Everyone is looking to cut back on their expenses. The cost of living is constantly rising, and there is no sign that wages are going to rise in line with inflation. It can often seem as though saving money and sticking to a budget is a necessity rather than just a good idea. It can be hard to do though, as a budget can feel like a restraint on your overall lifestyle. Actually keeping tabs on your outgoing expenses can also force you to confront your financial difficulty, and it can therefore be something to avoid and put off.
But there is a lot of good sense in keeping your budget. It will help you to understand the best ways to get the most out of your cash. It will also mean that you become more conscious in your day to day life, more readily identifying the ways in which it might be possible for you to save money. To help you on this difficult but worthy endeavor, we’ve decided to put together a few tips and tricks that we find invaluable when we’re living on a strict budget.
Here you are:
When you’re dealing with a budget it can often be helpful to use physical money instead of relying on cards, cheques and digital transfers. Of course, when you’re making the big purchases and working with mortgage brokers, you should still be using bank transfers. But if you’re struggling to stick to a budget for food, transport or everyday expenses then it can help to have the cash in hand. That way you have a visual aid which will show you exactly what it is that you’ve spent, as well as what you have left.
Do some reading and research and find the app that works best for you. There are plenty out there that allow you to input your overall budget, as well as your expenses in certain areas. Using apps like this you might be able to see that the area constantly tripping you up is travel expense. You might then decide to spend one week’s budget on a bike, so that over the next few months you come significantly under budget. Some of these are free, although there are plenty out there that are well worth paying for. Do your research and reading online, and make sure to read user reviews.
If an app isn’t your style, you can create a dynamic spreadsheet for your own budget. With just a little bit of knowledge and some patience, you can make a spreadsheet that will accurately keep track of your expenses without you having to do the addition. It will also demonstrate your adherence to your overall budget, and if you really want to take it to the next level you can begin to create graphics and visualisations. The best thing about this idea is that if you own a computer, you probably own the Excel software that can do all of this.