If making the money last until the end of the month is already a big battle, imagine getting it so you can achieve some dreams! Want to buy a new car, get out of the rental or make that vacation trip without worrying about expenses? Well, know that it is possible, provided you have organization and discipline with your household budget.
Incidentally, it is worth telling you what budget is the money available to pay the bills. But that does not mean it has to be all the money you get, you see? You can allocate a portion of this income to other investments, being prepared for any emergency.
Identify the expenses
You know by heart how much you make over the course of the month, right? But how much do you spend? Do you know exactly how you use your income? Identifying what your expenses are should be the first measure to put the household budget up to date.
Start with the most obvious ones, such as energy, water, rent, and provision of the car. Then move on to the less notable ones, like the coffee from the bakery you get every morning, or the biweekly magazine you buy or take out with your friends on weekends. Whatever your routine, it is important to identify each expense.
Categorize your expenses
After finishing the expense list, group them into larger categories so you can see where your money is going. You can have categories called, for example, from:
- Household expenses;
- Food – for meals made outside the home;
- Superfluous expenses.
Find out what are the fixed expenses, the ones you have every month, and the variable expenses, like the credit card bill, for example. In general, the variables are the ones that most consume your budget, because they are concentrated in the unnecessary expenses. But that does not mean you can not save on fixed expenses too, okay? We’ll talk about this later.
Start to control
The financial lack of control happens precisely because the tendency is to think that it is possible to keep everything organized only in memory. However, do a quick exercise now: look at the past week and try to think about how you spent your money. Harder than you’d imagined, right? So the best thing to do is choose a method of control.
You can do a manual control, in a notebook, writing down all your daily expenses. The only problem, in this case, is that relying on memory and committing to write it down every day can be a bit risky. After all, you certainly have other things to do. So how to solve?
A fairly viable alternative is to use spreadsheets to shed revenues and expenses. With them, you can create formulas and get balances, sums, and other results that will help you more easily identify your expenses through consumption charts, for example.
There is also the possibility of using an application to control the domestic budget. Nowadays, several companies offer services (both free and paid) for this purpose, with apps that can be accessed by the computer or the smartphone. And the best is that you can update your control in real time, reducing the chances of forgetting some release!
Involve the whole family
Are you really willing to start controlling your spending? Great! Only with this, a very important step has already been overcome. However, if your family does not enter into the same vibration, your whole disposition may not prevail. In this phase of control, therefore, it is necessary to involve the whole house!
Hold periodic family gatherings and seek the engagement of everyone. It is important that they participate in choosing the form of control and identification of expenses. It is also good that everyone has access to control, to follow their progress whenever they want. The key is to treat the subject with enthusiasm, making them understand that it is a good practice and not an obligation, a tactic that will lead to the achievement of important dreams and the achievement of a better quality of life.
Design your cash flow
The cash flow is nothing more than the control of the monthly receipts and exits, serving as a thermometer to know how many times you use your bank account. Based on fixed and variable expenses, you can predict how much you will spend month to month, as well as how much money you have to pay the bills.
If you still cannot save, you’ll know at least when you’ll be able to start, because cash flow signals leftover budget. From there, you can think about the dreams to be made and the planning for it!
Have financial goals
Goals are the reflection of your desire to organize and control the domestic budget more efficiently. They will help you identify where you can reduce spending and thus generate a greater capital accumulation so that you can pursue your goals.
Set collective goals as well
Since we are talking about involving the whole house, the family must also participate in this stage. Some people, especially children and adolescents, tend to feel distant from the practice of planning. And this can make your decisions take the opposite course of other family goals.
To engage everyone, therefore, make the family see itself as a team. All together should thus help reduce the bills of the house! In this scenario, when one fails, the other can help to remember. In this way, everyone absorbs healthy financial habits, taking this learning through life.
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