The new year is famous for kick-starting goal-setting and fueling determination. But toward the end of January, it’s also common for many to run out of gas, leaving these goals behind.
If 2019 is supposed to be your year to reach financial stability, here a few tips that can help keep you from abandoning your budgeting resolution.
Bring as much as you can spend
This long-time budgeting rule can help you limit your spending while shopping. By bringing as much cash as you are willing to spend (and leaving your cards behind), you can keep yourself from overspending in stores.
An alternative way to do this without using cash is to only use your debit card and keep your credit card at home. Keep as much money as you are allowing yourself to spend in your checking account.
Remove saved credit card history
Today, many people conduct their shopping online. Features that remember your credit card information make it easier to spend money without thinking twice.
To remove this temptation, delete your saved credit card information so that it’s more of a hassle to buy things online. Having to go through the trouble of finding your card and typing all of its information in can be time-consuming enough to keep you from going through with an unnecessary purchase.
Experiment with different types of spending
Do you tend to save cash or spend it? Will putting money into a savings account keep you from spending? Would you spend less if you had to write out a check? Consider which types of spending methods might encourage or discourage your spending.
Get a budgeting app
Smartphone budgeting applications can do the math for you to determine what type of budget makes sense for you and even how much you should spend on a daily basis to stay within your determined budget.
Some of these programs are free, while others may come with a price. Start out with a free app and see if you can stick to it. If you are finding that advanced options would help, upgrading to an app you pay for may make you want to stick to using it.
Check your bank accounts at least once per week
“Out of sight, out of mind,” as they say. If you have a habit of spending more than you know you should but refuse to acknowledge it by looking at your account, it’s time to change.
You should be checking your bank accounts at least once per week to get an idea of how much you can spend before your next payment or check.
Sticking to a budget usually involves giving up luxuries. But only sticking to the necessities can become dull after a while. You can motivate yourself to hit certain budgeting goals if they come with a small reward. Reward yourself with something that is not an everyday necessity, but still affordable.
Speak to a lawyer
If you’re feeling in over your head, a budget may not be enough to get your finances back in order.
An attorney can help you determine if bankruptcy might be a better way to keep your house, car, wages and other assets from creditors while you work on rebuilding your funds.