Almost every family sometimes faces financial difficulties. And often they arise due to not efficient leading of the couple budget. If properly dispose of funds, such difficulties can be foreseen. How to stop living from paycheck to paycheck and start saving money? We are going to share some easy steps with you today.
Managing finances at home are real art. Because you have to take into account the needs of every member of the family – husband, wife, and children. Therefore, differences may arise. However, while planning a family budget, the couple increases financial managing skills and learns how to better control their funds. And this allows you to spend your savings properly. For example, you can quickly pay off debts, if any. And also save for your big dream. A result of this will be a significant improvement in the financial condition of the family.
Tips to tackle budget planning
Best of all, if all family members take part in the planning process. If the manager of the family budget will be only one person, the rest should trust him unconditionally.
Start the planning of family budget with an analysis of income and expenses from the previous periods. About the last three months. In this way, you will get the data of the latest financial situation and condition of the budget. Then, carefully write down all your income and expenses for this period. And then analyze these numbers and think about the ways of optimization.
Planning a family budget can be easy if you do it at least once a month. But that also means that you have to provide a plan for a period of 30 days if it is hard for you to plan in so many days in advance, start with discussing your potential buys for a week. Start from small and make the period bigger; it should be easy for you, first of all. So, choose a time period that suits your lifestyle and income the best.
First of all, plan revenues from all financial sources of the family. Not only salary is included, but social assistance and various sources of additional income.
Now get down to planning expenses. The latter should be immediately divided into four groups: expenses for the general need of a family, expenses for children, personal expenses of the husband, and the personal expenses of the wife. And then make a project for the expenses of each category, upgrading them taking their urgency into account. Of course, there will be some expenses you can’t give up. But you have to be completely honest and face reality. Don’t be ashamed of spending too much on food or shopping, if you were getting away with these sums, just consider them in your budget plan.
First of all, it is necessary to allocate funds to repay loans and debts, if any. Only when you pull this off you should start planning the expanses of your own family. This includes utilities, food, medicines, and transportation. It is also worth creating an item of “contingency” if any health-related problems appear or someone breaks an expensive needed piece of household appliances. And do not forget about the means for fun and entertainment.
After the family budget is planned, it is necessary to strictly adhere to the established plan and write down everyday expenses and income, follow them, and calculate. This can be done, for example, in a notebook. All items of outlay are written there and checks for purchases are added to the same place.
A little more convenient way to maintain a couple ’s budget is using Excel. This program allows you to make the calculation automatic to save time and avoid mistakes. There are also programs specially developed for operating the budget. They can be paid or free. What is more, entire online services and installation programs exist on the market. (Yes, not only dating services for meeting Russian women for marriage can be so useful). The cost of a paid one is about 10-20 dollars. The most common apps for maintaining a family budget are AceMoney and Family 10.
Whatever method of budget management you choose, at the end of the month, you should always analyze how accurately the planned budget has been more than fulfilled. If revenues were more than planned, and expenses were less, then the budget can be considered over-fulfilled. If, on the contrary, it is unfulfilled. In this case, it is necessary to analyze what caused the failure to fulfill the plan of income and expenses and take these errors into account when planning the family budget for the next period.
Plan in advance
After the analysis of your mistakes, plan the family budget for the next time period and try to avoid past faults. With every month you will learn more, and soon, managing the budget will be easy for you! There is always a room for improvement, so work on it persistently, and you will see a result.