Personal Finance Budgeting--Getting to a Surplus

Learning about personal finance budgeting can help you in a number of different ways. Learning how to budget and actually stick with it can put you in a surplus position. Here are a few tips for personal finance budgeting.

Importance of Surplus

When working with a personal budget, it is important to shoot for a surplus of funds. Most people live from paycheck to paycheck. Therefore, when something happens where they need more money, they often run into trouble. Having a surplus makes it possible to live comfortably without worrying about any extenuating circumstances. Everyone should strive to start an emergency fund so that they will always have money when they need it. Most experts recommend that everyone has at least three months worth of expenses in a savings account. This way, even if you lose your job you will still be able to pay the bills in the meantime.

Cutting Back

If your objective is to gain a surplus of funds, one of the best things you can do is cut back on unnecessary expenses. Almost everyone spends money on things that we do not need. In order to save money quickly, it is best if we can do without certain things in the meantime. Things like paying $5 for latte are not wise if we are trying to save money. You could cut back on your television bill, your Internet speed, or any other number of things to save money.

Spending Limits

Another important step in reaching a surplus level of funds is to set spending limits in each category of your life. Break down your expenses into a number of different categories. Create categories such as entertainment, restaurants, groceries, utilities, and anything else that you spend your money on. Look back over several months worth of financial statements. This will help you determine how much you need to spend in each category on a monthly basis. If it helps, you can even break it down into a weekly spending limit. The important thing is the set a limit for spending in each category and then you stick to it.

For example, if you determine that you are going to spend $50 a week going to restaurants, then you should not spend more than that figure. Once you reach $50, you cannot go to another restaurant until the following week. This method requires some discipline, but it will make a big difference in the long run.

Saving Money

Once you start cutting back, and setting spending limits for yourself, you now need to start saving money. In order to do this, you should open a savings account with the specific objective of coming up with a surplus of funds. Once the account is open, you need to devote a certain amount of money each month toward the account. Then, set up an automatic transfer from your checking account to this new savings account. Before long, you will have a surplus of money in your savings account and your budget under control.

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