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The Basics of Budgeting Your Finances

Aug 7, 2008
Managing personal finances can be a big problem for many people. For some, it may be a tedious task of listing and pairing bills and expenses with income and monetary resources. For others, it may be the dreaded experience of limiting oneself to certain types of food, places to go to, and activities and hobbies to engage in. Unfortunately, for many people, it may be the startling realization that one can no longer pursue what he/she always wanted to do.

Regardless of how difficult it may seem, people should learn the art of budgeting and maximizing the potentials of their personal finances. This is because budgeting helps us in ensuring our future sustenance, if not the possibility of acquiring our aspired wealth and prosperity. To ease the burden of budgeting, here are some popular methods that can help you,

Cash your way out

This method requires you to use cash and only cash for all your expenses. This means that you ought to cash your checks and use it to pay your bills and your everyday expenses. You can also opt to cash your checks and then deposit the money on a savings account. When using a bank account, make regular withdrawals from your savings for your weekly allowances and your monthly bills.

Also, say goodbye to your credit cards. These give you ease in spending your money but they hinder you from saving your income. Note that the cash method requires you to pay everything using your cash on hand.

However, this method may be difficult to implement especially if you have mortgage payments and/or other bills that require you to allow banks and utility companies to automatically withdraw from your bank accounts or your monthly salary.

If possible, do try to list down all your expenses. At the end of every week or every month, you can determine if your income covers your expenses by examining how much money you have left.

Use envelopes

The envelope method is slightly different from the cash method in the sense that the latter requires a little more planning. You still need to cash your paychecks and other monetary resources. However, you also need to list down all your presumed bills and expenses for the week or the month. After determining your expenses, assign a cash envelope for each of the expected expenses. Note than you need to label the envelopes properly so as to avoid confusion during budget allocations.

In some cases, you ought to categorize your envelopes according to your priorities, to the amount that you put in each of them, or based on how frequent the bill for that expense comes out every month.

After you have finished labeling and categorizing your envelopes, you can then divide your cash into each of the expected expenses. Practice proper budget allocation by putting cash in the respective envelopes. This way, you will know exactly how you should spend your money, and you can immediately determine if it is enough for you. At the end of the month, this method will also help you determine which personal necessity demands more of your budget, and which expenses should be lessened so as to give way to your other pertinent needs.
About the Author
If you have taken a loan out in the UK within the past 10 years it is quite possible it could be classed as an unenforceable loan agreement . Consumer Credit Claims can help you make your claim.
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