We’ve started this series to help people sort out and analyze their financial status as we already passed the first half of 2018. Summer is closer than ever and it is a good time to see where you are at with your New Year’s resolutions. Resolutions can be challenging to really attain — particularly in regards to your budget. But if you follow a few basic tips, you can make it easier to keep up your finances as you planned.
Listed below, and in the following series of the same title, are some fast personal finance tips you can use daily this summer to make it easy reaching your goals before the end of 2018. If you want to read the first article, click here: Mid-Year Personal Finance Tips 1
Write your goals down
Do you know that just writing down your goals makes you prone to actually reach them? Large or little, doesn’t matter, whether it is a car, a new dress, yoga pants, a bicycle, or a vacation, writing down your goals gives you a new perspective in your daily purchases. For example, drinking a coffee outside will look less appealing when you know that you are saving for the new running shoes you want.
Use the envelope budget method
Writing down what you spend, keeping bank and till slips are all very well, but what most people need is a system that will help collate all the data and keep you up to date with where you are at financially speaking. The Envelope Budget System is a great budgeting tool that’s easy to use and efficient.
Divide your expenses into categories such as food, gas, entertainment and so on; then put the cash amounts in the labeled envelopes. When you start this method to budget your finance, you can’t spend more than the allocated money in each category. Also, if you have any leftover money at the end of the period, you can transfer it to your saving account and start saving money without an extra effort.
Look for discount opportunities
Investing doesn’t only mean trading stocks or buying/selling real estate. You can get discounts by paying upfront for your recurring expenses and this is definitely considered as an investment. For example, if you are paying $50 per month for your swimming pool membership, you can offer to pay $500 upfront for the whole year. Most places will accept this offer, and so you can enjoy 2 months of free membership by investing the money you would pay anyway.
Use mobile banking
Seems ridiculous, but powerful: Just download and install your bank’s mobile application on your phone. So, you can easily check your account balance to find out if you are on track with your objectives. Not only using mobile banking makes you more mindful of your spending, but also it protects you against any fraud and warns you about overspending.
Know your actual hourly rate
When you have a regular job, you usually agree on a yearly salary. However, you get paid by your actual hourly fee and knowing it must be the basis of any funding or spending plan. Look at your pay stubs and find out exactly what you are taking home after taxes. By this way, you can easily analyze if it worths your time to do some stuff by yourself or delegate it to someone else while you are spending your time to improve your skills. Also, you better understand the value of the money when you know how much you make after a very tiring hour of work and you tend to spend less on unnecessary items.