A budget is the cornerstone of responsible financial planning. It shows exactly how much money you have and where it’s being spent. A budget can help you find ways to save money and plan for the future. These Millennial budgeting tips can help you get your finances in order to avoid drowning in debt.
Millennial Budgeting Tips
Start with a Budgeting Worksheet
Documenting your income and expenses no matter how large or small they are is the foundation of budgeting. You can use either a conventional method or a newer way to track your budget. There are a number of budgeting apps that can help you. ACCC has a range of downloadable budgeting worksheets to help you start the process.
Start Building an Emergency Fund
You could be a Millennial or on the verge of retirement; either way, an emergency can occur anytime. Therefore, building an emergency fund is one of the most important Millennial budgeting tips. If an emergency fund does one thing, it gives you peace of mind. Having a cushion to fall back on will help you stay financially afloat while everything else around you may seem to be sinking. So, how much should you actually save to avoid possible consumer debt? Guidelines vary but a reasonable starting point for anyone is to amass three to six months’ worth of critical living expenses.
Don’t Give into Small Luxuries
Buying your coffee, breakfast, and lunch out every day seems convenient and probably trendy. However, once you develop your budget and start tracking your expenses, you will realize this racks up a big bill every month. Therefore, not giving into these small luxuries is among the most important Millennial budgeting tips. Make your coffee and breakfast at home and pack up a brown-bag lunch to save these additional expenses.
Social media is big among a lot of Millennials. This opens up a window to compare and be compared to your peers. Millennials can sometimes engage in unnecessary spending to keep up with their friends. Try not to fall into that trap.
Start Saving for Retirement
Millennials are not too young to start thinking about retirement if they haven’t already. Retirement sneaks up on you unexpectedly. Surviving on a steady paycheck and surviving on retirement money are two totally different things. So get a move on and start to save! Two ways you can start saving for retirement are investing money in your 401(k) or setting up an IRA account. You can also choose to do both.
If you are in search of budgeting advice, speak with a certified credit counselor at American Consumer Credit Counseling by calling 800-769-3571.