With the recent Coronavirus pandemic, many families found themselves struggling to save and forced to rewrite their monthly family budget.
Being well prepared is the key to overcoming any difficult situation and planning your spending on a monthly basis is a good way to start. Here are some important tips to help you budget your monthly family expenses for difficult times.
Monthly family budget: choose the right format
First and foremost, you need to choose where you wish to create your monthly budget. When starting out with budgeting, most people tend to use a notebook and pen or their notes on their phone. Once you start getting comfortable with writing down your expenses and responsibilities you start start looking into mobile apps and other software solutions.
Mobile apps are possibly the best option because they are extremely intuitive and can used on the go. An app such as Emma can help you keep track of your transactions, your balance and even help you cancel unwanted subscriptions whenever you wish. This is the easiest and most effective way to make sure that you are never spending more than you should.
Write down all your sources of income
After choosing your preferred platform to plan your budget, you need to start by writing down your income. This means all the ways through which your household is earning money. Even if only one person in the family is able to provide some sort of financial assistance, it is important to note. You need to be able to know exactly how much money goes through your household each month.
This is the easiest way to split responsibilities between the members of a family if there is no joint account between some. Someone can easily take care of the rent, certain bills or groceries and knowing how much each person brings in will make it easier.
Organize your necessary expenditures
When it comes to budgeting, you should always remember to write down your most important financial obligations first. These include your rent, your phone, water and electricity bills, and your groceries for the month and even your gas bills.
All of these all things your family cannot survive without so even if money is tight these needs should always stay a priority. As long as you are able to get these out of the way, the rest of your money can be split between less vital things your family needs.
Plan ahead for unexpected expenses
One of the issues many people don’t think about when budgeting are unexpected expenses. These can be smaller or bigger expenses but can very much hinder your plans and make you lose track of your budget. The best way to tackle this is to set aside some money for it on a monthly basis, in case of emergency.
Even if you are only able to save a little bit of money every month, this should help you in covering unexpected costs as they arise. When your family is facing a financial crisis, you will be much better prepared if you have planned this in advance. Therefore, saving some money for emergencies is one of the best tactics to follow.
Rethink about your overall spendings
When writing your budget you might come to realize that your family is spending a lot more money than necessary for simple and unnecessary things. This happens even more so to families with teenagers who are asking for their own allowance. When spending money on an allowance, you need to make sure that you are letting your children learn how to control their own spendings.
Your overall spending could also be affected by too many takeaway meals, clothes and other expenses which could otherwise be avoided. Rethinking about the purchases you have made during previous months will help you prioritize what is important during a crisis. Therefore, you will be able to only spend money on things vital for your family’s longevity.
Commit to your new budget
Last but not least, after creating your budget, it is important that you stick to it faithfully. If you are serious about making changes and saving up for emergencies you must refrain from splurging. While some people want to just enjoy the money they make, having a family should help you set different priorities.
Committing to your new budget will allow you to use your money wisely and not purchase things you don’t really need. Next time your family faces a difficult and unexpected situation, you will be able to overcome it a lot more easily.
Achieving your financial goals easily and effectively
A monthly family budget is going to prove useful when going through difficult times. Along with that, it will help you plan your finances all year round. Knowing how to make a budget that works for you is key in this situation.
Whether you prefer to use a notepad and pen or a budgeting app like Emma is up to you. As long as you find what works for you, just try to stick to your monthly budget and see how you can improve it. After a while, you will notice you can finally start saving money for the long run.
Note: This article was written by Melanie Sovann, professional writer for GrabMyEssay. She has a strong passion for helping her audience overcome any difficulties in regards to their financial obligations and she often creates guest posts on various websites for that reason. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and reading some of her favorite novels.