It is like yesterday when 2018 knocked on the door. The year has moved so fast. Easter has already come and gone with all its anticipation and anxiety.
If you still think you have 2018, well the fact is, we have only nine months to the end the year. What are you doing with your finances?
Did you develop a financial plan for the year? Are you still on track? All these questions need answers that can define how your financial position will be reflected in the coming months and years.
However, this is what you need to know in order to keep on track.
You need to have a budget: I will continually say “without a budget it is like day dreaming” and you have to wake up from the slumber and plan for your spending decisions.
Most people have talked about it but few make budgets. When you don’t have a plan where your money will go before you earn it, you never see what your money can do.
You need to be honest with your income, only plan for the money you realistically expect to receive, there is stress in counting your chicks before they hatch.
I am talking about high expectations of windfalls and probability of winning a lottery.
If you are earning monthly, develop a plan to guide your daily expenses which can be populated in a monthly budget.
Keep that saving goal burning. It’s easier to set a goal but it’s harder to fulfil the promise of saving biweekly or monthly, it takes discipline.
However it’s easier to reach your goal when you are reminded of it every month.
Decide to live within your means, avoid spending more than you get and try as much as possible to have a plan.
Learn to calculate your income to help you understand what exactly you have to spend in a day. This is where most people spend what they don’t have and find themselves in debt.
Take note of the difference between income and expenses. After listing your incomes and expenses total it up to know whether you have a surplus or deficit budget.
Do something either way, if it’s a surplus consider ways on how to invest and save the surplus money.
If it’s a deficit still look for items that you can cut out and if you can’t get where you want to be, turn to your income and see how to increase your sources of income.
Ask yourself if you can work over time or need to have a second job in order to meet the difference.
Otherwise it’s prudent to work towards incomes exceeding expenses.
Don’t confuse luxuries with necessities. Food is a necessity but eating at a four-star restaurant is a luxury.
Consider more of food prepared at home than constantly eating out in order to save some money.
Avoid finding ways of spending your money without a financial gain, rather find ways how to save more and invest more.
Annet Katusiime is a certified financial literacy trainer: