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Budgeting

Living on a Budget

Today we have a guest post that can help our UK readers estimate how living on a budget can help them get ahead financially. Enjoy! In 2015, the minimum monthly household expenses for a UK region was an appalling £427.50; with the largest sum being £616.30 in Greater London. Clearly our expenses are getting the better of us, so it’s about time we reined in the unnecessary spending and started setting weekly, monthly and yearly limits. However, if you’re unsure on how to approach your cost cutting, read this simple guide on how to live well whilst saving well. Planning Your first task towards a more cost effective life is to create a budget plan that clearly outlines your current overheads; this will make figuring out A) how much you are spending and B) what’s costing you the most much easier. Do not start budgeting unless you have answered this essential criteria – it’s not something than can be done overnight as you’re essentially changing the lifestyle you’ve become accustomed to. You could produce this in an Excel spreadsheet for better organization. Goals You’ve gathered all the relevant information – great, now you can initiate the next phase, setting goals. ...

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4 Expensive Habits I’ve Given Up to Save Money

expensive habits

Shortly after I finished college and entered the “real world,” I started a good job in my hometown which required a more professional wardrobe. I also bought my first house and furniture only months after graduation due to a rental housing shortage in the town where I live. I was only 21, and all of a sudden I had debt – a lot of debt. It didn’t take too many sleepless nights for me to realize I needed a budget. This is when I found personal finance blogs. During the process of creating my first budget just a couple of months later, I eliminated some habits that were costing me money but weren’t really necessary. Although I still have a pretty nice lifestyle, I gave up some expensive habits so I could pay off debt and save money. Here are 4 expensive habits I gave up to save money. I hope it will inspire you to look for similar ways to cut unnecessary spending from your own budget. 1 Clothes Shopping When I was a poor college student I couldn’t really afford to go clothes shopping unless it was an absolute necessity. But that didn’t always stop me. I did ...

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What to do if You Overspend Your Budget

overspend your budget

When April started off, I had a good feeling about it. You see, March was expensive for me. I had a lot of extra business expenses, like investing in a new Macbook Pro, and expanding my team so I don’t have to work as much. But I also increased my income significantly. After that expensive month, my plan was to buckle down in April and pay off one of my credit cards in full by the end of the month, but now I’m not so sure that it’ll happen because I’ve definitely overspent my budget this month. Going over budget is something that happens to all of us from time to time. While going over budget isn’t good, at least you are looking for solutions to get back on track. Here are some things I’m doing now that I know I’m already over budget this month, and they are strategies you can use too if and when you overspend your budget. Evaluate Your Current Budget Take a deep breath and remain calm. Look at your budget to figure out exactly which categories you overspent in and why. For example, did you over spend on your entertainment budget? Maybe you are too ...

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Living Large on a Budget: 4 Ways to Indulge Without Going Broke

We’ve all felt a budget crunch. When life throws you a curveball, it’s sometimes necessary to look at options to cut costs. There’s no need to worry, though. With some smart budgeting and a good knowledge of what is happening in your community, you can cut costs on your hobbies. Here are some suggestions to keep you started. Using the Public Library Libraries may not seem cool in the public’s imagination, but for fans of media, a library card is a passport to huge savings on entertainment. In addition to a lot of books by the latest authors, most modern libraries carry a range of DVD and CD products for your watching and listening enjoyment. Some libraries even have video games, for the hardcore gamer on a budget. And the best part is that as long as you don’t miss your due dates, checking out items from the library is free. Visit yours today and make the most of your tax dollars. Grow Plants for Food Image via Flickr by Jevgenijs Slihto Perhaps you’re more the outdoor type. If your idea of a great afternoon is crawling in the dirt, planting seeds, and pulling weeds, you should look into what you plant, with an ...

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Win a Trip to Hawaii From Personal Capital

win a free trip

To celebrate Valentine’s Day, Personal Capital is giving away a trip to Hawaii for new users! It’s really simple to enter. Sign up for a free Personal Capital Account Link your financial accounts. That’s all. The contest runs until February 14th, and the odds of winning obviously depend on how many people sign up. You can read the official rules here, but basically the winner gets two $1,000 gift cards for airfare on Hawaiian Airlines and a $1,000 gift card to Airbnb. This could fully fund a trip or not, depending on where you live, when you want to travel, and how picky you are about accommodations. Regardless, the odds for winning are much better than buying a lottery ticket. If you’ve been on the fence about signing up, now is the time. Why Sign up for Personal Capital? Tracking your finances is perfectly doable without using an automated program, but it’s much more time consuming. I like Personal Capital for a number of reasons. Their dashboard is easy to read and understand. It gives you an honest picture of spending, earning, and net worth. They have an awesome retirement calculator. You get weekly emails that let you know if ...

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