For a lot of people, summertime is a time when budgets are often ignored. If you are anything like me, you might have found yourself splurging on trips, patio drinks, baseball games, date nights, and golf outings. You may have built up some credit card debt or have seen your cash reserves dwindle over the summer—it happens! You are not alone. How about we spend the next few months replenishing those reserves or paying off those debts? Here are a few pointers for you!
- Look back and review your spending. By assessing the damage, you can learn from it and potentially plan ahead for next summer! Why not build up a “Summer Fun Fund” so you don’t have to feel guilty next time?
- If you did rack up some credit card debt, set an autopay plan to get it paid off as soon as possible. I recommend leaving the credit card at home so you are not tempted to use it when out and about.
- If your cash reserves are lower than you’d like, set up an auto-draft into your savings account for the next few months to get it built back up. Paying into your savings first, before you’re able to spend it on non-necessities, will naturally help you reduce spending.
- Plan ahead! Just like you can plan ahead for a “Summer Fun Fund,” you can plan ahead for big expenses coming this fall/winter. Create a budget for Christmas shopping. Plan ahead for any spring break trips. By doing this you can have the money set aside and ready, and it will keep you from having to dig out of a hole afterwards.
Keeping track of your spending and saving for big expenses can actually free you up to enjoy your experiences more. Wouldn’t you rather focus on enjoying those moments instead of having to stress about the money? Planning ahead can really help with that.
Caleb Pearson, Compass Advisor