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Keep Yourself in Check: Budgeting Can Be Your Friend


When most people hear the word "Budgeting", they cringe.  Budgets can actually be your biggest ally. They help you to realize what you’re spending compared to what you’re making and put you in a better position for the future. The best part is that they’re not hard to create, so your efforts pay off, both figuratively and literally!

To start, you need to recognize what’s going on with your financial life now. What are you spending money on? Are these expenditures going to a larger cause for the future? The best way to do this is to make lists.  You need to categorize your spending habits.  Keep in mind that you need to see everything clearly before you can determine what needs to be changed. Once you record all of your earnings and expenses, you can really see where your money is going. With 12 months worth of receipts, bills and pay stubs, it becomes quite easy to see how much you spend and where.

Once you have everything outlined, you can start making the necessary changes and cutbacks. Cutbacks are extremely important and take an overwhelming precedence if you learn that you are spending more than you are making.  There can be problems if you start spending money that you do not really have. To optimize the benefits of a budget:

  • Reduce larger expenses
  • Cutting out frivolous shopping (i.e. expensive clothing, furniture, unnecessary living expenditures)
  • Refinancing your mortgage
  • Cutting your taxes

In some cases, you can even help your budget by challenging the assessment of your property. This can only be done if you have solid proof that your house really is not worth as much as it was said to be. If you accomplish this, your real estate tax can be considerably reduced. 

When you start to see the positive results of your budgeting, you cannot resort back to old spending ways.


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