Take a moment this month to review your last bank statement. See if you have everything captured in your budget. Were you sure to add in any additional costs for birthdays, vet visits, haircuts, oil changes, and doctor appointments? Being sure every expense has a budget item is key in getting out of debt and living within your means.
1. Do you get paid weekly or biweekly?
Go ahead and plan out the rest of the year’s budget and be sure to pay attention to those extra paychecks. There are, at least, two that come each year. Those extra paychecks are a great opportunity to pay down debt with a chunk of money. Be sure to leave money for any bills that are due during that time as well as groceries and gas.
2. How is your emergency fund?
If you are stealing from your emergency fund each week then your budget may need another look. Your goal is to have at least a thousand dollars in there to start for any emergency that may arise.
If you are stealing from your emergency fund each week then your budget may need another look.
3. Trim the fat.
Are there any expenses that have slipped back into the budget that you can get rid of? Cable is the first thing we cut when we started to try to pay off debt. It’s a costly expense that wasn’t a need. Avoid stores that you can shop for multiple things at once. These stores always get you in trouble as you end up going down more aisles than you normally would and are bound to find an item on sale or marked down that you can justify putting in your cart.
4. Plan ahead.
- Add in money for a Christmas budget starting in July. Set aside a little bit of money each paycheck through December to dedicate to Christmas presents. Download our free Christmas planner.
- Plan and budget one day to buy cards for birthdays through the rest of the year.
- Plan and budget for winter wardrobes for children and yourself. I don’t normally buy clothes throughout the year. I usually end up buying clothes for kids during a season change. I pick a weekend that a major store has a great sale on clothes and go that weekend to stock up on new sizes for the season.
If you are not aligned, this is a great time to adjust and commit to looking at your budget every month and adjust where needed. Be realistic about your budget, but be accountable.
Our friends at brightpeak financial may also be able to assist with your financial goals.
How often do you and your spouse hold a family budget review?
Tara Norman is a homeschoolng SAHM to four kids and has been married 10 years to the love of her life, Paul Norman.