March 05, 2019 Meet the budget for budget haters!
Budgeting sucks. I get it.
Unless you’re someone who takes great pride in creating intricate Excel spreadsheets that break down every aspect of your weekly spending in forensic detail, budgeting can be a pain in the you know where.
If you can’t be bothered, like to keep your head in the sand with your finances while fearing the worst, or shy away from getting ‘bogged down in admin’, I’ve got a suggestion for you: make it super, super simple.
First, I’ll preface that by saying that a super-simple budget planner isn’t going to be the proverbial silver bullet to solving all your financial woes. What it will do is highlight where you’re potentially falling down with your spending and be the first step to getting on the path to financial independence.
Have 20 minutes up your sleeve? Here’s what I want you to do…
First, let’s break your budget template down into four simple categories:
Bills and living
All those regular costs you can’t change
Any regular contributions you make
For holidays, your emergency fund and the like
Your ‘me fund’
For guilt-free spending on entertainment, eating out, etc.
Next. I want you to grab last month’s bank statement, as well as a piece of paper and a pen, and take a seat. Spend the next 15-20 minutes categorising each transaction into each category. Don’t agonise too much – the important thing is to not overthink it all. It’s more a case of whichever category fits best.
How’d you go? Okay, cool. Now I want you to add the total for each category up.
Now for your ideal spread across each category…
Bills and living – 50-60%
Investments – 10%
Savings – 5-10%
Your me fund – 20-35%
Just bear in mind that we’re only focusing on one month’s worth of spending here. This whole exercise obviously doesn’t take into account larger expenses that typically occur over the course of the year such as council rates or car rego, for example.
On a very rudimentary level, you know now where your money’s going. If everything’s in range, great – high five! If it’s a bit out of whack, then, Houston, we have a problem. Not to worry, though, at least you know where to start. If there’s room for improvement, I’d suggest taking our 10% Saving Challenge. It’s relatively painless – the whole idea is to learn how to budget and spend less without impacting on your lifestyle too much.
Beyond that, if you need a soundboard or simply needs some pointers, let’s get together for a chat, free of charge.
Disclaimer: all information contained within this article is of a general nature. It does not take into consideration your personal financial circumstances. Please consult a professional financial adviser (just like us 🙂 ) when making a financial decision.