Everybody knows that a budget is the best way to stay in control of your finances – Right?
Keeping track of what you’re spending and what you’re earning each month can help you to avoid overspending, but it isn’t a magic solution that guarantees financial security. Sometimes, you’ll have a budget mess up and you’ll be spending more than you’re bringing in. If that happens, you need to sort it out right away, otherwise, you’ll end up in a lot of debt and that’s incredibly hard to come back from. If you’ve got a budget shortfall, these are the steps you need to take to deal with it.
Don’t Miss Payments
The first thing to do is make sure that you’re paying any outstanding bills you might have. If you’re missing payments, you might get late fees which is only going to make things worse. You can call the companies and explain the situation, some may let you pay the bill a bit late without charging you. That way, you can prioritise those bills that need to be paid first. If you’re really struggling and you’re going to get a load of fees, you might be best off finding loan companies and borrowing the money. It’s not a good habit to get into long term, but it can buy you a bit of time while you sort out your finances in the long term.
Check Your Bank Fees
Some bank accounts will charge you a monthly fee, and maybe fees on withdrawals and payments etc. If you aren’t getting a good deal from your bank and you’re paying out loads of money in fees every month, that’s a lot of wasted money. It might be time to say goodbye to your current bank and look elsewhere for a better deal. That extra money might be enough to plug that gap in your budget.
Change Your Spending Habits
Often, a budget shortfall comes about because of bad spending habits. It’s the small things that add up, like buying lunch at work every day. It doesn’t seem like much but when you add up how much you’re spending each month, it’s a significant amount. If you can go through your budget and find all of these small expenses and get rid of them, you’ll save yourself a lot of money. Monthly subscriptions are another big one; people often forget about them completely and if you’re paying a couple of different ones, you could be wasting a lot of money every month.
Don’t Neglect Savings
It’s tempting to stop paying into your savings account when you’re struggling with your budget but that isn’t sensible. Having a healthy savings account can help you get out of trouble if the same situation arises in future so you should make sure that you’re still paying in. If you’re struggling for money, you can reduce the amount that you put in there each month until you’re a bit more stable, but you should always try to pay something in, even if it’s only a tiny amount.
It’s easy to panic when you’ve got a budget shortfall but it’s important that you stay calm. Pay any outstanding bills and then use these tips to get your finances in order again! Easy peasy.