What better way to start the new year than with an annual budget review? Reviewing your budget is a relatively quick and simple exercise that will pay dividends throughout the year in saved time, effort, and frustration. I use YNAB (You Need a Budget) to map out my spending and saving plans and consider it a valuable and integral part of my money management system. While the process I outline below makes regular mention of the YNAB software, you can apply the same steps to whatever budgeting … [Read more...] about How to Conduct an Annual Budget Review (and Why You Should)
Budgeting & Planning
YNAB's 3 Core Concepts In case it's not painfully obvious, there are a few reasons why making current spending decisions based on anticipated income is a really bad idea. Unprecedented levels of unemployment ring any bells? Even if you have enviable job security, basing today's plans on tomorrow's income is putting the cart before the horse. It's not a good way to make a solid plan. Employment and salary security aside, anticipated-income budgeting leaves a whole host of folks out in … [Read more...] about Why YNAB? A Detailed Breakdown of YNAB’s Unique Layered Approach to Budgeting
Listen up, fellow budgeters. As you know, I’m all about being financially prepared for the irregular expenses in life. One of the many expenses I point out when discussing irregular expenses (those that don’t happen monthly but do occur on a regular and somewhat predictable schedule) is tires. Yup, new tires for your vehicle(s). My family owns two Subarus. We love them. We’re Subaru devotees. But being a Subaru owner means being prepared to replace four tires all at the same time. Unlike … [Read more...] about New Tires – Are you ready?
It can be tempting to go overboard when creating YNAB budget categories. After all, the impetus behind a budget is usually a desire to rein in spending. Or at least figure out where all of our money is going, right? Who wouldn’t be curious to know how much is being spent each month on shampoo or pet chew toys? I encourage my clients to resist the temptation to get too granular with their categories. The time and effort required to break receipts into multiple categories can be a … [Read more...] about K.I.S.S. Your Categories
I have a little slideshow I use when I teach a class. It provides the students/audience with something to look at other than me. On the very first slide are my Four Basic Principles of Personal Finance: Spend less than you earn.Understand and identify your needs vs wants.Practice delayed gratification.Let. Money. Sit. At first glance, these rules are ridiculously basic. Simple, even. Laughably simple? Yes. But each one has multiple layers of complexity … [Read more...] about Four Principles of Finance Wellness