5 Tips to Help You Stick to Your Budget

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5 Tips to Help You Stick to Your Budget

You finished the hard work of coming up with a budget, but a few months go by and you find yourself struggling to keep up with it.

Maybe you don’t like number crunching, or the thought of sitting down and accounting for all your expenses each week seems like the last thing in the world you want to do. Or maybe the budget that you created is a bit unrealistic.

Don’t worry. There’s hope. These five tips are designed to help you keep to your budget.

1. Use a System You Like –

There are all kinds of budget systems out there, from budgeting software that links to your bank account and automatically classifies your expenses to trusty old Excel spreadsheets that you can make yourself. Pick a system that works for you.

For example, if you often use your debt card for expenses and you don’t keep receipts, using budgeting software tied to your bank account that updates automatically makes the process easier on you. If you often use cash, you might even want to try the old-fashioned envelope system of storing and organizing receipts for your budget.

2. Receipt Rounding –

Speaking of receipts, many people stop sticking with their budget because it gets irritating keeping track of every single receipt. You can make this process a little bit easier on yourself by just estimating the numbers and rounding up instead of tracking every receipt. For example, if you often spend £3.75 on lunch every day, just enter the amount as £4 in your budget. Alternately, use software that automatically tracks your spending.

3. Automate –

You can also make budgeting a lot easier by setting up automatic payments. If you are trying to take out a certain percentage of each paycheck for savings, for example, you can do this automatically using electronic transfers through your bank. Likewise, you can also schedule bill payments to process on a certain date each month, making it easier for you.

4. Plan for the Unexpected –

We can’t always plan out the future. Something will happen every month – the dog gets sick, you accidentally drop your phone, the car won’t start. Whatever it is, it’s always a good idea to include an ‘unexpected expense’ column in your budget and set some money aside for it. That way you won’t lose track of your budget trying to shuffle everything around to account for it.

5. Challenge Yourself –

Instead of seeing budgeting as a boring task, make a game out of it by challenging yourself. Set goals, like spending £15 fewer dollars on clothing than you did last month. If you become more aware of how you spend your money, then you are accomplishing the main goal behind budgeting.

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