Have you found a new system for planning your budget?

Hey, great comments about making a list and developing a budget. Of course sticking to it too really helps.

It’s still amazing how some of the core systems, that have been around for decades, still work the best. 

If you already have The Budget Kit workbook,  I”m sure you discovered the handy two worksheets for “Gift Giving” and “Holiday Expense” planning.  

Now don’t forget it won’t be long before the other gift planning starts up… graduation, weddings, Mother”s Day, Father’s Day and those summer birthdays!!!  When will you start making your list and developing a budget for those upcoming expenses?

Let me hear what new systems you discovered recently that are working for you and your household.

 

19 Responses

  1. judylawrence
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    Thanks for the comment regarding what I call periodic expenses. The most important part is being aware of all these various non-monthly, periodic expenses and then creating a plan for them as you suggested. Anyone using “The Budget Kit” will find an easy and thorough explanation of this concept and have some powerful tools for managing these disruptive bills.

  2. Manuel X. Reed
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    Creating a budget may not sound like the most exciting thing in the world to do, but it is vital in keeping your financial house in order. Before you begin to create your budget it is important to realize that in order to be successful you have to provide as much detailed information as possible. Ultimately, the end result will be able to show where your money is coming from, how much is there and where it is all going.

    • judylawrence
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      You’ve described the concept well. Many people get stuck at that “provide as much detailed information as possible” part. Patience and persistence ultimately will pay off for keeping your financial house in order. I work with a lot of couples who use my jumpstart coaching to get them past that initial overwhelm when creating an effective budget. Thanks for your comments.

  3. Nettie Joyce
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    A comparison of your monthly profit and loss statement to your budget indicates whether or not you are achieving your business plan goals. Set up a simple worksheet to compare actual expenses to your budget and get in the practice of reviewing a) where all the money goes, and b) any differences from the amounts you budgeted. Thus, you can pinpoint and work on the problems that have occurred during the month.

  4. Gilbert Hayes
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    If you’re spending more than you earn, use your budget to see where your money is going. Then see if there are any ways you can cut your spending or increase your income.

    • judylawrence
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      Hi Gilbert. Thanks for the comment. Tracking is a tremendous tool and does help one see where the money has gone. One added note is to realize that an actual budget is more than tracking. A budget is really a proactive tool for outlining all potential expenses for the month along with a prorated amount for all the periodic expenses throughout the year. My free ecourse “Budgeting Without Tears” covers this in more depth. In the meantime, keep up the tracking and follow Gilbert’s suggestion.

    • judylawrence
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      Yes Gilbert, that’s the foundation of money management. If only consumers were able to stay focused on these basics. The challenge seems to be all the tempting ways to have a convenient, beautiful and fun lifestyle the media keeps showing. Consumers are having a harder time with delayed gratification and paying the consequences later. That’s the part the media doesn’t always show.

  5. Jame J. Hodges
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    A comparison of your monthly profit and loss statement to your budget indicates whether or not you are achieving your business plan goals. Set up a simple worksheet to compare actual expenses to your budget and get in the practice of reviewing a) where all the money goes, and b) any differences from the amounts you budgeted. Thus, you can pinpoint and work on the problems that have occurred during the month.

    • judylawrence
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      Thanks Jame – yup, you’ve got it! The concepts for the household budget are pretty similar to the basic concepts for a business budget. The key for solopreneurs is to remember to factor in a realistic household budget when planning out the business budget so business brings in enough to cover both.

  6. Vito Y. Blair
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    Reviews three ways to get the most for your money: making a budget, planning meals and snacks, and making a shopping list.

    • judylawrence
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      Thanks Vito. Those three ways are certainly valuable when getting a better handle on one’s money management. Do you have any examples of how much you may have saved with these techniques?

    • judylawrence
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      Hello Vito, thanks for your comment. Making a budget and planning meals, snacks and shopping lists are definitely helpful tips for managing money more effectively. When it comes to making a budget, even though it sounds easy and obvious, from my 20 plus years in this business, budgets still are a challenge for many. Check out my free ecourse “Budgeting Without Tears” or The Budget Kit workbook for getting started.

  7. Rosa Small
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    To draw up a budget plan, you should start by jotting down all the money coming in to your household each month, such as salary, tax credits, child benefit, etc.

    • judylawrence
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      Thank you Rosa. The income is definitely critical, including the different forms of income as you clearly spelled out. Another step, just as important is outlining those expenses that go beyond the obvious fixed, variable and known expenses for each month when planning out your budget plan. That’s usually where most people stop. They forget to anticipate all the “other” expenses that are often not planned – those kid’s last minute sports expenses, a friend’s birthday party etc. One other expense to plan as anyone who is familiar with The Budget Kit is keenly aware, is the various periodic expenses that pop up throughout the year and so often seem to be emergencies – which they truly are not.

  8. judylawrence
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    Well, there certainly are SOME similarities between government and personal budgets, but our job is still to make suare we as consumers live within our own means and model to our children the same.

  9. judylawrence
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    I totally agree, Christian. The main point is coming up with a system that works for both parties and keeping the communication open.

  10. Rochelle O. Mcconnell
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    There you have it. A free envelope budget system that works and once implemented sets you free from credit card debt, anxiety, frustration, and the nagging child who wants you to buy something. Just show him the empty envelope! Of course, he will say to just take the money out of another category. Simply reply, “OK, should we have less food, electricity or clothes?” See how freeing this becomes?

    • judylawrence
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      Thanks Rochelle. The envelope system has been around for decades and definitely can make a difference. As far as the children are concerned, I would prefer to see a proactive approach of discussing the money situation in general and bring them in as collaborators to learn how to be more creative, and resourceful when it comes to having their needs or desires met. One wonderful tool in “The Budget Kit” 6th Ed. workbook is the “Needs/Wants List”. When children ask for something, rather than ignoring their wish, you can enter this on the list, thereby acknowledging them, yet taking that time to discuss ways to obtain that item. When some extra birthday or other gift money comes in, they can go back to that list and decide how they want to spend their gift money – learning priorities and delayed gratification in the process.

  11. judylawrence
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    I totally agree with you Christian. After all spending plans are all about finding ways to make the system work for you personally – throwing in some fun – having healthy, honest and open communication and still finding yourselves living within your means and feeling content about that.