Are You Afraid Of Budget Prison?
By Gregory Walding
Do you put living on a budget is the same category as living on a diet? I know most people would rather die than live on a budget. But, did you know, that living without a budget will get you into a lot of trouble.
Before we get started with using a budget, let’s change the way we think about the budget. First, let’s call it a money plan instead of a budget. You know what they say; if you fail to plan then you plan to fail.
What we want to do is plan where our money is going before we get the money. Sounds easy, but don’t let that fool you. How many times during the month have you had unexpected expenses that just wiped out any chance of following a plan? The way to handle those times is to actually plan for them. Looks familiar doesn’t it.
Take any great plan and see what is involved. They have a plan A and a plan B and a plan C and so forth. That means they have planned for all kinds of unexpected events and they have thought about how they were going to handle it when the events occur.
You need to do the same with you money plan (budget). One of the items on the budget should be for unexpected expenses. You should accumulate this money each month and not spend it if no unexpected event occurs. When one does occur, just take the money from this budget item and use it to keep your plan in place.
If you do have an unexpected expense and the money for this item is not large enough to cover it, then it is time for plan B. Plan B would be to prioritize the items in your budget, which you should have done already, in the order that they will be paid. A good order of priority would be (1) food, (2) housing along with utilities, (3) transportation including gasoline, insurance and maintenance and (4) the remaining bills.
The reasoning behind this list is that to be able to bring the income into your home, you need to eat to have the strength to work, you need a place to live to get rest, you need a way to get back and forth to work and then the rest is what you pay for.
Now, looking at this as a plan instead of prison, you can see where this will relieve a lot of stress and headaches for you. It is much easier if you know ahead of time what you are going do if something happens than it is if you have to make decisions all of the time.
And one last thing, if you want your money plan to be something you can actually use, then put an item in it for money to have fun. If you don’t, the plan won’t last long.
To really help out with your money plan, check out some of the information at http://www.extremepersonalfinance.com
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