With prices on the rise and bills piling up, a lot of us might be left feeling like our finances are a hot mess. The mental load that comes with increased costs of living is very real, but with the right tips, is also very manageable. If you’re feeling like it’s time to get organised and take control of your money you’ve come to the right place. We’ve put together some tips on money organisation and where to start, how to make the budgeting process a fun one, and how you can work towards feeling more confident about your financial future.
Budgeting might not be the most exciting way to spend your time, but hear us out. With a little bit of effort, budgeting can become a fun and rewarding way to take control of your finances. Creating a budget will help you identify areas where you might be overspending and make adjustments to help meet your financial goals. It doesn’t have to be all about sacrifice, instead, place the focus on prioritising the things that are most important to you. Whether your priority is a new computer, a trip around Europe, or saving up for your first home, having a budget set up is the first step to reaching these goals, and will help you enjoy and feel more in control of the process. Apps like Frollo and Mint are great ways to easily track your spending, Spriggy is more family focused and is a good starting point for teaching kids financial literacy and tracking pocket money, or if you prefer to track your finances manually, excel has some good budgeting templates to get you started.
Working out your financial personality will change your budgeting experience for the better. Are you someone who likes to plan ahead and stick to a budget? You might enjoy tracking your finances and creating a detailed budget with specific categories for your expenses. Or maybe you prefer to be spontaneous with your spending, here just setting up an allowance for discretionary spending might be the best way to go. Those who prefer to analyse their spending might enjoy using a budget to identify areas where spending can be optimised, such as on groceries or transportation.
Now think about what motivates you, are you a visual person? Creating a vision board to track your progress might make this process more enjoyable for you, or, if you like a bit of a challenge, set a monthly competition between you and some friends to see who can save the most money.
Money organisation is really useful for getting your finances in order, however, the way you choose to do this is completely up to you, and it’s worth finding a method that you know will motivate you to stay on track. If there are tasks you know completely overwhelm you or you just don’t have the time for, consider outsourcing these tasks to an accountant or financial advisor. Make budgeting fun with small rewards for things like reaching your savings goals, paying off debts or sticking to your budget for a whole month. Whether this reward is a small purchase, a night out, or even just taking the time to acknowledge your achievement, celebrating your wins will help you come out of the budgeting process feeling empowered and motivated.
Here are some other tips to help you with money organisation:
- Consider alternative transportation: If you own a car, consider walking, biking, or taking public transportation when possible. Not only is it better for the environment, but it can also save you a lot of money on petrol and maintenance costs.
- Shop smarter: Look for sales, use coupons, and buy generic brands when possible. Consider shopping somewhere cheaper like Aldi, and if you know you’ll be buying something regularly, consider buying in bulk as a great way to save a bit of money.
- Avoid impulse purchases: Before you make a purchase, ask yourself if it’s something you’ve been needing or wanting for a while. Taking a few moments to be mindful before buying a purchase can help you avoid impulse buys and save money in the long run.
- Cook at home: Eating out can be expensive, so consider cooking at home more often. Creating a weekly meal plan for yourself and your family can also ensure you’re not wasting any food at the end of the week, and everything you buy at the supermarket is going to good use.
- Find ways to earn extra money: Consider taking on a side hustle, selling items you no longer need, or taking on freelance work. There are plenty of creative ways to increase your income and offset the rising cost of living.
We understand that tackling the task of managing your finances can feel even more intimidating in the face of rising costs of living, however this daunting yet necessary part of life can be made easier through steps like personalising and simplifying your financial management tools, outsourcing, and remembering to celebrate the wins. Taking these small steps towards better money organisation will help take some of the mental load off, while helping you achieve your goals and take control of your financial future. Give some of these tips a go and watch your financial wellbeing flourish!