Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Every Budget Deserves A Treat

Making a budget, using the budget and sticking to it does not have to be without its perks. After you have identified what you MUST budget for (utilities, rent, etc), make sure you identify your weaknesses (the latte, the take out, recreational activities). Once you have established the mandatory catogories, go back and see if you have room for a little "mad money". If like Bella, take-outs are your weakness put them in for the last Saturday of every month. Like the latte, treat yourself once a week on a Monday Morning.

Creating a budget and a savings plan shouldn't be joyless. If it is you are likely to fail and find yourself back on the wrong track. There is nothing shameful or guilty about scheduling a treat. It will perk you up and give you something to work towards each month. Take a good hard look at your income, where your money is going, and is there any "wiggle" room. It will really help your moral if you can identify "mad money' for you, your partner and your family!

Make sure that your treat is not excessive. We're not talking about a $100 hair cut, having your nails done and spa treatment. And for our male readers, we are not taking about attending EVERY sports game! Look for the little things that will not damage your budget. The excessive treats can be planned for in adavnce on a yearly expenses plan and you can save for those accordingly, so not to take from your budget.

Follow these six simple steps and you'll find yourself less frustrated:

Step 1: Identify your spending weaknesses.
Step 2. Plan in some "Mad Money" to cover the "weakness" aka treat.
Step 3. Do not do it daily. Everything is better in moderation.
Step 4: Your "treat" should not be excessive.
Step 5: Do not use the credit card.
Step 6: Do not feel guilty. You planned for it and the budget allowed for it!

Remember all work and no play makes for dull times, so throw in a little planned, budget friendly treat and it'll brighten up your month!

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