Budgeting 101

Alright, there are only 7 Mondays left before 2018 which means that there is not much time left to plan for a better and more prosperous financial year ahead! This brings me to this month’s topic on budgeting! So let’s get down to it.

If you’re much like anyone you know, you’re familiar with our good old friend called procrastination. Nobody likes to admit that they procrastinate, yet every year we promise ourselves that we’ll save more, gym more and spend more time doing the things we love. So, Instead of reaching mid-2018 and saying that hopefully, 2019 will be your year, let’s do what we can; now; to make it YOUR year! Yes, NOW!

Budgeting is simple and if you can stick to your plan this time next year your December could be somewhere wonderful without any financial worries!

What is a budget you might ask? Yes, we’ve all heard the word but what is it really? Well, a budget is a set-out plan of how much expenses you have, what they are for and how much income you have and how to allocate your income based on your living costs. Many people live month to month and cannot understand why they never seem to get ahead. Yes, you do deserve to have fun but that doesn’t mean you can spend money that you don’t have in order to do so. Rather include entertainment into your budget so that you know how much fun you are entitled to.

To start with a budget here is a list of basic items you need to consider:

  • Rent or mortgage – If you own your home then there are additional costs such as rates and taxes and even possible levies.
  • Utilities (Electricity & Water)
  • Car & Fuel – This one is a little more than just your monthly installment as you also need to take into account maintenance on your vehicle. When was your car last serviced? When will you need to purchase new tyres again?
  • Medical Aid or Hospital Plan
  • Insurance (Car, Home & Personal)
  • Food & Household Groceries – This is not inclusive of your eating out costs.
  • Cellphone & Internet
  • Entertainment
  • Retirement
  • Savings

The most important thing about creating your budget is, to be honest about your finances. If you aren’t 100% factual about how much your expenses are, you will never be able to get ahead in your financial future. Also, see your budget planning as aspirational, with knowing your finances you can be real with yourself about seeking out that promotion or finding a second job! Your future starts today, don’t wait for someone else to make your dreams their reality!

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