8 budget questions to ask yourself every month


Whether you use apps, Excel spreadsheets, or pens and notebooks, your budget is not blindly copied month after month.

You should spend a little time at the end of each month or early next month to reflect on your financial situation and determine whether you need to make any adjustments for the next month.

Your spending may not be the same every month, so neither should your budget.

8 budget issues to reflect on every month

Ask yourself these questions End your budget Make the best spending plan for the next month each month.

1. How does my actual expenditure compare to my estimated expenditure?

This is the question you most want to ask yourself when you reflect on your spending in the past few weeks.

Does your actual expenditure match the amount you intend to spend in each budget category? Where are you overspending? In what areas did you spend less than expected?

2. How do I want to allocate the remaining funds of the previous month?

If your final expenditure is lower than your budget for the month, what are your plans for this extra money?

You have a few options. You can transfer this money to the next month’s budget so that you have more money available.You can save money-whether it is to build your emergency fund to supplement what you are doing Sinking fund Or increase short-term or long-term savings goals.

You can invest your money in Irish Republican Army or Taxable Brokerage Account. You can give back by donating to non-profit organizations. Or you may want to use the money to reward yourself.

It all depends on you.

3. What are the reasons for any overspending?

If you spend more money than expected, don’t be too harsh on yourself, but take some time to analyze the reasons for the overspending.

Are you turning to retail therapy to offset a stressful week? Has there been an emergency that you could not foresee?

It is important to have an emergency fund so that funds can be drawn from it in the event of an accident.Look at these steps Start emergency fund.

Do you order too much takeaway? Did you forget to include the main expenses in your budget? Has your budget been so severely restricted from the start that your spending limits are unrealistic?

Reflect on why you are spending more than you planned, and what you can do differently next month.

4. Do I need to adjust my spending limit for the next month?

As mentioned earlier, if your spending tends to fluctuate, you don’t want to copy and paste your budget from month to month.

There may be some Budget category Be consistent, such as the rent you pay or your monthly cell phone bill.

However, you may pay higher electricity bills when the temperature rises in cold months or when the air conditioner is turned on in hot months. If you are in a mixed family and have your stepchildren living with you every other weekend, you will need to budget more for groceries when you have a complete house.

If you have upcoming events, special occasions or trips next month, you will need to adjust your budget. If you just paid off your credit card or loan, you will need to reallocate the funds used to repay the debt.

If you are always over or under budget in a particular budget category, you should also adjust your spending limit-for example, if your default monthly gas budget is $50, but you always spend about $75 each month Come on. If you have worked hard to cut costs in this category, your spending limits may not be suitable for your situation.

5. How do I feel about my purchase?

In addition to considering the dollars and cents spent, it’s also important to pay attention to the feelings related to expenditures—especially when it comes to discretionary expenditures.

Are you satisfied with what you bought? Are they useful? Did your purchase bring you happiness? Or do you feel that you are wasting money or are eager to buy? Do you have any regrets?

Paying close attention to your emotions after spending money can help you identify patterns that may need to be corrected.For example, if you often regret Impulse buying What you do, you can keep a list of things you want to buy, but give yourself a week or more to think about it instead of buying it on the spot.

Want to incorporate more mindfulness into your budget?try Hanging pictures, A long-standing Japanese budget method.

6. How can I track my goals?

When you end your budget for one month and create a budget for the next month, it’s a good time to check your progress Money goal.

Are you on the right track to achieve your savings goals? How is your debt repayment plan progressing? Has your credit score gone up?

The ultimate purpose of your budget is to plan your funds so that you can achieve your financial priorities. It’s great to pay your bills on time and have enough money to pay for the necessities every day-but don’t forget your overall goals.

7. Where can I reduce expenses?

When making a monthly budget, check your spending last month to see where you can Reduce expense.

If you can eliminate unnecessary expenses, such as unused subscriptions, you will have more leeway. Consider what services you can do on your own for what you pay, such as styling your hair at home instead of going to a salon.

Don’t just focus on discretionary spending. Review your basic purchases and determine a way to reduce costs. This is one: call your insurance company to ask about available discounts or whether they match the competitor’s offer. Or try to reduce utility bills by paying more attention to your water and electricity usage.

8. How to increase income?

No matter how good your money management is, if you don’t bring in enough income, you can’t budget your path to wealth.

You can increase your income in many ways.At work, you can ask for overtime, overtime or Negotiate a salary increase. You can supplement your daily work with a job sideline Or a series of Passive income. You can also increase your cash flow in the following ways Sell ​​things near your home.

Finding a higher-paying job is another way to increase income.Be careful not to succumb Lifestyle inflation. Focus on your personal financial goals instead of upgrading your lifestyle to keep up with Jones.

Nicole Dow is the senior writer of The Penny Hoarder.


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