Starting The New Year on a New Family Budget

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Executives

Spending to Your Budget Household finance is more about everyday  money management and a lot less 'sexy' than  some other types of high-flying financial advice  available. It is because that much of it is  common sense - things that we already know  (but fail to put into practise!) - that it isn't  headline material. But the truth is, poor  household financial management can be at the  core of a family's financial problems. I  know from personal experience, It's hard to sit  down  and create a budget and to stick to it!    It's hard not to pull out that debit card when    you see something that you just "have to  have."

Because people generally stay with the same employer over time, and their wages remain constant, it is possible to prepare a budget that is manageable. Most household finance expenses do not fluctuate very much from month to month. Of course, from time to time, we might need new tyres on the car or a new washing machine - by these larger expenses can be averaged over a 3-5 year period and be included in your budget.

With Realtors and other Independent Contractors it's quite different, you may receive a check for $2,000.00, but may not know when your next income check will come.  That can be very frightening and cause a great deal of stress in your life.  A budget will help to alleviate some of this stress. 

The trouble is that most families just can't be bothered, or are afraid to, honestly analyse their income and expenditure. This can often result in, with the help of credit cards, more money going out than coming in. When this is the case, the ability to repay the debt diminishes and the household finance budget spirals out of control.

Importance Of A Budget for You and Your Family

When your household budget revolves around a family, it is even more important. Preparing it will take time - but consider it an investment in your future financial security. Because your decisions will impact your family's future, it is even more important to get it right. The larger the family, the more important it becomes to have funds on standby for emergencies. Without a good financial plan, living payday to payday will become a risky way of life.

Smart money management is much more than merely making sound spending decisions. It involves of course, planning a budget, limiting or cutting expenses, and, very importantly, putting a specific amount away each month to a dedicated savings plan.

Be mindful that simple errors on the part of a sales assistant or your bank can impact on your budget. Examine every transaction and receipt carefully.

Having your wages paid directly into your bank account, and withdrawing funds as they are needed (subject to bank charges for small withdrawals), and having a nominated amount moved to a untouchable savings account, is a good start.

Once you begin spending to your budget, you will be amazed at the things you would have previously opened your wallet for. Do you need to buy a newspaper everyday (read online!), or that cappuccino on the way to work (would 'instant' at work really affect your lifestyle??), and instead of fast food for lunch, why not take some leftovers from home? Small, steady changes in your spending habits will have a huge impact on your household financial budget - and there is no time like the present to start!


Posted by

Janie Masterson, Realtor, GRI, CLHMS

2106 Trenton Rd, Clarksville TN

Direct 931 801-3348




Comments (6)

Elite Home Sales Team
Elite Home Sales Team OC - Corona del Mar, CA
A Tenacious and Skilled Real Estate Team

It is true as I set my goals for the new year for the business I also set a new budget for home and business.

Dec 20, 2009 04:30 AM
Rob D. Shepherd
RETIRED - Florence, OR

We are looking ours over right now. We have looked this time of year for many years. Some cuts are made some things are changed. Maybe cheaper insurance rates elsewhere,maybe a change in garbage companies just to name a few.

Dec 20, 2009 04:30 AM
Retired from ActiveRain
Baker, OR

We tend to spend our money on what we value or consider to be important.  Saving for retirement is a form of spending without the immediate gratification.  Now is a good time to add sound money management to our 2010 New Year's resolutions.

Dec 20, 2009 05:26 AM
Janie Masterson
RE/MAX Executives - Clarksville, TN
Realtor GRI CLHMS - Trusted Real Estate Resource

Yes, I agree with!  I tell me son, as I have for the past few years now.....we only spend money on what we NEED not what we want.  It took a few months to sink in, but he's got it now.  He's sixteen..........

Dec 20, 2009 06:24 AM
Marcia Hawken
Naples Luxury Specialist

Good Job, Janie,  We all need to learn to live a different way. Consumerism got us in this mess.  We will have to save our way out of it! Happy Holidays!

Dec 22, 2009 10:06 PM
Bo Zivak
Zivak Realty Group - Nashville, TN
Nashville Real Estate Broker

Yes, I agree! Even as we set our goals for the new year, I try to learn from everyone. 

Nov 15, 2022 01:20 AM