Three Steps to Building a Budget
A new year is the perfect time to put your finances in order. A budget helps you manage the money you earn and develop a plan for the future.
Step 1: Examine Your Spending
The first step to building a budget is figuring out how you are spending your money. Review your online accounts, checkbook, monthly statements, and current bills to start your list. Start keeping a record of every dollar you spend – small purchases can add up to a lot of money that might be better spent on other things.
Step 2: Analyze Your Habits
Now that you have a clearer picture of how you are spending your income, it’s easy to see how much you’re spending in flexible categories like entertainment compared to harder costs such as rent – and identify areas where you can make cuts.
Step 3: MAKE A PLAN
Decide what to do with the money you’ve saved – devote more to paying off debts, start or add to a savings account, or allocate money toward large expenses like a down payment or a vacation. If you’re tempted to spend the money you’ve earmarked as savings, set up some of your paycheck to be direct deposited to a savings sub-account named for your goal. You’ll think twice before “borrowing” from your New Car savings account.
Visit any branch or call 505.293.0500 or 800.947.5328 for help with sub-accounts or direct deposit. Visit slfcu.org/DirectDeposit to learn more about setting up a direct deposit.
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