Making a personal budget is a great way to learn more about your spending and saving habits. Of course, the real challenge comes in sticking to your budget once you have made it! What makes this challenge easier is when you can create a budget that is more personalized to your needs and goals.
In this post, learn five simple ways to personalize your budget so you are more motivated to follow it to the letter.
Tip #1: Choose a budgeting tool you really enjoy using.
If there is one thing you won’t lack for when you start budgeting, it is a wide variety of budgeting tools to choose from. From the old paper-and-calculator method to apps that link all your financial accounts together for you, there are literally hundreds of options.
Choose a tool you really enjoy using – something that feeds your sense of reward every time you use it.
Tip #2: Identify one or a few small ticket items you can purchase from your newfound savings.
A big part of budgeting is finding ways you are wasting cash where you could be saving it. An example here is a subscription to a magazine you no longer enjoy reading or a savings on insurance premiums when you combine all policies with a single insurer.
So here, you will be motivating yourself to sleuth out those wasted funds, reclaim them, and then thinking of how you want to spend your newfound savings. Start with smaller ticket items so you can experience the rewards of your new budgeting system faster.
Tip #3: Consider a yearly rather than a monthly budget.
Life happens – even to those of us who have attempted to plan and budget it out of existence. This is why sometimes creating a monthly goal with a yearly budget can make more sense.
Tip #4: Include “fun” activities in your budget.
One huge pitfall many new budgeters make is to create a budget that includes no “fun” spending. You will want and need to go see movies, have coffee with friends, entertain, take vacation. So budget realistically towards the life you want to live.
Tip #5: Build in little rewards.
Even if you have a big reward planned for yourself at the end of the first 12 months of budgeting, this won’t get you through the first grueling 12 days. So build in smaller and more frequent rewards that can give you a little pick-me-up just when you need it most.
By personalizing your budget in every possible way, from the budgeting tool to the incentivizing rewards you give yourself, you will set yourself up to budget your funds successfully from the start.