We hear this phrase over and over this time of year. It relates to spring cleaning, home improvement projects, volunteerism and many other ideas.
Have you thought about it relating it to your finances?
We are nearly through the month of March! Christmas seems like it was a long time ago and we are now turning our thoughts toward summertime fun, home improvements, gardening and camps/childcare for the kiddos, to name a few things.
This is also kind of a crossroads financially because for many of us, while still paying for Christmas, we are also thinking about how we are going to fund our summer plans. This is a great time to tune up our budget and look for areas where we can pinch a few extra dollars to either pay down the old Christmas debt or save toward the summer costs so that you don’t add those expenses to your credit card balances. Any extra funds you can squeeze out of your budget right now will have a positive impact.
For most, the best area to find that extra money is in evaluating our miscellaneous spending…that money spent here and there without thinking about it much. Most of the time, it’s small purchases and while they aren’t much individually, they can add up to big bucks over the course of a month. This can also apply to stopping charges of these types on your credit cards which help you save too!
Look at money spent for coffee, Amazon, iTunes, little stops at the grocery store and meals out. For most, even if you cut a fraction of these expenditures in a month, you can find extra money that can be paid toward your debt or saved for summer fun. Switching to cash for these kinds of purchases can also help us because we tend to be a bit more stingy spending cash than swiping plastic. Giving yourself an allowance (a parameter) for this kind of spending can be really helpful!
Sometimes it is not the big changes we make in our money management but our small ones that propel us forward. If you’d like to have a conversation, ask a few questions or schedule a meeting, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or drop by an Ask Our Coach event at one of our branches.
Charnell is one of Verity’s financial counselors.