Budgeting: The Easy Way
With everyone feeling the pinch and the holiday season on the horizon, now is a great time to talk about budgeting. In this 3-part series, I have tips for every type of budgeter, from the casual spender who just wants an app to do it all for them, to the hardcore tracker who wants to know where every penny is going.
If you want to see our own personal family budget, it's linked at the end.
But first, let’s take a look at an easy way to budget!
The Annual Budget
A super relaxed approach for anyone who wants to manage their money and has a consistent income each month is to do an Annual Budget.
This accounts for spending throughout the year and instead of getting a bill for £500 one month and leaving you short, you build up 12 payments of £41.60 each month, which hurts so much less.
You can totally keep track of this in a spreadsheet, but we personally use Starling Bank, and cannot recommend it enough!
Starling bank is not only a convenient, easy and user-friendly banking system built for the modern age, but it also comes with a free budgeting system called ‘Spaces’ which lets users create a hidden space within their account for bills and savings which can be accessed anytime, but feels separate to your spending money, so you always know exactly how much money you actually have every month.
Even though I have an inconsistent income being self-employed, and we have an irregular lifestyle travelling the world, this annual budget still works well for us as we still have many consistent bills we have to pay every month like pet insurance, van insurance, phone bills, etc.
We use it by doing exactly what I’ve shown you above, and then creating a ‘Space’ for each bill and every month, and on the 1st the app puts that money in the ‘Space’ and leaves our account showing just what we have as spending money that month. The bill can then be paid directly from that 'Space', at which point Starling notifies you, so you never have to worry about it again.
If you use this link to sign up to Starling, they will plant a tree for us :)
If you want to see what a family budget looks like on the road, take a look at our own personal family budget here!
Sign up to the Raise Your Game newsletter or follow my socials to see the next part in the series: Monthly budgeting – Accuracy where it counts.
As a licenced bookkeeper in training with years of experience in managing corporate events, I’m pretty good with budgets! If you need any help with managing your personal or business budget or want help with reducing your bills, contact me for a free 30-minute consultation here.