I got asked on the Tweety on Saturday what is my best budgeting tip, and it got me thinking that I really don’t have a “budgeting” tip, as budgeting is really a tool for an entire lifestyle you are choosing. My response was a bit flippant:
@commoncentsmom Tip? Spend less than you make 🙂 Avoid lifestyle creep always. Live like you did when you were 24
— Big Cajun Man (@bigcajunman) January 18, 2014
But it’s not like I haven’t talked about Lifestyle Creep before, it’s insidious in many folks lives. Budgeting tips are fine, but budgeting is really kind of useless if you just make up a list of things you think you can save money on, without thinking about things first.
Best Budgeting Techniques?
The easiest budgeting method from my book is, if you use Quicken or something like that to track your spending, look at how much you spent last year in major areas, and try to do that again this year. I hear you saying, “But BCM that isn’t saving”, no not really but it proves that you can follow a budget. If you get a pay raise then suddenly you are ahead of the game. Next year, do the same thing again, and you’ll be a little farther ahead, etc., etc.,. Sounds simple doesn’t it? It can be, if you want to do it.
Getting rid of debt is another budgeting tool too (in an obtuse way). If you can get rid of each debt, and then use the payments you used to get rid of that debt to save (or better still pay down other debts) (while continuing to live within your means, and not increase your debt), you are budgeting too (or at least spending within your means).
Any other budgeting tips out there?