For many of us, budgeting gives negative emotions and the urge that you should not spend money on things you love. This is just one side of the budget story.
What if I said your budget was the not so secret key to achieving your goals? Maintaining and adhering to a budget is the foundation of economic health, and there are many tools to help you become a budgeting rockstar.
Budgeting can be the most feared word in English, but it should not be. Continue reading to find out why.
Why do you need a budget
Facts: you need a budget.
A budget is just a tool. Think of it as the GPS system for your goals, whether you want to save for home payment, fund a 529 plan for your child's college expenses, kick some debt to the edge or save for a great vacation. [1
The bottomless pit
Without a budget, your money will surely fall to the "bottomless pit syndrome". You have no doubt experienced this. At the beginning of the month, you have every reason to believe that you will be left with a certain number left at the end of the month. Except then you don't. And that happens every month. This bike can let you borrow from your savings or use your credit card to pay expenses.
The good news is that you can break this cycle by creating and following a budget.
Main components of a budget
Creating Your budget is simple. There are some key components:
- A list of your income for the month
- A list of your fixed (must pay) monthly expenses. Think mortgage loans, rent, student loans, minimum credit card payments, groceries, car payments, life insurance and so on.
- A list of your variable (things you like to spend your money on) spending for the month. Think subscription, gym membership, entertainment, shopping, eating out, transportation, travel, extra credit card payments and other discretionary expenses.
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How to nail accuracy in your budget  A budget is just as good as the numbers you put in it, so be sure to follow these steps to get your budget to tell the truth every month.
Step 1: Create your budget at the beginning of the month with a column containing the revenue and costs you think you will have for the month. This can be achieved by copying and pasting from the month before and adding any additional payments that you think may or may not have.
Step 2: Create a second column on your budget at the end of the month that includes the revenue and costs you really had. This is the truth bomb for your budget. There are many tools that we will discuss below, but one of the easiest ways to do this is to look at your current account statement and sum up how much you spent in each category. If necessary, you can add categories that you forgot.
Tools for making the budget simple and low effort
There have never been so many great tools from mobile apps to downloadable template software to help you configure and manage your budget. Paper, pen, spreadsheet and journal magazines are also options. Try a couple of different strategies to see what is best for you and stay motivated to stay up to date with your budget.
Here are some tools to get your budget up and running:
You need a budget ™
What: You need a budget offering software and a mobile app that helps You get your budget and expenses in shape.
Who it is for: This is an excellent tool for anyone looking for a robust budget solution.
Cost: $ 6.99 a month after a free 34-day trial
Clarity Money ©
What: Clarity Money is a mobile app that packs a lot of kind. Their motto is to help you take control of your finances by giving you a complete financial picture that will help you find unwanted subscriptions and deliver other money that saves knowledge in your hand.
Who it is for: Clarity money is good for budgeting beginners who want to feel empowered by keeping track of expenses and saving in an easily accessible mobile app.
What: Albert is a newer budgeting app that uses the power of technology to help automate your economy and lets you build a budget based on your actual income, your habits and goals.  Who it is for: Albert tries to save money without any problems, so it is good for someone who wants to set up the app and then let it do the job. Albert also offers Albert Genius (for a fee), a team of financiers, you can write to any kind of long-term money issues.
Budgeting for couples
Mastering the budgeting can be difficult as an individual, even less so as a couple. Money problems with couples are one of the main causes of divorce year after year. As a couple, you take the relationship of your own values and habits around money. Your money habits can cause conflicts if you do not set any parameters to keep money in place and have honest conversations.
Getting on the same financial side is the start of a good partnership. For each couple, this looks different, but there are some important strategies you can incorporate each month to keep your finances in the same direction.
Money Rules – It is a good idea to put some money rules in place. The rules can serve as a basis for making decisions as a couple, for example, who is the primary person responsible for making decisions on money daily, how much can you spend without talking to each other, how does your bank and the structure for savings accounts look , how much will you invest from your paychecks, etc. Setting the foundation will make the mystery of money decisions like a couple.
Money Date – a money date is just like it sounds, just better. Set aside fifteen to thirty minutes each week (preferably at the same time every week) to talk about what's happening to your money. Make your money date fun; Take a glass of wine, go to your favorite park, make a nice dinner. Talk about what is in your mind during your money date. What happened last week to your finances and what happens next week. This is your time to restore and focus on what's happening behind the scenes with your finances. But have fun with these.
Setting goals – Setting goals is an important success with couples. You can set money goals in your money dates, or set aside a separate time during the month to print these. Include short-term goals such as paying off debts or covering financial risks and long-term goals such as saving for buying houses and pension planning. Goals can and should be flexible and always incorporated into your budget so that you can achieve them.
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Let your budget work work for you
Setting the budget is the best way to steer your finances heavily, but a budget only works if you work on it. You will not fall in love with the budget process overnight, but if you commit to stick to the process for a few months you will be amazed at what you can achieve. Do budgeting work for you. Find the tools that will inspire you and reward you while you set new goals.
You need a budget is a brand you need a budget LLC.
Clarity Money is a copyright of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
Albert is a copyright of Learn by Doing, Inc.
Shannah Compton Game is a certified financial PLANNER® professional with an MBA and is host to the award-winning podcast Millennial Money, where she shares entirely relatable and easy-to-understand financial advice that actually lets you talk about money.
The Haven Life Insurance Agency does not provide legal advice. This discussion is only intended for general education. We encourage you to work with your own personal taxes or lawyers. Opinions expressed by the author are their own and do not necessarily represent Haven Life. Haven Life does not support the companies or offer the products, services and / or strategies discussed here.
Haven Term is a Term Life Insurance Policy (ICC17DTC) issued by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), Springfield, MA 01111 and offered exclusively by the Haven Life Insurance Agency, LLC. The number and features of policies and riders may vary by state and may not be available in all states. In New York, Haven Term DTC-NY is 1017. Our license number in California is OK71922 and in Arkansas, 100139527.