When it comes to being financially responsible as a millennial, the stale Starbucks jokes practically write themselves. But cutting down on your daily cup of coffee can only do so much. In order to spend, save, and invest smartly, you need good budgeting habits by your side.
Besides helping you manage your expenses, budgeting also lets you plan for future goals. The practice not only lets you maintain your lifestyle but also saves you from running out of funds at the end of every month.
To help you navigate the financial challenges of the modern world, the following guide sheds light on how to budget as a millennial.
Figure Out Your Monthly Expenses
While learning how to achieve financial wellness, the first step often leads you to track your monthly expenses. This includes living expenses such as rent, groceries, and utilities, as well as debt repayment commitments such as those for car loans and student loans. When put together, it helps you figure out how much money you need to live comfortably without falling behind on your responsibilities. From there, you can start making a proper budget that takes care of all of these requirements.
Save a Portion of Your Income
If you earn a decent income, you might be able to save a portion of your paycheck without stretching yourself thin. But more often than not, this simple goal requires a lot of restraint on your end. In case you face difficulties controlling your spending, you can look into moving a portion of your funds from your personal checking account to a savings account with transaction limits. In many cases, this simple action can do wonders for your financial wellbeing.
Take Advantage of Budgeting Solutions
A lack of financial tracking is one of the many reasons why budgeting is treated as a fearsome concept. But when you use specialized budgeting solutions, managing your money becomes a walk in the park. With options such as a digital envelope budgeting app or an analog budgeting journal, you can choose between various solutions that fit your needs and lifestyle to a T. This ensures that you can build a strong financial foundation without feeling a constant burden on your shoulders.
Consider Why You Want to Save in the First Place
When you don’t have a goal in mind, saving can seem like a pointless concept. But when you know why you are saving your money, sticking to your budget becomes much easier. You can compare this to your motivation to move out on your own for the first time. Similar to how that goal drove you to build a life on your own, future objectives such as buying your first house, getting married, and becoming a parent can help you stick to your budget.
Differentiate Between Essential and Superfluous Spending
Outlining your monthly expenses is quite simple. But when you lump all types of spending in one place, you need to categorize them further. For instance, while your living expenses, such as rent, fall under essential spending, non-essential purchases, such as designer clothes, fall under luxurious expenses. By distinguishing between your needs and wants, you can create a smarter budget. If you are someone who benefits from a written thought process, you can complete this step via a personal journaling app.
Strive for Affordable Recreation
Sticking to a budget does not mean that you live a completely frugal lifestyle with no joy in sight. You can still use some of your monthly paycheck to reward yourself with affordable purchases and activities that make you happy. This can also lead you to a DIY route that happens to result in rewarding experiences. For instance, if you are into vehicle customization, you can find budget-friendly tips to upgrade your motorcycle. This maintains a blissful flavor in your life without heavily affecting your budget.
Keep Track of Your Progress
Similar to how spending without a budget can result in disastrous outcomes, making a budget without tracking your progress can result in unwanted surprises. To make sure that you can live through the month without running out of funds, do regular checks on your transactions. If you are worried about the task slipping your mind, you can use a reminder app to keep you on top of this activity. This also ensures that you can make any required changes to your budget for ideal progress.
These tips are not difficult to adopt but still allow you to navigate the tricky maze of financial stability. In addition to fulfilling your goals, this also helps you lead a rewarding life.