Create a budget!
The first step in creating a budget is finding an effective tool for budgeting that is easy to use.
The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada has created an online budget planner that can help you create a customized budget in three easy steps. You can even save your work online and come back to it. The tool will give you tips and suggestions that can help you to figure out your next steps. It can also create charts to help you see where your money goes. If you want, you also have the option to compare your budget with other Canadians like you.
Visit the Government of Canada website to learn more about their budget planner and create your own budget.
I Have A Budget – Now what?
First of all, congratulations for making it this far in our budgeting series! You have already worked through lots of tough stuff along the way and should pat yourself on the back for your hard work! I am proud of you for sticking with it even when it was hard. You are on the right track.
You might be wondering – what now? Creating a budget isn’t the last step - now we must maintain our budget (which may be the hardest work yet!)
Here are three tips to help you maintain your budget:
- Stay organized – staying organized is a key to success. For example, you may wish to print off a copy of your budget to keep in binder so you can review it (and tweak it) as necessary or as your financial situation changes. Without putting a system in place to organize your work, your budget could soon become unmanageable.
- Track your spending and set limits – knowing where your money is going and setting limits on spending is a positive thing to do when budgeting. You may wish to start a notebook to track your daily spending or keep track of your limit-setting.
- Don’t give up – while you may experience setbacks along the way, it is important not to give up on your plan. Maintaining a budget gets easier the more you do it AND the more you do it, the more likely you are to be successful!
Now that you understand where your money is going, the difference between “needs” and “wants”, and the role of budgeting to set limits in gambling entertainment, you are finally ready to start a budget! If you are still thinking about these topics, please review the following blogs in this series before you create a budget: