By Michelle Lefebvre
As today’s economy shifts and your personal financial situation evolves, it’s a good reminder that our financial lives are not linear. There are times when money isn’t a big concern. Other times – like right now for some of us – we wonder how we’ll make it to the end of the month. That’s why developing a realistic budget is so important, especially when the world feels a bit unsettled.
I get it! It’s stressful to sit down and take a hard look at the numbers. But in the long run, having a budget will give you peace of mind. Reduce anxiety by thinking about a budget as a living, breathing document that you can adjust over time. This isn’t a one-and-done activity.
Creating a budget typically consists look at four basic numbers. And this is that one time when math does matter!
Start with your total income, then identify your needs and wants, and finally consider your savings goals. Now you’ll decide how much to allocate to those last three categories – and the specific items within each category.
For example, your entertainment line item may include subscriptions for cable or satellite TV, streaming services like Netflix, online exercise memberships or cash for evenings out. Whether you want to proactively save a little extra money each month or you’ve hit some hard times and need to cut back., it’s smart to evaluate the value of each subscription.
Share your budgeting tips or concerns in the comments section below. Together, we can move forward through the economic challenges of the pandemic with strength and confidence.
COUNTRY Financial® is the marketing name for the COUNTRY Financial family of affiliated companies (collectively, COUNTRY), which include COUNTRY Life Insurance Company®, COUNTRY Mutual Insurance Company®, and their respective subsidiaries, located in Bloomington, Illinois.