Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Cha-ching: Budgets and Over-Shopping

Welcome to Cha-Ching: Posts about money. In these posts, we'll discuss budgeting, overspending, buying, selling, trading, you name it! Because extra money means more Lilly, it's important to make the most out of it.

The thing I've noticed the most from living alone is that no one is here to stop me. I am almost a full-fledged adult, and I've got a nice little paycheck and holes burned into my pockets.

It's taken me a whole year's time to figure this out, so please let me spare you, post-grads: your money is going to different places now. You must stop shopping on frivolous things.

What counts as frivolous? That depends, what's in your budget?

Are you saying, "Huh!? What budget?" because if you are, grab a piece of paper and write down everything you've spent money on this month. Everything - right down to the slush puppies you've been getting at the Circle M before work. (Yes, that may be a personal example. It's hot!)

Whattya got? I hope the first thing on your list is RENT followed by UTILITIES, such as electricity, heat and the like. After that, I'd like to see some GROCERY money, PET FUNDS (Kitty Cat's gotta eat) and maybe a little something for yourself - mine is the JULEP subscription box. And, if you've got everything under control, a little bit going into SAVINGS. Add all those suckers up! How much do you spend?

It doesn't have to be fancy! 

Now, grab your last paystub or two, depending on how much you get paid. Subtract how much you're spending from your paycheck -excluding your taxes and health insurance (if your company supplies it.) What do you have left?

Look at the number. How does it make you feel? Happy? Sad? Alarmed? Like you've lost control of your life? Some of those feelings I will encourage you to take to your parents, or a therapist (no judgements) but hopefully, you've got a little something left over.

There are a few ways to wrangle those numbers down, you know. If you have the patience, try couponing. Like books, movies and magazines? Get them from the library. Lots of designer clothes? Try selling ones you don't wear online.

I'll cover some more money-saving tactics I've been using as the month goes on. Do you have a specific tactic you'd like to see a how-to for? Share with me in the comments below!

Stay true to yourself,

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