Four Tips To Help Overcome Fear of the Budgeting Process : Our September 2016 Budget Report

  STOP ALLOWING FEAR TO GET IN THE WAY OF YOUR FINANCIAL PROGRESS   If you need help budgeting money do yourself a favour and don’t just “try” to understand how the budgeting process works without experiencing how it will and can affect your life. This is the problem with people who think budgeting is a joke and not needed, they place negative thoughts in their mind from the start instead of motivational action words like, “I will”. Not everyone needs a budget especially if money is not a concern for them. What I like to focus on here though is how much money they could be saving or putting towards other matters instead of spending without warning. So for example, if you spend $400 a month on groceries from a high-end grocer where you could get the exact products at a lower-priced grocery store why wouldn’t you do that? Take the extra cash you save and invest it, donate it or buy extra food to give to the food bank. My point is that we waste money like it’s water when we can conserve it and put it to good use. You don’t care? That’s fine too but don’t […]

Add 1 Cup of Budget Inspection And Watch Your Bread Rise : Our August 2016 Budget Report

DON’T MAKE THIS MISTAKE WHEN CREATING YOUR FINANCIAL RECIPE.   By mistake I don’t mean turning the oven on and burning your budget either as I know some people despise using a budget. I have nothing against you because what’s yours is yours and what’s mine is mine. Those of you who WANT to get RID of DEBT and build a thundering savings account and sizable retirement fund I have one unique financial tip for you-learn to read a recipe. I’m not the Mike Holmes of Budgeting nor the Jamie Oliver of the kitchen but I do know how to read a recipe and I do know how to use a budget. What I’ve learned is that it’s not about just the planning stage it’s everything in between and on-going maintenance similar to being a homeowner or naked Chef.   Read a recipe and savour your budget   Once you understand the basics of a recipe especially when it comes to baking you will understand just how precise you need to be to have the best product. Finding a recipe you are interested in creating at home means you should read the entire recipe from beginning to end. Today we […]

There’s One Major Budget Tool Needed For Success : Our May 2016 Budget Report

MAKE MONEY NOW, SAVE IT, SPEND IT AND START ALL OVER AGAIN   If another month has come and gone and you have failed to balance your budget that doesn’t mean your efforts failed you. It simply means you need to focus on budget categories that need attention, bringing in more money and spending less. There is one tool more important than all of the above especially for people who give up on budgeting because it’s not working for them. If you’re not already doing this, you should be. Let me explain. For starters please don’t forget that there will never be a perfect budget as it will always have flaws. Even we have good months and bad months and we’re debt free which wasn’t an easy journey. What you have saved in the bank or with investments has nothing to do with whether you meet your monthly budget goals.   Find this tool and you’ll succeed   I’m afraid the one tool that you need to start using a budget is not an actual budget, that comes after and to be honest doesn’t take that much effort. With all the free budget spreadsheets available online it’s easy peasy. What […]

3 Budget Preparation Steps Not To Be Missed : Our April 2016 Budget Report

YOU CAN’T BUILD A BUDGET WITHOUT BLUEPRINTS   Budget preparation is an essential action step that if you pretend you don’t need you’ll never get past GO with your finances! Creating a personal budget doesn’t have to be complicated however the fine details certainly help to assess where existing or potential problems may sneak up.  Using a financial spreadsheet to document everything to do with money coming in and going out of your life is in my opinion an essential tool for everyone, even if you think you don’t need it. You do! Every month before you sit down to figure out your finances there are budget preparation steps that you don’t want to miss. The reason for this is because if you put half the effort into your monthly budget you’ll only get partial or potentially inaccurate results. Like you, budgeting was new for us years ago and took time for us to get to familiar with but over time we can safely say we are in a place where we confidently collect the monthly data we need. If you are one of those people who think you can search the web for a free budget template and think […]

A Balanced Budget Doesn’t Make It Unbreakable : January 2016 Monthly Budget Review

BALANCE IS NEVER A STEADY VARIABLE IN FINANCE   I often hear that a budget is ready to go once it is balanced but a balanced budget doesn’t mean that it can’t incur hiccups along the way. Someone asked me how we could possibly budget every single month. “Isn’t it time-consuming?” After a bit of practice it gets easier BUT is your life not worth the effort? Think about that for a second. Anything you do to better your life IS worth it. It’s not hard to make a budget look pretty with colours and numbers but numbers are like credit, once you spend it you are stuck with it. You still have to pay it back. What I’m trying to say is that anyone can say they have a balanced budget and still screw it up. Too many people rely on a fixed balanced budget and ignore it for the rest of the year as if it’s bulletproof.  This is a huge mistake in my opinion because when it comes time to review your budget the last thing you want to find out is that you messed up along the way and didn’t pick up the broken pieces. Even […]

How We Effectively Curb Spending When We Have To : November 2015 Budget Update

PUT YOURSELF IN FRONT OF MONEY SO YOU’RE ALWAYS ONE STEP AHEAD   When we have to curb spending in our budget there are ways that have effectively helped us conquer the money demons over the years. Essentially a budget is a tool that we use to track our cash flow. We want to know what’s coming in, what’s going out and how much money is staying. These financial numbers were crucial to our debt freedom success over the years. Budgeting may get negative connotations from those who don’t believe in it but for many people a budget is a financial life-saver. What I believe is that if we hadn’t used our budget we’d still have a mortgage and other debts to pay off. Sure, there are other ways to track your finances but for us working with numbers in our head or guesstimating wasn’t getting us to our end goal fast enough. Now that 2015 is drawing to a close we will have a full year of budget results to evaluate for the upcoming new year. Waiting until the end of the year to curb spending is not ideal but if you are budget ninjas like we are a […]

How many budget categories should I have? : Sept 2015 Budget Update

YOU ARE THE BUDGET MAKER   Being the budget maker means that you are in control of your budget including how many budget categories you decide to use every month. I counted how many budget categories we have in our monthly budget and came up with 34. Honestly, I thought there would be more than what there actually is. When I designed our budget years ago the thought never crossed our mind to only have a few budget categories. I have seen many budgets out there that might only cover common fixed expenses and everything else is bundled into one or two other budget categories. That type of budget would never work for our family. Since we are so picky about the fine detail and wanting to know exactly where our money is going every month I thought we did reasonably well with as many budget categories that we created. I’ve also seen some budgets that have so many categories that I wonder if we’re doing enough. We are our own worst critics when it comes to our finances however it’s all about finding what works for you. I received a short email from a fan who wanted to ask […]

When should you evaluate your monthly budget? : August 2015 Budget Update

EVERYTHING TO DO WITH MONEY CHANGES   When should a monthly budget be evaluated? This seems to be the hot question the last few months of every year in my inbox. I wish I had all the right answers for those fans who want to become debt free and put all their financial worries behind them. In all honesty money concerns never end but what I do have is our experiences to share. If you haven’t realized it yet you will notice that everything to do with your money will change as will the way you think about your finances. Over the years we have found that we change the way we think about our money and how we manage it. If you rely on a monthly budget to manage your finances a serious evaluation must be done at the end of the year. What does this mean? It means you look at every budget month for the year to see where you can make improvements. You will also be armed with numbers which is critical to the success of building a monthly budget for the new year. The first year we started our monthly budget we realized that we […]

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