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On Making a Budget… Don’t Panic

When it comes to creating your budget, it may be tempting to say, “let’s not and say we did.”  Nobody likes a liar.

Picture1 When you finally sit down and figure out you net worth, aka your place in the financial universe, the results may cause what is known in medical fields as a “freak out.”  The best way to deal with this condition is to avoid your finances at all costs; no, not really, but many people do react this way. 

I understand that feeling of panic that washes over you.  Where do I start?  Can I ever pay off all that debt?  How can I ever save enough money for the retirement I’ve always dreamed of?  Remember those days at school when you realized that big test would have been a lot easier had you just studied over the semester rather than just that last week?  This is kind of like that. 

So, let’s talk about financial goals; otherwise, why do you even care about your finances?  Here are a few of ours:

1.  Pay off unnecessary debt.

2.  Save sufficiently to have the option of an early retirement.

3.  Save enough for our future children’s college funds. 

4.  Buy a house.

5.  Buy an airplane (that’s Husband talking).

Notice that all of these goals require cash flow.  The greater the income and the fewer expenses we have, the faster we can reach these goals.  Check out The 10 Best Money Moves You Can Make at Free Money Finance for some great insight on this whole matter. 

Now, before you start renting out advertising space on the kiddos for a little extra cash, you might consider cutting costs.  Which costs you ask; well, that’s why you need a budget mon ami.  Again, you may feel daunted by the task of looking at all your expenses each month.  It’s like cleaning the bathroom, you know it’s yours, but that doesn’t make it any easier. I don’t care if it grosses you out, you have to do it. 

Here are some of my favorites as far as budgeting tools go:

Basic Spreadsheets from ChristianPF.com

Mint.com – I really like this website and it’s free.  It might make some people squeamish though, because you have to give them your bank information and it’s online.

Quicken – I just got the Premier version for $60 on Amazon and am loving it.  

Share your budgeting ideas.  I’m surprised I even have to ask.

Might I Recommend:

The Money Monkey

Article publié pour la première fois le 17/06/2010

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