Never to late to start budgeting
I don’t know about you but I can not live without a budget! Budgets serve as a visual accountability for every dollar that is spent, every penny counts in my household. I often tell people who make comments such as: ” It must be nice to stay at home” that it doesn’t happen without a budget, organization, I coupon when I can, we have needs v/s wants, and just savings, savings, savings! Also, it is never or to early to start teaching our children the value of a dollar and that taking time to save and think about that item you want, pray on things, ask if that is where God would have you spend your money. To my family that is very important, That’s a large but important question many people forget to ask and not because they don’t care, but we all get in the hustle and bustle of everyday life and often times forget to stop and just say “Lord, where do I need to apply extra time or money?” or “Lord, what would you have me do with what you have provided?”. Now, we all know, we have obligations to the standards of having a roof over our heads, clothes on our backs and food to eat, that is a given that we spend for. However; it is a good thing to keep on top of your budget. Changes happen all the time; some good, some bad. I take a look over our budget at least every 6 months to see what may have changed. Sometimes we have progress in an area and can allow more to be added to certain categories, and sometimes we have added expenses such as: college. I like to take this time of year (Half year mark) to do just that, look over, re-calculate, see where your areas of improvement are. Also, Christmas time will be here before we know it and if you can budget savings weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly now you can be ahead of the game. *one tip with Christmas time, we set a budget per child every year and stick to it! If your child wants something that is more expensive than his or her budgeted amount then ask relatives to go in with you on the price of the item or give them money toward it. Sometimes we put so much emphasis on the gifts and feeling the need to go overboard that we take away from what the day is really about, Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, gets praised and honored before any gifts are even thought about. More on Christmas budgeting later 😉
I know I squirreled on you a little, sorry about that. Budgeting can be done in many ways, some people like mobile apps, others like sitting down at your desktop, having a notebook, day planners,and stationary. I am actually an all of the above type person. I use mobile, desktop, and a day planner, with my handy pen and highlighter! I like to always have a visual available for when I do not have something pulled up on the computer. (I am a little old school that way) LOL!! I find that with many people who actually write it out it gives them a little bit of a reality to what is being spent out of their paycheck. Also, using cash more will help with the overspending habits. Mentally when we have cash we tend to want to hold on to it longer and think about what we are purchasing. I have found a few online sites that I personally love, not to say that there is not lots of great ones out there because they are, and I would love to hear your budgeting tips and sites! so please post and let me know your great tips 🙂
***Note…All of these links are free to use, there is an optional upgrade with more resources and tools that cost but most people find what is offered free is all they need.
Kids and teens Giving, Saving, Spending *This is a great way to get your kids to keep track of their money. can be used with a home school personal finance class as well, and includes a chore list with check off and email reminders.