Top Seven Budgeting Tips That’ll Help You Reach Your Savings Goals

Financial Goals

It’s never too early to start planning and saving money, especially when considering that 64% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck. Regardless of your age, experience level, or financial situation, you don’t need to be among these statistics. Learning to budget wisely should be a goal for everyone.

Budgeting can be hard, especially when life gets in the way. However, you don’t have to be a prisoner to your budget. You can use budgeting tips to your advantage. With these tips, you can have fun while reaching your savings goals.

Here are seven top tips to help you reach your savings goal of having some extra cash for the holidays.

1. Track Your Spending

The key to budgeting (and saving money) is tracking your spending. Knowing how much you have spent in various categories allows you to see where to cut back and save more. You can do this manually or use one of the many online tools available to help you track your finances.

The best way to track your spending is by reviewing all the receipts for your purchases. It is a tedious process, but it does give you an accurate picture of what you spend each month.

You can also track your spending by examining your bank and credit card statements and writing down all the purchases categorized as discretionary spending (i.e., anything that’s not a bill).

2. Play Casino on a Budget

If you have a problem with gambling and have found yourself in debt, it’s time to stop playing casinos and start getting serious about your finances. But if you simply like going to casinos every once in a while, try setting a monthly budget for gambling. You can also find a list of new casinos not on Gamstop that have pocket-friendly games.

You won’t spend much money each month on games of chance. You should never spend more than you can afford on any form of entertainment, including casino gambling.

3. Make a List of Expenses

You need to know exactly where your money is going before figuring out how to manage it better. Keep track of everything for at least two months, including monthly bills, recurring expenses, irregular expenses (like car maintenance), and discretionary spending (like eating out).

Once you have a list of your expenses, sort them into two categories: fixed costs and variable costs. Fixed costs stay the same each month, like mortgage or rent payments and car insurance premiums.

Variable costs change monthly, like grocery bills and entertainment spending. Include it in both categories if a cost falls somewhere between, for example, if your cell phone bill can fluctuate.

4.Get Creative With Your Savings Goals

It’s a good idea to set savings goals, whether you’re saving for a house, college, or retirement. How much you’ll need to save for each goal will depend on how far out you are from reaching them. But the closer the goals are, the more specific the amount needs to be.

For example, if you have a $10,000 goal to buy a new car in three years, you may need to save $3,250 per year or $270 per month. If your goal is to retire with one million dollars, you may need to save $40,000 per year or $3,500 per month.

To achieve your goals and stay motivated, consider getting creative with your savings goals. You can create vision boards or rewards tied to your progress.

5. Define Your Starting Point

Next, look at your current financial situation and determine how much income you have available to save each month. How much of that extra cash can go toward your savings goals?

If you are already maxing out your retirement accounts, look at other areas in the budget where you can cut back on spending and redirect that money toward savings. Maybe you’re spending $100 a month at restaurants — can you cut that back to $50 per month and put half of those savings toward that vacation fund?

6. Determine Your Wants and Needs

It’s easy to think that everything is a “need,” but there are only a few things you need: food, shelter, and clothing. The rest are personal preferences or extraneous things that make life more comfortable or enjoyable.

For example, eating out is a convenience, not a necessity. When you’re on a tight budget, you’ll have to decide how many times you want to eat out each month.

7. Set Up Automatic Savings Withdrawals

Set up automatic withdrawals from your checking or savings account into another not as easily accessible account — preferably one without an ATM card. It will help create a habit of saving money at the beginning of each month before you have the chance to spend it elsewhere.

Financial Goals 1

Time to Get Started!

Budgeting has been around for a long time and for a good reason. It is a tried and true way to control your spending, save more money, and live a stress free life by affording the things that you want. These seven tips will help get you started with your budget so you’re saving and reaching your savings goals.

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