It plays in your head like a broken record. Budget before you go bust, but we still find ourselves stretching our budgets, which can leave many of us to balance Januworry on a shoestring budget.
It is the perfect time to listen to the voices in your head that tell you not to make that purchase you don't need. However, if you are looking for a more grounded way to stick to your budget this Januworry, here are seven handy tips to get you started.
If you are making a big decision such as creating a budget, it is better to eat first. Scientific reports have shown that we make better decisions when we are not hungry. What better way to budget than when you are well-rested and have had something to eat? The trick is to do this at home instead of buying food from a store. Now that we have this out the way, you will be able to see how you can stretch your finances.
Before heading out to purchase something, compare your options. According to GFK South African data, 40% of South African Consumers check prices online then buy in a traditional store. January is known for a range of sales that can have you sailing through easy savings. Remember to compare your options and whether it is better to purchase online or instore before putting your money on it.
For those majestic beings that can brisk past the isle of temptation to what they came to the store for, lead us! We have all been in a spot where we add a few things to the basket that we know we do not need, even if we can afford it. Instead, have a list of things you need to purchase. Remember to always eat before you go out shopping. Your future self will thank you for it.
Live within your means
You know you have reached the ultimate stage of being an adult when you have the "We have food at home" conversation with yourself. Knowing what you can and cannot afford to do will help you avoid overextending yourself. It can also be a creative way to see how you can go around a problem without having to borrow money from your friends or family, which 43% of South African’s do before the month has ended.
Have an emergency account
Unfortunately, there are unexpected expenses that can catch any budget by surprise. The last thing you want is having to reach into your savings to cover minor expenses. If you do not have an emergency account in place for such moments, make it one of your resolutions to have one.
Learn to say no
This is a tough one, especially when it comes to your loved ones. Lending money or making purchases that you have not budgeted for is the quickest way to land you at square one. If you have wiggle room to do this, then more power to you. If not, be honest about your situation to keep it moving.
Track your spending
Whether it is grabbing a cup of coffee around the corner or going on a planned night out, always track your spending. This method can help you keep track of your spending and how much you have leftover. It can also prevent those moments where you are wondering where all your money went to.