Spring is right around the corner. Just like a thorough home spring cleaning can get the household set up for success, your budget can also benefit from an annual refresh and update. Use this time to evaluate and plan to ensure that you are on track for the year ahead. Here are a few easy-to-follow steps to get your budget in order and maximize your financial potential.
Just like cleaning a house, it works best to tackle your budget piece by focusing your efforts on one item at a time. All of us want to save tens of thousands to be able to afford our kids’ college education or buy our next car, but this can lead to burnout or low motivation. Instead, start with a smaller goal, like building up your emergency savings fund or paying down one of your debts. For example, focus on your smaller debts such as credit cards – especially the ones with high interest rates–over larger debts such as a mortgage or student loans. By focusing on paying off the smaller debts, you’re going to stay more motivated as you’ll be able to see the dent in the debt faster.
Cut Back Unnecessary Expenses
Evaluating and cutting back on your expenses is a fantastic way to set yourself up for financial success. If you’re not already assessing where your money is going, it’s time to start now. That coffee on the way to work or going out to lunch daily, might not seem like much money in the moment, but these expenses can add up quickly and destroy any budget. Other budget-killers are unused subscriptions such as video or music streaming services, magazines, or cloud storage, in addition to unwatched cable channels.
Often times we can sign-up for a free trial and by the time the trial expires we’ve forgotten all about it. If you’re not keeping track of where your money is going, it can be easy to forget about that $10/month charge that comes out. These subscriptions can easily pile up to the point where you’re spending $50+ a month on services you’re not really using!
Create Realistic Goals & Write Them Down
One of the most important steps when cleaning out your budget is to be realistic when setting your new goals for the year. Yes, it’d be great to pay off your car loan in the next three months, but depending on your situation, that could mean sacrificing in a lot of other areas. A goal could be saving for a family vacation or paying off a credit card balance by the end of the year. Whatever your goal, write it down and place it somewhere you can see it every day. By setting yourself up with realistic goals, achievable timelines, and reminding yourself often, you’re more likely to succeed and avoid impulse purchases that bust your budget.
This is not a sponsored post. These tips were provided by Zebit, the only eCommerce company which provides 0% financing options for purchases on their online shopping platform.