This tip kind of comes before yesterday's post if you're starting to try to manage your money better
- know your income and outgoings
- have a budget
I'm going to focus on the second today.
We have a budget for household shopping. I have x amount of money for food, cleaning products, loo roll, and pretty much anything I might buy at the supermarket. Yesterday (by which I mean the yesterday to the day i wrote this, not actually october second, see confession in my first post) I bought JJ a packet of Fireman Sam stickers which cost a quid, this came out of my household budget.
It's a fairly realistic budget, as I said yesterday, we recently increased this by ten pounds a week (and now I'm having odds and ends to empty out into my jar at the end of the week, most weeks, so I think it's a slightly generous budget, but allows for the extra I was needing)
But it also does reign me in at times when I might be tempted to splurge for the sake of splurging.
There are a few ways to come up with a budget figure for your household
A. Trial and error. Pick a number and try to stick to it. Yeah, it's a simple method, but can be frustrating until you've got it fixed.
B. Keep your receipts for a few days/weeks/months and do a rough tally of what you're spending and average it for a figure for the week/month, whichever works for you. I do a week, cos I think I'd be in danger of splurging at the start of a month and running out halfway through if I had a months figure in cash in my purse at the start of the month.
C. Make a list of things you buy regularly, and price them. I tend to remember a lot of prices in my head, just because that's the sort of brain I have, but sites like your supermarket online store, or 'my supermarket' is agood site for uk users to compare prices at different stores.
Then use that price list and make a realistic guess how much of each item you need in a week. Do the sums and come up with a total. I'd prob add on five to ten per cent to allow for anything you forgot to put on the list.
D. Use an online budget calculator. I've not got any links at my finger tips, but I'll try to find some later in the month.