Budgeting is a cornerstone of every financially sustainable household and family’s budget should be a reflection of the lives of your family members.
However, budgets are double-edged swords; They are essential but creating and strictly implementing the household budget is easier said than done.
Here’s a comprehensive list of ways on how you and your spouse can create and religiously follow your household budget.
The primary reason why most budgets go unused is that people set unrealistic spending plans that are bound to fall apart.
If you are the only earner in a young family with four members and you’re earning around $50,000, it is almost impossible for you to save 25% or more of your earnings each month.
Creating such a budget is bound to fail due to the realities of having a family.
Create an Annual Budget
At the end of every year, you and your spouse need to create a realistic budget for the next year based on how much you earn, how much you pay in taxes, how much you spend on bills and miscellaneous expenses.
Depending on how much your household is scheduled to earn during the coming year and the average of how much your family has spent over the last three years, you can come up with a reasonable budget that fits your household’s needs.
Thanks to new financial technology startups, we have applications that will track your spending for weekly, monthly or even yearly budgets, to ensure that you stay in your financial lane.
New applications like Mint or Pennies makes it possible for you to view and track your spending in real-time. It is perfect for those with unaccounted expenses each month.
It does not matter if you have the best budget in the world. There are times when we get unplanned expenses that cannot be avoided.
You may need to pay for a relative’s funeral or purchase a new car for your family or maybe even fix some neglected areas of your home.
In situations where you need to finance essential purchases, like a car, what you need is a car loan even with a bad credit rating.
Give Yourself an Allowance
As per your budget, calculate how much you need for important things like fuel, food, and the like. Withdraw that money from the bank and carry it around in cash.
When you spend cash, you subconsciously witness the ramifications of your spending as opposed to paying with debit or credit cards.
By paying in cash, when you run out of notes, you run out of money to spend.
Ask anyone that’s ever tried to stick to a budget, and they will tell you that the first thing you should do is to eat out less and cook more.
Plan your meals, buy food in bulk once or twice a month and restrict eating out to special occasions or twice a month in the beginning.
When you plan what you are eating, you plan what you are spending.
Everything that’s listed here is irrelevant until you decide that you’re willing to make the sacrifices necessary to attain financial stability.
You and your family must be willing to go above and beyond in the process. You may experience inconveniences and be forced to make sacrifices. However, one thing is for sure: These hard times won’t last forever and sooner or later you’ll emerge on the other side with greater financial freedom.
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