As the new year commences, it is important to start off with a plan for a healthy financially rich girl new year. For some, this may mean creating a budget, an accurate estimate of your expenses and income. Budgets are a great way to get a snapshot view of where your money is going and according to budgeting coach Jada Elam, founder of Green Line Planner, it can be a great tool to manage the way every single dollar of yours is used.
Everyone should be budgeting, no matter how much money you make, says Elam. It allows you to make planning for the future a bit easier.
“You want to build wealth so that you’re able to have it [money] over a longer period of time rather than an instantaneous amount in your account that’s gone the next second,” explains Elam. “So, when you start budgeting, it’s really about making sure that every dollar has a purpose.”
If you’re new to budgeting, it’s never too late to start. Here are a few tips to help you have a “rich girl” new year.
Track Your Income And Expenses
The foundation of a successful budget is knowing your lifestyle. Take a moment to write down the amount of money you make from your career and/or side gig. Next, examine and write down where your money is spent. For those whose income fluctuates, Elam recommends using a bank statement to get a month-by-month accurate view to make this process easier. You can use customizable budgeting templates to help create this list.
Maybe you’ve realized your expenses exceed your income. Many bills rarely change, but other expenses may be causing you to spend too much. Budgets are supposed to be flexible, so adjustments may look different for everyone. When making these adjustments, prioritize your bills first, savings, and then leisure. Consider deleting a monthly subscription you don’t use or adjusting the amount of money spent on takeout.
In case an extra expense comes up, Elam also suggests adding a miscellaneous tab. You can use this extra money to prevent overspending for the month.
Create Separate Bank Accounts
Budgeting doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy life. In fact, when you budget you’re able to set aside money for the things you want! Instead of being tempted to overspend, Elam recommends separating your money into different bank accounts. She suggests having a designated account for leisure, savings, and bills. This eliminates the anxiety of spending your money. You can activate direct deposit and have a specific amount of money go into each account.
Saving money may mean getting creative with the way you shop. A great way to start is to buy items secondhand. Thrifting for clothing and furniture can be redesigned or re-upholstered to fit what you like. These items are usually less expensive than if they were to be bought brand new. You can also visit your local food pantry or try cooking your favorite restaurant meal at home.
Raise Your Income
In order for your budget to match your lifestyle, you may need to add a few extra coins. Social media has made it easier for anyone to make money online. Creating passive income, like e-books or travel guides for your favorite city, is a great way to add income to your monthly budget.
Budgeting doesn’t have to be hard. Creating healthy boundaries with how you spend and save your money can set you up for the rich girl new year you want.