Money Saving Monday - Creating A Budget

I'm sure it's not news to you that, unless you have all the money in the world, you should probably have a budget, but how many of us actually do it? It can be difficult to see the necessity for a written budget. We sometimes feel like we are okay as long as we just mentally keep track of how much we are spending. Unfortunately, no matter how hard you try, we just can't remember it all. 

For the month of January, I challenge each of you to develop a family budget. No matter how much money you have or don't have, everyone needs a budget to know how they are spending and saving their money. January is the beginning of a new semester for me, and other college students, and a new year for everyone, so what better time to try again? 

Maybe you have tried a budget in the past and it just didn't work out. Try writing down the reasons you didn't like the system you were using. Maybe you need to track your money a different way. There are so many systems out there. This article from Bargaineering details five common budgeting systems. 

The most important thing is that you find a system that works for you and you stick to it. Doing nothing will likely end with overspending and panic in an emergency situation. 

My goal: To be diligent about using a budgeting spreadsheet for the month of January. This will give us a realistic view on how we spend our money and allow us to make financial goals for 2012. It will also allow us to assess what budgeting system will be the best fit for us. 

What about you? Will you give budgeting a try? Try this free budget worksheet to get started. You can edit categories, add your own, print and save. 

Do you use a budget? What system works best for you? Let me know in the comments below or join in the conversation at the Nest Candy Community! 

- - Happy Savings! - -


Kristy said...

I do a budget list for every month. The problem is sticking to it! It is way too easy for me to assume that I will just use my credit card if I run out of money and then give a larger payment the next month. But, I still just end up with this stubborn balance on my credit card. Argh.

Lot said...

This is a really good idea. We stick to a budget for a while and then digress. So your post is a good reminder to start doing it again. Any tips for keeping it up?