Monday, July 30, 2012

Monthly Budget Planning in 6 Easy Steps - Step 4

The FOURTH step is to have a plan that will help you attain your goals.

Find a program that works for you.  There are so many forms on the internet, books written containing forms, computer programs, and Apps that you will need to know yourself and what will work best.
  • Gather as much information as possible this first month.
    • Paychecks
    • Bank Statement
    • Credit Care Statements
    • Car Loan
    • Other Loans
    • Child Care
    • Insurance Statements (Mortgage/Rent, Life, Health, Car)
    • Cable Bill
    • Phone Bill
    • Membership Dues (Fitness Club, Golf Club, Movie)
    • Subscriptions to Newspapers and Magazines
    • Guesstimate how much you spend on groceries, eating out, entertainment, doctor appointments, shopping, hair, nails, massage, gas, etc.
  • Add more information next month with actual receipts.  (Try the June 2012 Money Management Challenge)
    • Groceries
    • Meals out
    • Entertainment
    • Shopping
    • Hair, Nails, Massage
    • Gas
Now you can really sit down and figure how much money you have coming in each month and exactly where your money is going.  Revisit this process for a couple months and start looking at each item to see if it's still important or how it can cost you a little less.

No one, at least I don't know of any cases, where people love punitive measures and actually stick to a rigid plan to see the fruits of their labor.  Anything can be tolerated for a short period of time but we're looking much further out so we need to find what will work best.

Good luck!  You can do it!!!

P.S., Please seek a financial adviser for in-depth analysis of your particular situation.  We are not financial advisers but have been in similar situations and want to pass along our experiences.

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