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Showing posts with label budget. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Low-Maintenance and Stress-less Ideas to Get You Past Tough Budgeting Challenges

Facing Budget Challenges?

Budgeting Challenges

Sticking to a budget is a lot like dieting. Sometimes all it takes to break your momentum is a limited edition Louis Vuitton handbag or a bowl of gelato ice cream in the fridge. Just like dieting, budgeting is hard to stick to. We need to watch every move, stick to our plan, and be careful this isn’t the day we don’t waste it all on a single purchase, a single food binge that would ultimately get a year’s worth of efforts down the drain.

But think of it this way: Anything worth having requires dedication and hard work. So if in a moment of blind panic, you got sidetracked from your goal, get right back and stay there for the long haul with the following strategies:

1. Treat money like you would a family heirloom.

Imagine running out of money and being forced to sell your mother’s 30-year-old pearl necklace or your father’s first ever Rolex watch. Surely it won’t be easy on your heart saying goodbye to these treasures, so hold fast to that wad of cash. Don’t part so carelessly with it.

2. Don’t get trap in the vicious cycle of technology upgrade.

If your iPhone 6s is still fine, what do you want the iPhone 7 for? If there’s nothing wrong with it and it works in more or less the same way with the one you’re about to purchase, then there’s no need to cough up cash for the upgrade. 

The latest Photoshop version probably is not necessary if you have a good and running Leopard, the same way that a working laptop is a practical money-saver over a new one.

budgeting tips

3. Consider yourself the priority payee.

Before paying off any debt, dish out 10% of your income first to yourself. Once you start paying bills, the money you are earning may not seem a lot, but automatically setting aside one tenth of it will go a long way in giving you a debt-free tomorrow.

4. Don’t shop when hungry.

Probably one of the most practical budgeting tips there is is to do your groceries on a full stomach. That way, you don’t get tempted to buy food on the go. While it’s not a no-no to splurge on food every once in a while, an empty stomach will make you want to eat twice as much and spend as much, even those kinds of snacks that do not normally appeal to you.

5. Take away choices that would make you more likely to cheat.

Availability is a serious enemy of debt-free wannabes. Uninstall apps of your favorite online stores so you can’t add items to your cart at a click. Cancel your credit cards to make it more difficult for you to buy items with borrowed money. Stop carrying your debit cards and bring cash instead to limit your purchases.

Budgeting Challenges

A budget is not something that appeals to people, so it can be difficult sticking to one at first. Between tuition fees for your kids and monthly mortgage payments, let it be said that saving is the most expensive occupation there is. 

But creating a plan and sticking to it can go a long way in preventing your interest from waning. Thankfully, the budgeting tips mentioned above can help you stay committed to your plan.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

How to Budget on an Inconsistent Income

Money matters is one thing that causes us headaches especially if you have an inconsistent income. So, today, we have a very helpful guest post about it.


Budgeting each month can be fairly easy for some people if they have a fixed monthly income to rely on. But, what if the monthly cash flow you are supposed to anchor your finances on is uncertain? Your expenses can easily get out of control if you don’t maintain a financial plan and you may end up not being able to stretch your income, enough to cover for all your monthly needs and obligations.
Here are some tips on how to create a personal budget when your month to month income is inconsistent.

1. Maintain a savings account. - If you don’t have any savings yet, start by opening a separate bank account to act as a buffer so you can meet your urgent expenses in case your income comes in late. Nowadays, there are microsavings accounts that you can help you achieve this goal. If you feel that your income is too small to start saving, you can begin by putting aside just P5 or P10 a day. While this may seem like a very small amount at first, you’ll be surprised at how quickly it can accumulate as you save some money on a daily basis.

If you can add more, then do so. Your spare change can go a long way; but make sure that you save the amount that you’ve decided on every day. And put it aside before you spend for anything else, for example, first thing in the morning or before you go to sleep at night. You can open a time deposit account and deposit the money once you have collected a significant amount, say a few hundred bucks. If you keep the cash out of sight and away from your hands, you won’t be tempted to use it.

2. Project your expected cash inflow for the month. - Estimate the minimum amount of money you expect to come in monthly. To do this, list the details of your monthly income for the past year. If part of your income is predictable, meaning it is safe to assume that you will earn it within 30 days, use it as a base for your expected monthly cash inflow. Then compute the average of your “unpredictable” income for the year and add it to the base amount. The sum will be your projected cash inflow.

If your entire income for the year is “unpredictable,” take the smallest amount and use it as basis for your monthly budget. For example, if in 2013, the lowest amount you earned in a month was P8,000, this is what you should assume will come in every month and build your budget around that.

3. List down your fixed expenses. - These expenses need to be paid every month including your utility bills (i.e. PLDT, Meralco, and Maynilad bills), rent, amortizations, medication, Philhealth premiums, and so on. Get the sum of all these expenses. When your income comes in, settle these first. If your bills don’t all come in on time for you to add them up, make assumptions based on the highest amount that you’ve paid before.

4. Determine how much to allocate for variable expenses. - Deduct your fixed expenses from your expected income. For example, if the sum of your fixed expenses is P4,500, subtract it from P8,000 and you’ll get P3,500. This is the amount you should allocate for variable expenses such as food, groceries, and miscellaneous expenditure. You can adjust your expenses in this category based on how much money actually comes in, but make sure that you prioritize savings and your fixed expenses before you allocate to your variable expenses.

5. Develop the habit of thrift. - Don’t think that just because you have more money in your pocket in some days, you have more disposable income to spend freely. Make sure that you save at least a certain amount before you spend it. Remember, you may have lean months as well. At the same time, however, don’t forget to allocate some money for fun things that you like, since you also deserve to enjoy your hard-earned money; perhaps start saving for a Christmas or vacation fund.

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