This is a tough subject, one that has recently come up in my household – trimming the fat off your budget. If you don’t have a household budget, you need one, see my previous Financial Friday post about creating one. Once you have that in place, and if things get tight, you will need to find a way to trim the extras that you can stomach out.
1 – Hobbies; now while I definitely think that everyone should have a hobby, you will need to honestly calculate the cost of your hobby. Double check past financial records to see how much you’re spending on that hobby and make some tough decisions on how much you can afford to spend on it monthly. Chances are, you have a stockpile of supplies to use up before you will need more.
2 – TV, internet & phone; there are lots of options to bundle or downgrade your services, do you have 150 channels yet only watch 8 of them? Do you need a better long distance plan? A better cell phone plan? It’s worth it to call the local providers, check your options and save some money by investing a little time.
3 – Kids are expensive! Now they aren’t optional once you have them, but doing allowance with my boys has saved me a lot of money on their gimmes. Instead of caving in to their wish lists, from the grocery store to the toy section, they have their allowance money to spend and that way I don’t have to sacrifice my budget to suit their wants.
4 – Grocery store budget; don’t blow the budget here, shop with a list, with a budget in mind, and this will keep you on track.