important to include all income sources. This may include regular salary, bonuses, tips and others. If we are able to gather all income sources, it would be much easier for us to know how much we can spend. If we calculate everything, it can be quite surprising to know how much is available for us. The next step is to come up with a list of all expenditures, including the smallest and the most unnecessary one. Once some of the excess expenses are included in the list, it is possible to recognize them and if possible, eliminate them completely. This should allow us to know how much that we may spend each month. We should compare income and expense, so if we still have positive value, then our financial condition is acceptable. In many cases, people have debts that can be quite debilitating financially. There should be a good plan to eliminate or at least reduce debts. This situation can be more difficult if we can’t reduce expenses below our income. We should know how to create a plan and how much we should spend.
If we have reduced our expenses and we still find it to repay debts, it is a good idea to contact lenders. We should inform them about our plan and this should allow us to reduce debts faster. Expenses should be grouped by category, based on a list of priority. Income should also be divided properly, so we know that source of each. By categorizing expense, we should know what kind of entertainment and fun elements that we can reduce or eliminate. When we seek to pay down our debt, we may need to temporarily put our lives on hold. After the initial effort for saving money, we should start to look for creative ways to save money whenever possible. We should make sure that the challenge feels fun to accomplish. As an example, we may give our child $5 a week and ask him to obtain the most fun for the whole week with only that amount of money. Instead of using personal budget book, it is recommended to use spreadsheet, such as Microsoft Excel. Personal budget tends to change, often on a daily basis. We could still print the budget regularly, if we want to keep weekly or monthly personal budget report. Eventually, we may see pattern that can help us to improve our financial condition.
Once we are able to save some money, we should be able to plan for the future. In the United States, people usually put some money aside for IRA and 401K. It is important to know that the overall cost of living may steadily go up, so we should be fully prepared.