Getting Your Act Together

Getting Your Act Together

If you want this to be the year where you finally straighten out your finances, read on. If your finances have been sinking you deeper and deeper into debt each month, here are some ideas to help you get your financial act together.

Rule One: Every Dollar Counts!

How much of your hard earned income falls through the cracks each month? How many dollars are frittered away on a candy bar here and an espresso there? If you are like most people, you have no idea how much money each month falls through the cracks.

The best way to solve this problem is to start documenting every expenditure you make. Whether it's a cash, check or credit card purchase, you need to jot down what you spend your money on, each and every day. This includes those $1.00 candy bars.

One way to track your spending is to take several index cards and label them with different budget categories. Every time you spend something, jot down the purchase on the appropriate index card. At the end of the month, add up the purchases on each card and see exactly where your money has gone. From this, you'll be able to see how much money you've spent on nonessentials.

The money falling through the cracks each month can then be redirected towards savings or paying off debt. You can also track your spending instantly with palm software or on your computer with automatic downloads of all banking and credit card transactions. The software that I use has totally changed my life and how I look at my spending. It is available for a 30-day free trial at:

Rule Two: Rewards Are OK!

Allow yourself to splurge every once in awhile within reason if it helps you make your budget more fun and realistic. You probably won't stick to your plan very long if you are too hard on yourself.

Rule Three: Change Your Focus Every Month

Each month, focus on a different area of your budget to shave off a few dollars. If your monthly budget for entertainment is $100, try to reduce your budget by 10 or 20% this month and then remain at that spending amount each month until all your debts are paid off.

Freeing up cash in each area of your budget is one of the easiest ways to find extra money to pay off debts or put towards savings. If you need some great savings ideas for your budget, this is where my home study course "Financial Freedom From A-Z, (Get Out of Debt Now) can help you because it shows the steps I took to get out of debt and they worked for me and I want to help you do the same.

And finally, Rule Four: Pay Yourself Before The Bills

If you want to develop the spending patterns of the rich, you will always allocate some money each month towards saving and investing, no matter your level of income. This must be done before you pay your personal bills and is one of the most important habits you can develop.

To guarantee that you never miss a month, bypass your checking account and have the money directly deposited into a mutual fund, money market or savings account each and every month.

Practicing these four steps can do wonders for your finances and in helping you eliminate debt. Start now with step one and get out some index cards or try that budgeting software free for 30-days. Track your spending to include every dollar of income that you receive and you will be well on your way to eliminating bad debt and achieving financial freedom for yourself.

©Doris Dobkins, Money Saving Expert. Are you are looking for new ideas to get out of debt, save money and improve your finances? If so, get our FREE weekly tips that will put more money in YOUR pocket.Send blank email to:

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