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13 April 2020

How To Budget

Every time I hear the word 'budget' , I think of the Chancellor standing outside 10 Downing Street with that red suitcase and holding it aloft for the tens of paparazzi there waiting to snap a quick photo.



Yes, budgeting. It's not easy. Whatever income you have coming in, it's all about prioritising, especially if you don't live in your own place. Whether you're employed, unemployed or self employed, having a budget is so important.





It's always better to be in a position to be able to budget. I've been to that place a long time ago where I literally had nothing. I've never been one to ask for money, back then I said that if I didn't have it, I didn't have it. I wouldn't splurge on random shit I didn't need. Purely because I couldn't have that luxury.



When it comes to payday, the temptation to spend some of your hard earned money on that Topshop jacket or Adidas trainers is unreal. If you've got the money, then why not spend it, right? Hmm, think carefully. Will you regret that impulse buy near the end of the month, that point when you stare at your bank account with squinted eyes and hope the numbers will change? At the end of the day, it all comes down to how you manage your money.



In the last 18 months or so, I've become a lot better and more financially aware with my money. I don't spend like bat shit crazy on the latest trends anymore. I'd rather spend my money on making memories than buying the latest Zara jacket everyone seems to be buying.





Now, I don't want to sound like a boring old fart saying "You need to save my dear" or "You need to open a savings account in a building society" (something my Dad made me do when I was SIX YEARS OLD) one memory that still haunts me to this day? My Dad practically frogmarching me to the building society to make me put my birthday money into my savings account. I left there almost crying. No new Polly Pocket set to add to my ever-growing collection.



Ok, back to the present day, here's my budgeting tips and advice that may help if you're worried about your finances -



 1) KEEP TRACK OF YOUR MONTHLY FINANCES 
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This is something I do religiously. I have a book which I write down my monthly finances. As my wages differ each month as I don't work the same amount of hours each week, I write down my wages down one side of the page. The other side of the page I write down my outgoings. It definitely assists me in keeping track of my money. One thing I like to do is to do a 'half way through the month' check and see how much money I have spent and how much I have left. Usually I end up having to be extra careful by this point.




2) LIST YOUR MONTHLY DIRECT DEBITS / BILLS 
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Every person's finances are different. Some have more bills than others. Some have more direct debits than others. I know my direct debits and bills that go out each month like the back of my hand. I can even tell what day of the month it gets taken out of my bank account. Also be careful of the ones that get paid annually rather than monthly. It could come as a nasty surprise when you check your bank balance and you can't figure out why £30.85 has disappeared. Write down somewhere when annual amounts are meant to go out. Add up all direct debits and bills then you will know how much you will have spare for the upcoming month.





3) CHECK YOUR BANK BALANCE WEEKLY 
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I like to do this to keep my mind at ease. A few years ago, somebody stole my card details and did a Supermarket Sweep type shop in Morrisons in Essex on numerous occasions. Thankfully, I got all of my money back but the heart attack I almost had when I had realised what had happened was REAL. I'll never forget being in absolute bits on the phone to my bank when it happened. Thankfully the incident hasn't reoccurred. Checking my bank balance weekly means I can see all of my outgoings and incomings.



4) KEEP RECEIPTS 
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Obviously if you're self employed, you DEFO need to be doing this. But even though I work part time, I still keep the receipts from my visits to the petrol pump or when I visit Boots to buy some shampoo. I keep them until I know that the money has gone out of my bank account. I don't know how I got into this habit, it's just something I do. But it's a great way to keep track of your weekly spending.




5) SAVE SAVE SAVE! 
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I don't care if you only £1.09 in your account at the end of the month, it's still something! Ok, maybe it would be better to put in a bit more than that. I have actually grown to love saving my money. Even though I had that nightmare visit to the building society when I was six, maybe Dad did teach me a valuable lesson that day. I have two savings accounts, one for general savings and my Help To Buy ISA. I split whatever money I have left at the end of the month into each account and it's surprising how much it's gone up in the last year or so! When saving, think of the house you want to put a deposit on, those pair of trainers you've been dying for or that holiday you want in the Summer. It'll be worth it my loves.





6) TREAT YOURSELF!
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If you know you are going to be ok money wise, do treat yourself to a little summin. Obviously don't go on a massive splurge and land yourself in debt, but order a cheeky ASOS order once in a while. A treat once in a while never hurt no one.




7) STICK TO IT! 
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Please, on my begging knees (ouch, I just lent on a small stone on the carpet) please stick to your budget! You've invested so much time and effort into your budget, don't bloody blow it. This doesn't mean I don't want you to limit your lifestyle or having fun with your friends, but just don't regret that splurge you made in River Island.



What are your tips/advice on budgeting?

44 comments:

  1. some great tips Lucy! Saving really has been a lifesaver and while it can be hard, it's definitely more of a long term solution but really worth it :-)
    Sarah x

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    1. Thank you Sarah! Saving can be hard but like you said, it's great in the long term! x

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  2. these are great tips. i seriously need to sort out my budget. i'll give these tips a go for sure!
    ellie x // elliekblog.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thank you Ellie, I hope you can get things sorted! x

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  3. These are some great tips. I live by still occasionally treating yourself, as it's so hard to save constantly. You have to find that balance. I also rely on a lot of apps like Monzo and Chip to help me save! x

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    1. Monzo and Chip are great apps to help you save! x

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  4. I always check my bank balance and although I'm good at saving as I don't tend to buy myself much, I definitely need to start budgeting more because I think I could save myself quite a bit of money if I did it properly! x

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    1. This is a great chance to figure out your finances with everything going on right now Jenny! x

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  5. thank you so much for these tips. Constant saving is hard as I always say to myself “I have the money, why not spend it” even on things I don’t need. Your tips are so helpful

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    1. You're very welcome! I used to have the same attitude towards money too, maybe as I've gotten older, my attitude has improved and I don't go on a mad spending spree! x

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  6. These are great suggestions, thanks for sharing Lucy! At the moment, I record my income and outgoings in my bullet journal and it really helps me be more careful with money and think twice about spending! Checking our account regularly is such good advice, that must have been so worrying when someone stole your card and went shopping! Thanks for sharing, really helpful post <3 xx

    Bexa | www.hellobexa.com

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    1. Thank you Bexa! It really helps writing down your income and outgoings doesn't it?! It really helps me not overspend each month! It was quite scary but so glad that I got all of my money back! xx

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  7. These are such good suggestions! i've struggled with budgeting my whole life cause ive been in a lucky position where i took a higher education course which i had maintance allowance for so i had quite a lot of money for the academic year where i was living at home so in that sense i was lucky but i spent the whole load of that on shit i dont have to show for it. I then got a full-time job on a good salary and again i wasnt used to have money that i'd just spend it all and like you said i dont like asking for money but because stuck in my overdraft every single payday i had to ask for help and now im being so good at budgeting! this post is 100% gonna help someone x

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    1. Thank you Ellie! Learning how to handle money is something we have all had to learn lovely and you sound like me when I got my first job, I ended up spending my money on random shit I didn't need! I hope this post does help someone too! x

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  8. I was the same growing up! My dad actually had a post office account where my parents put money in just for emergency purposes! I like to think I'm pretty good at budgeting money especially since I have to make money last after all my bills come out! If I can make it to any UK hotel for a break this year, my budgeting will be a success! xD

    Daisy xoxo | TheDeeWhoLived

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    1. Let's hope you make it to a UK hotel for a break this year Daisy! Are you planning on going to any part of the UK in particular? x

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  9. These are some great tips - I find checking my bank balance regularly really helpful too!

    Shelley x

    www.onlyshelley.com

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    1. It really helps me be in control of my money too Shelley! x

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  10. These are some great tips! Thanks for sharing

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  11. My biggest issue currently is eating out. I have managed to stop buying clothes, shoes, purses and other things I don't need right now. However, I spend a ridiculous amount on food and it's like I can't help myself lol. It really adds up though so I need to make it a treat maybe once a week or every other week. If I didn't wait until I was practically starving to decide maybe I should eat it wouldn't be so tempting.

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    1. Well, food is just amazing so I don't blame you there! I've stopped buying the takeaways so much these days as it just adds up and takes a big chunk out my account every month!

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  12. Great tips! I mostly splurge a lot on gadgets and unecessary stuff but I've come to realize I gotta save money for rainy days too. It's not my birthday everyday lol.

    Thanks for sharing!

    xoxo
    Ann | www.annchoi.me

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    1. Thank you Ann! Haha that's one way of looking at it, it's not our birthday's everyday! x

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  13. I actually check my bank daily so I know exactly how much money I have left! If I don't check I can get a bit too card happy. These are some really great tips x

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    1. That's a good idea Kayleigh! I'd get too card happy if I didn't check my bank account on a regular basis! x

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  14. I was very surprised to to check my credit card account to see that in March I have only spent 30€! Still no idea how it was possible but I am trying to save something even this month! we shall see!

    Cate ☾ 35mm in Style | Photography + Blogging

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    1. Aww that must have been a nice surprise Cate!

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  15. Keeping track of finances and having a little something to treat myself with definitely helps me!

    Katy | www.therawrdrobe.com

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    1. We're definitely allowed to treat ourselves once in a while! x

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  16. Great tips Lucy! I think checking your bank balance weekly is a really good one - especially after you mentioned someone stealing your card!! x

    https://www.femaleoriginal.com

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    1. Yeah it really gives me peace of mind when I check my account! x

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  17. These are great tips! I've always been careful with my money, not totally frugal but other than one or two treat yo'self moments, never frivolous. I always like to know I have that cushion there if I ever need it. Probably something this virus is going to make me appreciative of in the not too distant future. I totally agree that you should know what's due to come out and when and generally be aware of your income vs expenditure even if it's not down to the penny. Loved the story about your dad although I'm sure I'd have been devastated at the time if it had happened to me x

    Sophie
    www.glowsteady.co.uk

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    1. It's good that you are careful with your money Sophie, it's not that you're frugal, it's just you're mindful of your expenditure! Oh I know, it was a devastating and mentally scarring moment in my life! x

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  18. Haha thanks for this post. I've been online shopping so much this quarantine season, so you're right... I need to stick to it! Lately I don't even list the stuff I spend on my monthly budget excel. You've inspired me to actually keep track again, so thanks xx

    -M
    MEGHAN

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  19. Thank you for a fab post once again! It's such an important topic so I'm glad you covered it :)

    Stay wonderful!

    Louna x

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  20. Great tips! Budgeting is not easy but is very rewarding to treat ourselves or on rainy days.

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  21. Great tips! I grew up watching my Mum sit down at the table with her big Natwest folder every week so I was taught to keep track of your finances from an early age! I've found setting up a standing order for savings works best for me - I used to put whatever was left at the end of the month into a savings account, but I'd always end up treating myself and having nothing left over. Instead I worked out my budget for the month and what I could afford to pay as well as having a bit left over for going out/extra bits etc and set a standing order for every payday. I've been doing it for well over a year now and it really works wonders, plus where it comes out on payday as well, I don't particularly miss it! xx

    Amy | sassycatlady.com

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  22. Love this post, I so agree you need to check your bank account every week at a minimum to know what's going on. And consistency is so key! Great post thanks for sharing.

    www.dolledupbyj.com

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    1. It keeps me up to date and gives me peace of mind! x

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