Keeping a budget is a valuable skill – one we, at least, tend to rediscover every year around Tax Season. But, through a recent Crowdtap survey, we learned that 52% of our members follow a budget year-round!
Some use it to save or cut down on debt; most do it as a way of life. Of the 4,000+ members surveyed, 56% cited having enough money to live as the main catalyst for starting a budget.
Balancing money tends to begin when people start making money (usually after finishing school and starting to work), though a subset of our community learned the budgeting basics before heading out into the real world.
Surprisingly, budgeting apps weren’t very popular among our respondents – only 11% said they used tools like Mint or Digit. Most people monitored money themselves, either by balancing checkbooks and accounts or tracking spending on a spreadsheet.
Sticking to a budget isn’t a piece of cake: a third of respondents said they’ve tried budgeting, but find it difficult to stick to.
The top tips our members shared to those looking to start a budget included setting realistic goals, using cash, and including fun activities to keep from feeling deprived.
“Keep it simple: if you overspend, just keep moving. A budget is organic, it will flow and change. Life is not lived in a box and neither is your budget. Find an app or method (envelopes, spreadsheet) that works for you and stick with it. Involve the whole family, kids too in budgeting!” – Tori B.
“Don’t neglect to save and give, even when you think you don’t have enough. Even $5 can make a difference if it gets you into the habit of saving.” – Heather L.
“Make it livable, if you make it too tight you won’t stick to it.” – Carley M.
Once you have a working budget, the fun part comes in: rewarding yourself with some of the money saved! Here’s how our members indicated they would spend:
Do you have any tips or tricks that we missed? Or did you pick up something helpful that will motivate you to start budgeting? Let us know in the comments, and share this post or the images within in with others looking for advice!