31 Days to a Better Budget
Sorting Your Finances
Each day of the series offers new tips, ideas and a challenge to start the year with a solid financial plan.
We spent yesterday getting organized to create a new budget. Once you have your pile of bills, statements & income in one place, you can start to make some sense out of it. Spending a few minutes now, sorting the paperwork, will help with the next steps in the budgeting process. Don’t look at the amounts yet, don’t stress over the size of your bill pile. Just group each item into the following categories:
- Recurring bills
- Fluctuating bills
- One-time bills
- Credit card statements
- Bank statements
- Pay stubs
Paperclip or band each stack together—we’ll be working with them throughout the week. This is going to help, not only with creating a monthly budget, but with differentiating between bills, debt, household expenses and discretionary expenses—key information when it comes time to start tweaking the budget.
This is your only project for today—we’re keeping it light, because those numbers can be overwhelming when you are just starting out with a budget. Try not to look at them today, though—we’ll begin tackling that part later in the week. When you’ve finished today’s challenge, leave us a comment, shout it out on Facebook or use the #31DayBudget hashtag on Twitter—I’d love to share in your success!
I’m not a financial planner or a budget expert. I’ll just be walking you through the steps I take each time my budget needs an adjustment. In fact, I’ll be participating myself!
Thanks for the tips. A systematic approach always works. Happy New Year.