Staying on top of your budget in 2016

Writing your expenses down on paper will work

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) – Money, money, money! It seems like we can’t do anything without it, and trying to save it, as well as stick to your budget, it can be difficult. With the new year in full swing some are hoping to accomplish, or start, financial goals this year.

“There are certain things you have to do to say that you’re going to be managing your money better in 2016,” said Terri Conley, Vice-President and Commercial Loan Officer of Terre Haute Savings Bank.

Conley says the first thing you have to do is set up a plan, take a look at how much you make and how often you’re getting paid.

“Budget your money based on 90 percent of your paycheck,” said Conley, “That other 10 percent, try to budget so you can set it aside in a savings account.”

Another crucial step in your plan is to take a look at how much and where you’re spending your money. Conley suggests taking your receipts, as you accumulate them throughout the week, and place them in an envelope.

“At the end of the week, go through and see how much you spend, but you need to do that for several weeks,” said Conley.

Conley says fixed expenses, like car payments, rent or mortgage, are easy to keep track of, it’s the unknown expenses that you have to watch out for.

“I think people really underestimate how much they spend on groceries, children, grandchildren, birthdays, medicine” said Conley, “That can really throw a budget out of sync.”

Need help on keeping records of your spending?

“Financial institutions make it easier and easier for you,” said Conley, “They give you the tools you need to help you budget.” From mobile apps to computer services, online banking and online bill pay can also help.

If you don’t have access to a computer, Conley says something as simple as writing your expenses down on paper will work.

While there are different ways to manage your money, Conley says starting with the basics should put you on the right track.

“Know what you’re spending and see how that plays out,” said Conley, “It’s going to take a few months, it’s not going to happen within a week.”

Copyright 2016 WTHI

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