There’s no doubt about it – the holiday season can put a dent in anyone’s wallet. People spend money on things like travel, food, and gifts, to name a few. To get a fresh start on your finances, you may be wondering how you can best plan a budget. Here are some tips for starting your New Year’s budget.
Write it All Down
Make a list of where your money goes every month. Be sure to keep the list as detailed as possible and consider all expenses. Some examples include the basics like groceries, car costs, rent, mortgage, and utilities, but can also include dining out, subscriptions, health expenses, and more.
Don’t make this list once a month – create it at the start and end of each month to get a better sense if you can afford to pay for your expenses with enough to put into savings. You can keep track of it in a notebook, or utilize the latest technologies and monitor your finances in an app like Mint.
Track Larger Expenses with a Budget Planner
When you start your New Year’s budget, it’s essential to plan for any major expenses for that year. Set a financial goal for any upcoming large expense, like a vacation or new car. You can use a budget planner – there are many options online when you do your research, like budget calculators or worksheets, and you can see which type of budget planner works for you.
By utilizing online resources, you will have a visual for the progress you are making towards your goal. A budget planner can also track important due dates and unexpected expenses. If you have thoughts of doing anything major like refinancing your mortgage, check out sites like Credible where they list current refi rates.
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Review Your Purchases
To get into good habits, plan for one day every month that you can devote to reviewing your purchases – that way, you can track where your money is going. It’s essential to review each month to ensure your finances are organized for the next month. By getting into a steady routine, you will be able to see where you need to make adjustments to your budget.
Keeping Up with Your Goals
Once you make budgeting a regular habit, you should see improvements with your money goals. Once you feel confident enough with keeping up with your financial goals, then you should see strides in other areas of your daily life.
New Year’s resolutions are a wonderful way to get yourself on track, but be sure that it’s not just a fad for you that will fade once the year progresses.
If starting a New Year’s budget is at the top of your list for 2020, now you have some tools to get started as a way to accomplish your financial goals. Be sure to plan and stay organized with your finances, and don’t forget to track your budget in an app or notebook.