One thing that I want you to know about budgeting is that it’s never going to be perfect. Yup. I said it. Budgeting will never work out 100%. The sooner you accept that fact, the happier you’ll be with budgeting overall.
I’m a budget coach and I don’t get it right all the time. We’re human! While budgeting may never be perfect, you can make some budget adjustments to save more money and help you succeed.
I’m going to take you through a few key budget adjustments that will help you put more money in savings and keep more money in savings! Feel free to get creative with these adjustments and find budget adjustments that work for you.
Since budgeting is never going to be perfect, you get free rein to find the tweaks that help you master your money.
5 Budget Adjustments to Save More Money
#1 Reduce your Fun Spending allotments
Often, the first thing I recommend to clients looking to save more money is to reduce their fun spending. This can be extremely helpful, whether you have a budget or not.
The only difference when having a budget is that you know how much you should be spending on those categories usually. From there, you can reduce them even further to put more in savings.
I don’t recommend clients reduce their fun spending allotments completely. Giving yourself something to enjoy life with can help you succeed with budgeting.
If you decide that you do want to go on a “spending fast” and not spend anything on fun or discretionary, give yourself a time limit. The longer you go with out treating yourself (in moderation), the more likely you are to splurge and undo all of your progress.
#2 Make sure you’re saving what you can afford
This can be a hard concept to follow but hear me out. If you’re saving too much money, based on what your budget is telling you, then you’re not really saving.
The “extra” money that’s going into savings is being pulled out at a later date, to cover bills or expenses. Or, you’re using credit cards because you don’t have money in your checking account to cover bills.
It’s important to use your budget to understand what you can afford to save. If you make $5000 a month, and have $4000 in bills, then you have $1000 left for discretionary spending and savings.
It wouldn’t be realistic to say that you should be saving $2000 a month. The numbers don’t lie, so make sure you have them laid out properly and stick to them.
#3 Audit your budget for subscriptions that can be cancelled
Another great way to save more money is to reduce your spending on things you don’t need. Random subscriptions, especially the ones that are quarterly, semi-annual or annual can send your money down the drain.
Take some time to do an audit of the subscriptions you currently have and see what can be cancelled. If you don’t know where to start, I’d suggest looking at your statements. Some debit and credit card companies have software to allow you to easily identify subscriptions. Give that a try too!
Make a list of all the subscriptions you have so you don’t forget in the future. Then, go through that list and see what can be cancelled.
Are you really using all those subscriptions? If not, get rid of them and put the difference into your savings.
#4 Automatically allocate extra income to savings
One of the best ways to reach your financial goals is to make more money—and put that extra money towards your goals! If you’re looking for budget adjustments to save more money, then I’d suggest having a game plan for extra money that comes your way.
When you have a plan for extra income before it comes, you can do the right things with it. If your goal is to save more, then your plan for extra income should be to send it straight to savings.
This takes the pressure off of you to figure out what to do with the extra money. This can also encourage you to go out and seek extra money! The more money you make, the more you get to put into your savings account.
#5 Budget monthly amounts for annual expenses
We’ve all been there, signing up for an expense annually and forgetting about it until our card was charged! Save yourself the stress of throwing your budget off by allotting a monthly number for your annual expenses.
For example, if you pay $600 a year for an expense, the monthly amount you’d save would be $50.
Put the monthly amount in an account dedicated to annual expenses. When the time comes to pay the bill, you won’t have to worry about your budget being thrown into disarray. Do this for as many quarterly, semi-annual or annual expenses you have.
There you have it! My go-to budget adjustments to save more money! Again, feel free to make these tweaks your own and add your own spin to them! Budgeting is a bunch of trial and error, so embrace that fact and get started!
Have you tried any of the budgeting tweaks listed above? What budget adjustments can you recommend? Drop a comment below to share!