Getting My finances Back on Track

This is going to be our first financial talk of the year. Including one very special lesson from mother dearest. Today’s post really is to talk about my financial plan for the year and getting myself back on track.

Credit Cards

If you haven’t read it already my first post on finance was talking about credit cards (click the link to read it). I discussed whether or not it was worth having them; My opinion on it has not necessarily changed. However, this platform is all about being transparent I feel safe enough to say that I didn’t completely follow my own advice on safely using your credit card. Although there were many underlying factors which led me to use my credit card a lot more than I would have liked, it did come in handy. Again, gentle reminder credit cards are not your source of income. You will have to pay it back so bear that in mind.

Getting Back On Track

For this year, it is about getting my finances back on track and still being able to live a little. Here are a few steps I have set out for me.

  • Say NO! This can be hard for me sometimes (FOMO). But it’s ok to not be at everything and everywhere because it adds up eventually. When it comes to being invited to places, I aim to critically analyse, is this a necessary spend? Does it fit into my spending budget for the month?
  • Strict Budget: Being a lover of planning and planners, I have a Budget planner that I got from Wilko for only £3.50. It helps me to keep a visual outlook on my spending. At the end of the month, I examine my spending. This will enable me to pick up trends where I can save money. Am I spending too much on coffee, can I cut back on fuel by utilising other forms of transport? etc.
  • The Snowball effect which works in the following;
    • 1. arrange your debts from smallest to largest.
      2. only pay minimum payments on all others except the smallest one, which you will make effort to make the most payment until it is cleared.
      3. once that has cleared, do the same with the next smaller one and repeat until you have paid each debt in full.
  • Plan well in advance: Of course, I want to save and clear debts but I also want to travel. To do this, I have to make sure that I plan well in advance. This allows me to shop around and find the most efficient deals (not cheapest, as it isn’t always the best). Also the earlier you pay for trips the cheaper it usually is.
Budget Planner from Wilko

NO MORE

This is really important for me and it is one thing that I really wish I hadn’t neglected. It is simple, do not live within your means, leave below them. If you are wondering what the title has got to do with this post, this is the strategy my mother thought me. I was able to save a lot when I utilised it. In some ways, it works like the snowball effect but with savings; here’s how. Imagine you receive a monthly payment of £1200. After all your expenses, as well as your savings, is cleared you have £500 left over to spend for the month. Instead of spending all of the £500, you will limit yourself only to £300, leaving an excess of £200. This means that the next month, instead of having £1200 to start with you now have £1400. Instead of having £500 left over to spend, you now have £700; Should you limit yourself again to the £300 spend, you have an excess of £400, by the sixth-month you will have made £1200, plus your £500 spending money for that month. By now you are no longer dependent on your monthly paychecks because you are living of the previous ones, which allows your balances to build. Hopefully, this made sense because when you get it, its life-changing I’m kicking myself now realising how I lost track of how it important it is.

Sharing Knowledge

I had every intention of making this a short post, however it was important for me to not just tell you I wanted to get back on my finances without explaining how to get there as some of you may be on the same journey. I hope that you find these point useful and if you are able to utilise them or have alternative ways please do share them in the comments. Sharing knowledge and experiences is really is at the core of this platform, so we can all grow together.

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