Budgeting is the most important and effective tool for getting our finances under control.
Have you ever heard of a successful business that doesn’t have any plans? I’m sure you haven’t, because businesses without plans don’t last very long. And in business, at the heart of every plan is a budget.
A business’ budget is designed to maintain financial control and to prevent money being wasted. These are the same goals as yours personally, so you have to treat yourself like a business.
Budgeting! The very mention of it makes us wince. Why? Well, I think it’s because budgeting confronts us with just how much money slips through our fingers- and how little we have to show for it.
This time, we will cover the personal side and in later issues, business.
Budgeting encourages us to take a disciplined approach to spending and saving, enabling us to reach short, medium and long term goals which otherwise might prove unattainable. It helps us find extra money to put into investments (e.g. property, shares, investment portfolios etc.) or to pay for a holiday.
A budget tells you where your money is going, where you can cut back, and where you can save.
When completing a personal budget there are several points to remember:
-Discipline has rewards –
Without the discipline of a mortgage you would never pay your home off and without the discipline of a budget you would never save.
A budget is not a rigid document designed to make your life miserable. It’s a flexible tool designed to make your life better.
-Be realistic –
Put together a sensible, real-life family budget.
-Be flexible -
Don’t despair if circumstances change. Review as necessary but at least every six months. Business fine-tune their budgets frequently.
-Allow for some fun -
Plan for that holiday or evenings out.
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