|Terry Rigg is the editor of the Budget Stretcher Newsletter. The
Budget Stretcher Newsletter is published monthly and is loaded with
information that will save you time and money everyday. Go to
http://www.homemoneyhelp.com for more information.
that horrifying word. The one that makes so many people cringe at
its very utterance. It seems like they could make a very good
spooky movie with the title "You Have To BUDGET!"
Yeah, that's a little dramatic but I
have been helping people with their personal finances for almost 30
years and it's not too far off base. The word scares the daylights
out of some people.
should see their faces when I tell them they are already budgeting
no matter whether they have anything written down or not. It's a
Whether you run your budget out of
your wallet or on a printed budget form you are still budgeting your
money. The main difference is that running your budget out of your
wallet doesn't have a plan or anyway to control your spending.
Maybe we should refer to managing our
finances as a road map instead of a budget. It doesn't sound quite
as bad and it identifies what you are doing more clearly.
Budgeting is exactly like taking a
trip in your car. You know where you are and where you want to go
but you need a road map to find out how to get there. You are simply
developing a plan or route if you prefer.
No one would even consider starting
out on a trip to unfamiliar places without a road map. Why would you
consider managing your money without a budget?
The reason most people give for not
budgeting their money is that it will deprive them of the things
that they want. They are right to a certain extent.
If they want something that they
can't afford then, if they are living by their budget, they won't be
able to get it right now. However, if they plan their budget
correctly they will eventually be able to get what they want and
know that they can afford it.
Almost all of the people that I have counseled
over the years either don't have a budget in place or wouldn't have
any idea of how to start one. This is one of the main reasons that
so many people are having serious financial problems.
Then you have the people that start a
budget and within a few days or weeks it's just sitting in a drawer
somewhere. Chances are that the budget they had was too difficult
and takes entirely too much time to manage. That's a big mistake.
A budget should be as simple as
possible and take only a few minutes on payday to manage. Sure, it
does take some time and effort to setup your budget properly but
after that you just sit down on payday, write out your bills, make a
few notations on your budget forms and do some filing. This is what
it takes to stick to a budget.
The best part about having a budget
is that you will always be able to answer the question we ask
ourselves many times in our lifetime, "Can I Afford That".
You will have the answer at your fingertips. Yep, sometimes the
answer will be NO!