“Budget” – a word many will use in a lifetime, but seldom apply the concept. The two most valuable resources made available to us in our lifetimes are time and money, if you waste one, you waste the other. The thing about time, you never get it back, and if you take the severity of planning properly too lightly, you may never get the financial opportunity back either. Many will say, “well, money is not everything”. This is true, in fact, money is not very much at all. However, money and our ability to govern it is a reflection of the business and individual character. Developing and implementing a budget adequately will set a common guideline for distributing income, ensuring spending does not exceed these margins, and finally, provide the peace of mind that comes when you have managed your money wisely. Some of the advantages that come with having a budget are
- More Financial Predictability
- Mathematic Approaches to Savings
- Improve Decision Making
- Monitor Performance
- Identify Difficulties and Problems
- Allocate Funds for Major Expense/Purchases
- Manage Money More Effectively
Let’s take a look at 5 steps you can take to set a budget in place for your new business as well as your household finances. These are not the end of all the processes, but they will provide you with helpful benchmarks, enabling you to systematically organize a plan that best fits your financial objectives.
- The very first thing you must do is begin with the end in mind. Write the vision. What is that you are aiming to accomplish? What is the vision for your mission? What are the financial aspirations? What is your operational budget? In other words, how much money does it take to keep the basic production functioning? Before even beginning, bombard yourself with questions and force those questions to give you a better understanding of your overall goal. What is the goal? Understand your ultimate end. What is your goal?
- Beginning tracking your savings, income, and expenses. How will you be able to budget except we assess the amounts over r a couple of months to determine an average earning, spending, and saving. Also, take into consideration fixed expenditures vs. variable expenditures. Fixed expenditures are things you do not have direct control over, while variable expenditures are expenses that you have control over and can change the amount you spend on them.
- The third step is to develop a cash budget. A cash budget is a plan for controlling cash inflows and outflows so that you can balance income against expense and savings. This step is the taking control of the money and assigning amounts. Determining how much is made, how much is saved, and how much gets spent.
- Put the Plan to Work. Try it out for a few months. Tweak it and make necessary adjustments. Keep an accurate record of the cash flows. Add up amounts and make comparisons of income against output. If your income is less than your output, then your upkeep will be your downfall.
- Compare the budget to the actual spending. For a while, it will be off a few dollars, it takes time. be patient with yourself and keep working on building the discipline required to be a good steward. The money has very little to do with it at all, it’s all a matter of what kind of overseer are you in the things given into your care. In this step, if need be, make adjustments and keep trying. Here, you can revise the amount you have budgeted for expenses to make your budget more effective. Also, you can evaluate your expenses to check where you can cut costs or reduce spending on unnecessary items. When you make adjustments, it is important not to reduce your payments toward savings since that portion of your budget is needed to achieve your financial goals.
This is not an easy task. From the most wealthy company, down to the one-bedroom studio apartment, everyone comes to a place where things must be budgeted. Initially, sticking to your budget might be difficult when you are tempted to buy things that you had not planned for, or when you incur unexpected expenses. Don’t give up! Budgeting requires sacrifice, but it is worth the peace of mind that comes when you have managed your money wisely to pay your necessary expenses and save money for the future
“When your outgo exceeds your income, your upkeep becomes your downfall.” – Dave Ramsey