Do you ever find that you have no money left at the end of the month? If so, you’re not the only one!
But more often than not, the reason for this isn’t because you can’t afford to pay your bills or that you don’t have enough money coming in. It’s because you have a few bad habits that are making it hard for you to stick to your budget.
Let;s ha a look at a few of them, Starting with the most important one of all….
Not knowing what your monthly budget actually is!
It’s surprising how many people don’t have a monthly budget at all let alone reassess it on a monthly basis to allow for any extra expenses or additional income that you have for the month. I know what my monthly budget is but what I need to get better at is having a quick look at it at the start of the month to allow for higher than normal outgoings (my water bill is a prime example as I pay it quarterly) so I know that I need to adjust elsewhere to make allowances for the extra spend there. Equally if we get more money than expected (like in a month where council tax isn’t payable) then I can do something useful with the money rather than just leaving it in the bank where it’s a safe bet it will get spent in no time.
Not keeping track of where you’re spending your money
It’s so important to know where your money is going each month because often, on paper, you should have money left over at the end of the month when in reality you have none. To figure out where your money is going then I would recommend keeping a spending diary for a month so you can write down EVERYTHING that you spend. You might be surprised to see how your spending on the small stuff can add up really quickly.
Not meal planning
I know, I always go on about meal planning but if you don’t meal plan then I would imagine it would be very hard to stick to your budget and definitely a struggle to try and shave money off your food spending.
Not planning for important occasions like Christmas and Birthdays
It’s not like Christmas and Birthdays sneak up on us is it? We know they’re coming so if you don’t want to feel the pinch in the months you have something important (and often expensive) to celebrate then make sure you plan ahead for it.
Not having some money set aside for emergencies
I know this one isn’t as easy as the rest because it’s difficult to put money aside but trust me, you could be very glad of it one day. What if your boiler breaks down and you need to pay extortionate charges for a call out fee and a repair? This happened to us once and it cost us a fortune that we hadn’t allowed for which meant that we had a very tight month until payday!
As an extra to this one, you can take out cover to protect you when some things happen – after our first boiler problem we took out boiler insurance with British Gas which was a huge relief when we woke up last Christmas to no heating. They couldn’t have been better and actually would have come out to us on Christmas day if we’d asked them to. As it was we were happy to wait as we didn’t want to pull someone away from Christmas with their family and we spent a lovely day snuggled under blankets. 😉
Do any of these sound like habits you need to break?
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Image credit: Shutterstock, inxti