Roxana Mercado, Loan Officer
The following money management habits can help you become a savvier planner and consumer.
Imagine this, you’ve had a long work week. Monday started off hectic and by Friday you are exhausted but feel you had a productive week. The weekend has arrived and that means time for yourself and family. The best part though, it is Friday and that means payday! Sweet, time to check your bank account. In this very moment, you realize your check was indeed deposited, but all the funds you had saved last week are now gone. Yikes! Can you recall the expenses you made? Were they even necessary?
This blog article is focused on money management, which is a crucial part of having healthy finances. Unfortunately, money management is not part of our regular school classes and it may not be something we learn at home. However, don’t be intimidated, there are simple and free steps you can take to have more control of your money and Capital Good Fund can show you how.
There are many factors that influence our time when prioritizing wants over needs. Consider this: If you woke up after snoozing your alarm multiple times during the week and preparing your breakfast at home was no longer an option, you might have been forced to stop by your local coffee shop for a meal before work. Buying breakfast can multiply the amount of your expenses than if you shopped at your grocery store for food items to prepare at home.
You need to invest time into planning for your meals. List out exactly what you need, find the best local deals, and prepare ahead of time. Try thirty minutes before going to bed to committing to prepping your meals for the following day. This will give you a sense of accomplishment and you will feel less rushed the next morning. Not only will you save money, this habit will also greatly contribute to having a well-balanced diet. You can still indulge as long as it does not deplete your budget. Need help creating a budget? Read on for additional free strategies to try.
Budgeting can be achieved in many ways. Whether you still use a physical planner or a fully developed online spreadsheet or no method at all, the following worksheet can guide you to choosing right tracking method. Check out Capital Good Fund’s Budgeting Document. It lists the most essential expenses and leaves room for the wants versus needs in the previous part of this article.
Please remember, creating new habits takes time. If you do overspend and unplanned expenses happens, don’t give up, instead do this: acknowledge it, determine the possibility of it happening again and document it on your budget tracking method! You will become a savvier planner and consumer by doing so. With time, you will have developed a budget that fits your lifestyle and specific needs.
A goal without a plan is just a wish - this expression captures the importance of financial management. Part of taking control of your expenses is having financial goals. This Budgeting Document can help you not only reduce expenses but also determine whether there is room for other improvements towards savings. Perhaps you can allow yourself to cut back on spending, but what is your plan with the funds remaining? What if there is no money left or enough money for your necessary expenses? Have you considered that you might need a raise or a better paying job? Create goals that are realistic. Describe your goals and list why they are necessary; write down how they will contribute to your budgeting, but most importantly, write down the steps you are willing to take in order to achieve them. Try using Good Fund’s Goal Sheet.
Hopefully, the money management tips we have discussed so far are helpful for you, but could be intimidating. It is best to stay on track with your budget planning and when the time is right, create a savings plan. Next, are are some final tips on financial stability.
Having savings can help fund college, vacations, retirement, but most importantly it can serve an as emergency fund. In life we have to consider that sometimes we cannot prepare for everything in life, but we can try! Your car could break down, you may lose your job, or you might have an expensive medical bill. There are easy ways to save for emergencies like these and no, you do not need to buy a fancy piggy bank.
The best way to save is by scheduling direct deposits into a savings account. Making an automatic deduction is great because you do not have to ponder about how much to save each week. Saving is rewarding. It is okay to start small! Click here for a free savings module!
Now that you’ve learned how to begin taking control of your finances, I would like to congratulate you! Taking the initiative to learn and implement new habits into your lifestyle can be intimidating, but rest assured you are more than capable of achieving your financial freedom. Check out our Full Financial Coaching and Credit Builder programs - click here to get started.