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Budgeting Tips From Beginner to Pro: Practical Tips for Financial Success
Ever felt overwhelmed by the endless choices and decisions in the when you want to start budgeting? Wondering where to start or how to level up your budgeting game? Well, you’re in the right place! Today, we’re breaking down budgeting into three phases that will take you from a beginner to a pro.
166 | Budgeting Hacks: Level Up from Beginner to Pro (Budgeting Tips, Steps & Automation) – Financial Coaching for Women: How To Budget, Manage Money, Pay Off Debt, Save Money, Paycheck Plans
Phase 1: Getting Started – Budgeting As A Beginner
When you’re just getting started, you just have to not be afraid to get a budget on paper. It can feel paralyzing to start but you should just be okay with being a beginner! You can have as many first drafts as it takes! Get yourself a basic budget and then give yourself permission to edit it for a few months until you can perfect it!
You want to separate your bills account from any spending or savings accounts.
- Use our free one page printable budget template to get started. For a basic budget you need:
- Next, you want to separate your bills account from any spending or savings. Yes, this means opening up separate accounts.
- In the beginning stage, minimize your spending as much as possible. Spending budget items are things like restaurants, groceries, pocket money, etc. You want to minimize this as much as you’re willing in order to get started.
- Use cash in as many spending categories as you’re willing. It will help you get in the right money mindset and it’ll save you money.
- In this phase, you’re most likely not saving for a lot of things in the future. While we do teach you to do that, in the beginning you just want to get good at budgeting for the basics and for what’s going on right now.
- In this phase, you’ll throw anything “leftover” onto debt.
- Once you’ve gotten all of this down pat, you can move on to the next phase.
Phase 2: Navigating the Budget – Finding Your Groove
Now that you’ve got your budget in place, let’s talk about fine-tuning your financial ship. It’s time to track your spending, cut back on non-essentials, and prepare for the unexpected. Here’s what to expect in this phase:
You’ll also start to get used to having money…in your pocket, in your bills account, in your savings accounts.
- Perfect the Paycheck Plan. This means you’ll do the same thing EVERY payday based on your budget.
- This means the same amount of money for groceries, gas, spending and savings are being allotted each paycheck. Automatically.
- As part of this process, you’ll start to set up the most important savings buckets accounts and automate your savings.
- You can continue to monitor your spending & bills and identify areas where you can cut back. Sometimes you might not want to cut everything in the beginning. However, as you make progress, gain traction and see results you might find yourself more willing to cut back.
- You’ll continue to pay off debt.
- You’ll identify “unexpected” expenses better and learn to look forward more.
- You’ll also start to get used to having money…in your pocket, in your bills account, in your savings accounts. Money is everywhere!
- You’ll also become a pro at not using credit cards. You’ll be paying them off and cutting them up.
Phase 3: Leveling Up Your Money Game – Pro Status
Congratulations! You’ve reached pro status in the world of budgeting. Now it’s time to reap the rewards of your hard work. From fully funded emergency funds to digital envelopes, you’re in control of your finances like never before.
You don’t have to borrow money for things because you can borrow money from yourself in the event of an emergency.
- Now you can have all the savings buckets we talk about on our podcast!
- You will also have a fully funded emergency fund (6 months of expenses). This is cool because you get to become your own bank. You don’t have to borrow money for things because you can borrow money from yourself in the event of an emergency (like the ac going out in July in Florida! –true story)
- All of your income, bills, spending and savings are automated in your bank and you’re using digital envelopes perhaps more than cash envelopes.
- This is when you increase the amount you’re contributing to retirement and investments.
- This is when you start thinking about your Net Worth, helping your kiddos out for big things like college / weddings AND leaving a legacy.
- You can be more generous with your money including charities, acts of kindness, church and even those in need .
- Explore generous giving and long-term financial goals.
Budgeting isn’t just about numbers; it’s about mastering your money and achieving your dreams. Whether you’re just starting or reaching pro status, remember that every step counts. Keep building your financial future with intention, and soon you’ll be helping others on their journey too. Keep up the great work! 💪💰