Personal Finances and Budgeting
Whether you’re just starting a job and looking to get a solid financial start or have had years of a steady income, chances are you’ve thought about budgeting and getting your personal finances in order. Though budgeting often has a bad reputation for taking the fun out of spending, it is really just a finance plan that considers personal income and allocates a certain amount towards expenses, savings, and debt. After those immediate needs are considered, the remaining amount can be spent or saved.
Once you have set a budget for a few months, you may want to look over your finances and see which areas need more adjusting, and what you can cut back on in order to save more. See if you had trouble sticking to your budget, or if it took into account everything you were spending on, like car repairs or unexpected medical bills. On the other hand, if you get a promotion or a raise, you may want to adjust your budgeting to be able to spend more. Either way, Marseilles Bank is here to help you stay committed to your budget, so you never feel overwhelmed or financially insecure. Here are some ways you can cut back on spending and more easily stick to your budget:
- Reduce Monthly Bills. Decreasing your monthly spending may be easier than you think. You may choose to cut back on electricity bills, buying food at discount bulk stores like Costco, choosing cheaper cell phone plans or insurance plans, or cutting cable and choosing cheaper streaming services like Netflix or Hulu. These small changes will add up to big money, and you may not even notice a huge difference in your lifestyle.
- Pay Debts. Having a lot of debt looming over you may actually be costing you even more money than you think. Because of interest rates, you may actually be accumulating more debt the longer you wait to pay it off. List all of your debts, and then make a financial plan to make a monthly payment on all of it, or even ask for a lower interest rate if possible. The sooner you pay off your debts, the sooner you can consider more financial opportunities.
- Don’t Rely on Credit Cards. For the same reason as debts, try to avoid using credit cards when you can. Credit card interests are high, and the more you use them, the more likely you are to crawl back into debt. Instead, use cash or debit cards so you’re only spending money that you have now, and consider setting up a short-term savings account for any larger purchases.
- Set Realistic Long-term and Short-term Goals. Set realistic goals for yourself that you think you can easily meet. For example, make a weekly spending budget to help keep yourself more accountable, or set a reasonable timeline for paying off your debts. You may also want to consider long-term goals, like buying a house or growing a retirement fund, and make a financial plan to begin saving for these. You may consider meeting with a financial advisor to help you make these plans.
Marseilles Bank in Marseilles, Illinois is experienced in both personal banking and business banking, and as a community bank, can offer personal customer service and support to all of its clients. Our online banking, online banking, and e-statements make it easy for you to stick to your monthly budget and keep your personal finances in check, so you’re never confused or left in the dark. That’s why we’re known as an extraordinary bank. For more information, visit our website, or see our contact page to send us a message and find a location near you.