How to Create a Budget and Save Money

Particularly in these difficult economic times, you may be wondering how to create a budget and save money.  Well, wonder no more, because I, your wonder-budget extraordinaire, am here to help.A Pile of Money

1.  Eliminate unnecessary little expenditures.  If you take nothing else away from this article, remember this step.  Little purchases that don’t seem like much ($2.00 for coffee from Starbucks every day before work, ect.) can add up to be quite expansive by the end of the month.  Do yourself a favor, and skip the coffee.  I’m not saying to cut all of these little indulgences out of your life—get coffee once a week on Friday, rather than every day.

2.  Draw up a list of your fixed and variable expenses. Sit down, and draw up a list of your fixed expenses—ie. the things that you have to pay every month—as well as your variable expenses, or the A Woman Using a Computerexpenses that you can potentially cut.  You can’t very easily cut back on mortgage or rent payments, but you can probably cut back on the amount of money that you spend on entertainment or food.

3.  After determining your variable expenses, plan out how much money you want to spend on each category for the upcoming month. Try to stay within budget, and cut any expenses that you can afford to cut without losing any necessary services, or hating your life as a result.

4.  Substitute generic products for brand name products. When possible, substitute generic products for brand names products.  Sometimes the difference in quality is negligent.

5.  Buy in bulk, but only so long as you will actually use the product. A 50-pound jug of mayonnaise may seem like a good idea, but you’re unlikely to use all of that before it goes bad.

6.  Eat less red meat, and meat in general. Meat is expensive.  If possible, start having more meat-free meals.  Vegetable Kidney Beanscurry can be quite tasty.  Beans can also be used in a variety of dishes that can take the place of meat-heavy meals.

7.  Invest in a Netflix account rather than going out to the movies. Netflix allows you to stream as many movies as you want for the same price every month.

8.  Open windows and turn off or turn down the air conditioner/Wear extra layers and turn down the heat.

9.  Drive smoothly and stay within the speed limit. Cars burn gasoline faster when they are going at speeds over fifty miles an hour.  Keeping your tires properly inflated also helps.Odometer

10.  Think of every product–particularly the expensive ones–that you want to buy in terms of how many hours of work it would take you to be able to afford it.

11.  If possible, never put more on your credit card than you can afford to pay off in full every month.  Your credit card charges interest on any unpaid balance at the end of the month, and that can add up.  If you’re late with a payment one month, pay a few to fifteen dollars more than the required amount—there are additional charges that the credit card company won’t tell you about until your next credit card bill.

Good luck, and remember, the less that you spend on things you don’t need, the more you’ll have to spend on things that you do.

A Happy Family


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