The best way to take control of your finances is to create a budget. However, having the courage to create a budget is one thing and having the discipline to stick to your budget is quite another.
A budget allows you know where your money is going and therefore you have total control of your money.
That means you have to cut a few unnecessary thing, like eating out, cable TV, subscriptions magazines. You might enjoy having these things, but you have drawn up a good plan and wants to stick to your budget. However, sticking to your budget is not always easy.
You might be tempted to dip into your savings to go on a week-long vacation or buy a new pair of shoes. But there are ways that can help you to stick to your budget even when you are so tempted.
“Understanding where your money is going is an important step in taking control of your finances.”
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If you want to learn how to create a budget, then read this article: How to Create a Budget and Learn How to Stick to It
This “How to do a budget” will walk you through all of the details. Below are 4 practical budgeting tips to help you stick to your budget.
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4 Things That Will Help You Stick to Your Budget
1. Find a Partner to Hold You Accountable
We all go off track from time to time. It is a good idea to have a partner who is on the same page with you when it comes to your budget. Just as if you decide to lose weight and be healthy, you can have a partner to keep one another accountable for eating healthy food and exercising regularly.
This partner can be a trusted friend, your significant other, spouse, or family member. That partner can help in giving you advice, let you know when you mess up, encourage you or support you.
Having a partner for accountability is extremely helpful to help you stick to your budget.
2. Be Realistic
In order for you to stick to your budget, your goals have to be realistic. If you make $50,000 a year, it’s not realistic to think you can save half. Don’t make your budget so tight that you won’t be able to stick to it. So keep it simple.
3. Designate a No-Spend Day
A third way to stick to your budget is to designate a no spend day or week into your monthly budget. That means you can designate day or a week or even a month not to spend.
For example, you can designate a week where you pack lunch to work instead of eating out. You can drink the coffee your work provides instead of stopping at Starbucks for a latte. A no spend day will help you stick to your budget and save money.
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4. Set Up an Emergency Fund
Another way to stick to your budget is to set up an emergency fund and start funding it. The best way to fund this emergency fund is to open a separate savings account. A high interest savings account is a good choice.
When you receive a raise, a bonus, or your tax refund, put that money straight to your emergency fund.
Your emergency fund should not be easily accessible. Opening an emergency fund at your neighborhood local bank may not be a good idea, because you can easily walk a block to get that money.
5. Leave Your Credit Cards at Home
If you want to stick to your budget, then leaving your credit cards at home when you are out and about is the way to go. It’s a lot harder to spend cold cash in your wallet than it is to swipe a plastic card.
In other words, you are more likely to swipe your credit cards to purchase a big item, like a TV set, than to use your crisp $100 bills to purchase it.
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