Learning to manage your money in times of crisis became an important skill, one that some of us had to develop quickly in the face of today’s uncertainty. Here, OGPay aims to bring you a few ideas on how to make your household budget and stick to it, allowing you to save and have a clear view of your finances.
Set a goal
You need to know what you aim to achieve with this budget: is it saving money? is it getting a clear view of where your money is going every month? Is it getting out of debt? Whichever it is, make sure to write it down and attach any other sub-goals that help you get to it: paying off credit cards, seed money to start your business… anything goes.
Dare to dream, but also keep it real, go for achievable goals and then start building upon them.
Get the full view of your current finances
Now that you have your goals… It is time to get real and step into the present. To do it, you will need a spreadsheet or worksheet to write down your monthly income and expenses.
Don’t leave anything out, every small expense and income helps or affects your monthly budget: utility bills, groceries, transportation… even those daily candies you buy!).
Start cutting the non-essentials
Now that you have a clear view of where your money comes and where it is going, it’s time to do some changes! Think about what you really need and what you want. These are two different things, what you need is essential, something you cannot do without on a daily basis (think of groceries, utilities).
And what you want is something that is nice to have, but you can cut for a while as you get your finances in good shape (weekend outings, take out, Netflix membership…).
Make savvy choices, cut those things that accumulate, and end up representing a good chunk of your budget that could be used in a better way.
Now that you know where you can and cannot cut, it’s time to reallocate. The money you “save” and are cutting from expenses, must find its way to your goal. If it is to save, then direct it to your savings account as soon as you get it. This way you don’t fall into temptation and spend it right away. Are you in debt? Save one part for a rainy day and then use the other to start paying off as soon as you can.
Saving may feel like a chore, but your future self will thank you for it when the occasion arises.
Execute and repeat! Each month do the exercise we just did: consider your income, project your expenses, and save as much as you can! Any day is good to start getting your finances in shape. With a clear view and expectations, you’ll be on your way to managing your budget wisely!
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