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Staff Writer at Debt Reduction Services

Budget resolutions can improve your finances, relationships, and health.

Kick Your Life into Gear by Setting Budget Resolutions

Updated January 1st, 2019

Sometimes the little things add up to big-time issues. They sneak up out of nowhere and typically make a mess of things.  When it comes to your finances or your health this leads to undesirable consequences. If you follow these ten steps you may find a wealthier and less stressed you right around the corner. You’ll help build healthy financial habits for yourself and be rewarded with the ultimate goal of attaining financial security. The last thing we want is for retirement to sneak up on us! It really is amazing how fast 20 or so years can go, and we don’t want find out we aren’t close to where we need to be. Every little bit helps!

Try these ten rules to live by in the coming year:

1.   Live with fewer wants and focus on your needs: You may want the trendiest and newest item on the market right now, but waiting and resisting the temptation to splurge might help you avoid spending your hard earned money on a fad that you may have little interest in later. If you’re looking to swap a cell phone, gaming console or other electronic devices, keep in mind there is nothing wrong with getting a little extra mileage out of something before replacing it.

2.   Put the plastic down: By not charging to your credit cards you can avoid unnecessary interest fees or other potential charges that by using a cash only method you can avoid altogether. A credit card, when broken down to its basic form, really is just another loan that is designed to make money off of your spending while being masked as ‘convenience’.

3.   Use coupons this year: Excellent deals can be found online or in print coupons to those willing to take some time to look for them. Every penny counts! If you can’t find a coupon for an item you really want, consider waiting. More and more products can be found discounted through flash sales such as those found on Amazon.

4.   Save first, spend later: Get yourself into the habit of saving 5 to 10 percent of your income each month. Make it your goal to not touch it. Consider it out of sight, out of mind. Add to the percentage you are saving as you find additional income. By the end of the year, you will be in a better position than you were before you started saving. Share your savings goals with those closest to you for added accountability. Keep track and watch your progress. Believe it or not, with the right approach and mindset, this can even be fun!

5.   Pay off your debt as soon as possible: The quicker you buckle down and take care of your debt the quicker you can use that money for saving and investing back into yourself. Wage a war on interest. Every day that goes by that you carry a balance on your credit cards is another day you are essentially burning your own money, for things that have possibly depreciated or aren’t used much anymore.

6.   Clean up your loose change: Invest in a change counter and watch your pennies add up. (We picked up our electronic piggy bank for less than $10.00 and have already saved more than double that amount.) This is a simple way to experience a sense of accomplishment.

7.   Dine at home: Fast food may seem convenient and affordable, but it can end up breaking the bank quickly, not to mention assist in packing on the pounds fast. Make a meal plan at home and buy in bulk if possible. The benefit from following this rule can increase your savings while trimming your waist, consider it an added benefit.

8.   Consider traveling close to home for your vacation this year: Who knows, your favorite destinations might be closer than you thought! If you’re extremely strict with your budget you can always have a ‘staycation’ right at home. Maybe this is a good year to finally take command of your to-do list at home? Fixing your budget and financial areas of concern right now will allow you a more generous travel lifestyle later on.

9.   Make your own date night at home:  Instead of going out for a movie and spending up to $20.00 a ticket in some areas. Pick up a rental, pop some popcorn, and enjoy Hollywood from the comfort of your own living room. Redbox or Netflix are great options for finding a recent release. An even better and more affordable option just might be your local library. Check it out and you might be surprised at their rental selections. Plus you want to get back into reading, don’t you?

10.   Second-hand doesn’t equal second class: Take a peek at your local thrift stores, you just might find they have exactly what you are looking for at a fraction of the price you would pay if you were to buy brand new. I enjoy reading and like building my own little library, I purchase all of my hardcover books for a couple dollars or less at local thrift shops.

While this list can be a bit challenging I can attest that if you put forth the effort early on in the year or even start these habits now that you will be in a better financial position next year! And with your finances in order, you may see a ripple effect of improvement in other areas of your life such as in your health and relationships.

Good luck and may you find prosperity and more freedom from stress in the new year!

Do You Have Questions About How You Can Be in Better Financial Shape this Year?

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  1. John Williams

    I am a fan of reducing debt with unexpected funds. Too often, those burdened by debt receive unexpected money and squander it because they didn’t expect to get it. The obvious greater benefit to them would have been to apply it to debt. The recessions has helped highlight the risks associated with carrying debt in a light that most banks and lending institutions would prefer to have kept in the shadows.

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