The idea of budgeting can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. A family budget is simply a plan that helps you stay on track with your spending and saving goals.
Setting up a family budget is like taking an inventory of your financial situation and deciding what’s important to you as a family. Once you know where your money goes, you can make adjustments to save more or spend less.
Family Budgeting Tips
Here are some tips for creating a family budget:
List all of your sources of income and monthly expenses, including mortgage payments, rent or student loans, utilities bills and other fixed costs like food and clothing. Make sure to include any irregular expenses such as car repairs and medical bills that come up from time to time.
List all potential savings goals — from putting away money for college tuition down the road to paying cash for upcoming vacations — so that you have an idea of how much money you’ll need each month for those purposes.
Use this information as a guide when making spending decisions each month so that you don’t overspend on things like eating out more than once per week or buying new clothes when what you have works just fine.
In addition, make sure to set aside a percentage of your monthly income for savings. A good rule of thumb is to save at least 10% of your income for retirement and use another 5% or so for other savings goals.
If you have trouble saving money, consider using a savings account that pays interest. This way, your money will continue to grow without having to worry about it losing value due to inflation.
Join An Online Family Budget Course
There are a lot of online courses you can take to help you manage your money better. One great option is an online family budgeting class that teaches you how to get a handle on your spending and save more money. These courses usually include everything from step-by-step instructions for creating a budget to info about setting up savings accounts, retirement plans and other types of investments.