Balancing Budget Exercise
Created on 3/1/2010 by Disciplanner
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Last year, I decided that the best way to save money was to develop a budget and stick to it. Here is was I did to make that happen.

1. I made a list of all income sources (wages, interest income, etc.).

2. I made a list of all major expenditure categories (mortgage, groceries, automobile expenses, household expenses, dining, entertainment, vacation, etc.).

3. I set a savings goal.

4. I set up a preliminary budget based on what I thought I was spending.

5. I kept track of my expenditures daily. That is the key to really getting a handle on what you are spending and where you can make changes to save money. It is also crucial that you keep track of your small cash expenditures, such as stopping to get a cup of coffee at your favorite coffee shop. You'll be amazed at how much money you are spending on these kinds of things and were not really aware of it.

6. If you have never made a budget before, your first attempt at a budget may have unrealistic categories in it. I tracked my expenditures for several months, and then revised the budget categories to more realistic levels where necessary.

7. I disciplined myself to really keep track of spending on a daily basis. Before long, it became an established part of my routine, and I was able to keep a balanced budget and meet my savings goal.
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