Every year many people make New Year’s resolutions, whether they decide that this year they are going to get more exercise, lose weight or be more money savvy. The problem is that sticking to a New Years resolution can be quite tricky. Sticking to a budget, especially if you are not used to one, can be even trickier.
If you want 2020 to be the year that you finally take control of your spending and start reducing your debts, then here are a few things that might help you to stick to your “New Year’s resolution!”.
Write a budget
The first place to begin with spending a little better, especially when you have a goal in mind, is to sit down and take a proper look at your spending. You don’t need a fancy computer programme to do this, just a piece of paper and a pen. Write down your income and then work out all your outgoings; the ones that stay the say every month such as your direct debits and then the ones that might change. Also, ensure that you allow some money for incidentals such as a birthday or unexpected repair bill.
If you have very little left over then now is a good time to see if there are any economies you can make such as cancelling a gym membership you never use or shopping around for better deals on your utilities. If you make some saving this way, redirect that money to a savings account to help you pay off your debts.
It might sound a bit silly but if you have freed up some money then setting up a regular transfer to your savings account is the best way forward. If the money is in your current account you are more likely to spend it rather than save it. So, set up a payment that goes into your savings automatically each month – this is a really effective and simple way to save.
Do not just renew your gas and electricity with your current supplier. Shop around to see if you can find a better deal – very often you will find something that will save you money and switching is usually a very simple process. This is something you should also look at with your insurance policies – of course staying with your current company is easy, but swapping really isn’t that much harder and could end up saving you quite a bit of money that you could put towards your debts
If your downfall is spending on your credit and debit cards, then use cash. If you have given yourself a budget for food each week, withdraw that amount in cash. You are more likely to make better choices when you have limited your spending in this way. And, it is a great way of helping you budget. If you are worried you won’t be able to keep to your food budget then make a shopping list and stick to that, pretty soon this will become second nature to you.