When it comes to your finances, it can be especially challenging to feel like it’s all under control. Bills are due left and right, and regular weekly and monthly expenses can feel less predictable in today’s economic times. With that being said, there are a few steps you could take that might help you breathe a little easier when it comes to managing your money.
Create a simple budget
Budgeting doesn’t have to be complicated. There’s no need to create a complex spreadsheet and get stuck in paralysis by analysis. Simply keep track of your total income (after taxes), list out all of your expenses, subtract your expenses from your income until you equal zero. This way every dollar has been assigned to a bill, spending category, or savings.
Track your spending
Once your budget is in place, keeping track of your spending is key. While you can do this by balancing your checkbook, that’s only one option of many tools available to you! Some personal financial management tools, such as Camden National Bank’s Money Manager, will automatically track and categorize your spending, allow you to set spending goals by category, and even view account balances that you have elsewhere so you can see the bigger picture. Learn more about our digital banking resources here.
Set up automatic bill pay
It’s happened to the best of us. You find a bill at the bottom of a junk drawer or hidden within your email spam folder and the due date was last week. You’re left with a late-payment penalty and sometimes your credit even takes a hit. Why not automate all of those payments using bill pay? If you have a wide range of days when your payments are due, then reach out to bill collectors and request that they align payment dates with your pay schedule. For instance, if you’re paid on the 1st and 15th of every month, ask if your bills can be due on the 5th and 20th of every month. Don’t drive yourself crazy trying to remember everything when you can automate your routine bills.
Most importantly, don’t get discouraged as you begin taking control of your finances. It’s a journey and everyone has to start somewhere. We’re here to help you succeed if you’re feeling stuck.
Learn how to begin cutting your expenses with “ 7 Simple Food Tips with Significant Savings”