“The biggest hurdle for people attempting to live on a budget is actually identifying every single category where income is consumed. But that’s easier said than done if you’re constantly grappling with debt and living paycheck to paycheck. If you’re wondering where to start and how to achieve budgeting nirvana, here’s a road map from the experts. If you don’t have a budget, now’s the time to create one. By following the above 12 easy steps, you’ll be on your way to financial freedom and building wealth for the future.”
Creating your first budget can be extremely overwhelming. So overwhelming, in fact, that only 40% of American families have a working monthly budget. But it’s worth the effort. Developing a budget that you can maintain over the long term has been definitively linked to building wealth, while simultaneously helping you get out of debt and cut expenses.
When I built my first budget several years ago, I knew approximately how much money I was making annually, but I had never broken down my expenses by category to figure out what I could afford on a recurring basis, or how much money I could regularly invest.
In short, I was spending money on the things I needed and wanted without determining first whether I could truly afford them. After overdrawing my checking account once or twice, and having to pay several bills with credit cards because of my lack of a working budget, I decided to get real and begin a budget.
If you’re a first-time budgeter, here are 12 steps to make the process as smooth and painless as possible.