7 Tips to Budget and Save Your Money Effectively
More often than not, the hardest part of doing anything is actually in getting that thing started. The same goes for budgeting and saving up for the future. Actually getting into the habit of effectively managing your finances can be a challenge, so you need to get started somewhere. Below, we highlight some of the most useful tips you can follow to help you develop a practical and realistic plan for your finances.
Record your expenses
Note down everything. Record all your monthly utility bills from electricity, water, internet down to your Netflix and Spotify subscriptions. Record your daily commuting expenses, weekly grocery expenses, and the like. Put them all on a spreadsheet that you can access and update regularly. This way, you’ll be able to determine exactly how much you spend at a given period and budget your money accordingly.
Set automatic savings
After learning about how much you spend on your necessities, it’s now time to put aside a portion of your earnings. You need to be able to commit a realistic number. Save up 20% each payday? Save up 10% every month? It’s up to you. Put this money on a bank account that would be harder to withdraw money from, such as a passbook account. Yes, it is old school, but it works! And you need to do it, regularly, too. The keyword here is “regularly.” Your savings wouldn’t grow unless you develop a nice rhythm for yourself.
Have a goal
A lot of people have a hard time saving up simply because they find it hard to set anything to save for. As with anything in life, you need a goal or a purpose. This goal shouldn’t be about buying the latest iPhone model before 2021, or getting your dream pair of kicks this Christmas. Say something like, “By the end of this year, I will have PHP 50,000 in emergency funds.” Figure out how long it would take you to save it and stick to this plan.
Learn to prioritize
After getting a clear grasp of what your usual expenses are and what savings goals you have, it’s now time to put it into action. Having a budget plan in place doesn’t mean your needs should take a backseat, though. For instance, you’re going to need an appointment with your dentist later this year, so don’t delay just because it’s not on your budget. Setting this visit today might even save you more money than going under a major operation years later for your impacted wisdom tooth extraction.
Avoid unnecessary spending
Sometimes one can’t help but give in at the sight of a “70% off on all items” or a “Buy 1, take 1” sign. What’s a few hundred or thousand pesos, right? Well, when you examine it closely, it’s these little expenses that ruin your budget and take you off track. To allude to the toothache thing from the previous tip, when these small expenses pile up, that’s when you’ll realize that they’re actually hurting you exponentially. Why pay for a PHP 100 fast food lunch when you have leftovers from last night that you can eat at the pantry? Why buy the exact same shirt in a different color just because there’s an enticing three for the price of two deal? Do you really need these things? If you start asking yourself such questions, then you probably already know the answer – you don’t need them. It takes time and practice to develop the discipline for resisting these temptations, but when you realize what awaits you in the future, you’re probably going to take a pause and control yourself.
Choose the right tools
Saving money is great, but growing it would be loads better. The thing is, while you try to achieve your financial goals, your money shouldn’t be sitting in a bank for years with little interest. Why not put your savings to work by investing them somewhere? You might be looking at short-term goals now, like keeping a savings account, but at some point, you’ll need to move up and set longer-term goals like stocks, mutual funds, and alternative investment solutions like lending on Blend PH’s P2P marketplace. You don’t have to pick just one way of growing your money. You should carefully examine your options and balance them out to help you achieve your goals at the fastest possible time and with the highest returns.
Wait for your savings to grow
Review your budget and savings from time to time. Check your progress every month or every two months. Are you getting anywhere near your goals? Are you sticking to the plans you’ve set for yourself? Have you chosen the right tools to grow and keep your money? Doing a thorough review of everything will help you identify choke points and fix problems while they’re small.
With Blend, you can be inches closer to realizing your financial goals. Hopefully, these tips would inspire you to save up and think long term about your money moves. Check out our Investor page at https://blend.ph/investor to see your options if you’re interested about growing your money through our growing marketplace.