How to Simplify Your Budget
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Have you ever looked at your budget and felt overwhelmed? I have many times so I’m willing to bet that you have as well. Budgets can get pretty complicated if we let them and when that happens, it isn’t too long before you’re confused and spending more than you need to. It doesn’t have to be that way though. There are a few simple things you can do to simplify your budget so that it works best for you and your family.
How to Simplify Your Budget
Budgets aren’t one size fits all and in fact, they’re actually very personal. What works for me, your parents or your best friends may not work for you. If the current system that you’re using is just too much, don’t be afraid to try a different option.
Double check your expenses –
Our expenses change as we grow as people and families so if your budget has old expenses on it, just the very act of them being there could cause it to become cluttered and confusing. Instead, take a look at your expenses every few months and get rid of the ones that aren’t valid any longer.
Update Often –
If you’re confused by your budget, there’s a chance it’s because you’re not updating it often enough. Most of us have more than one account so if you’re not updating your budget on a regular basis, you could be dealing with multiple transactions that don’t make sense to you. Update at least once a week to stay on track and keep things simple.
Cut Expenses –
When you’re looking to keep things simple, the last thing you want or need is a bunch of things to track. Not only will cutting out unneeded expenses save you money, but it will also help you keep things on the simple side. Think about cutting things like cable, school lunches (let them pack), and your morning coffee to start and then work up to the larger ones.
Pick a payment method –
It’s really easy to complicate things if you’re using more than one payment method. If you use cash for some items, but your debit card for others, you can easily forget to track the cash spending. This results in nothing but pure confusion when you go to sit down and update. Instead, pick one way to pay and stick to it. Some choose to go cash only and some choose to go debit only. Whichever you go with, make sure it works for your family.
If all else fails, scrap your entire budget and start over. There’s no shame in having to rework something that isn’t working. With enough time and enough thought, you can end your budget confusion, make things a lot less complicated and just generally simplify your finances.