Spring is in the air! The new season inspires many of us to declutter and start fresh. However, spring cleaning isn't just for your home. Now is also a great time to refresh and reorganize your finances, too!
Try these three easy steps to spring clean your budget:
#1: Schedule a budget check-in
A budget isn't something you can set and forget. It's important to revisit your spending plan to make adjustments and updates. Schedule a time to sit down and reevaluate your budget. If you have a spouse or partner, they should be included too. Take a close look at your income and expenses — is everything still accurate? Use this opportunity to update budget categories, set spending limits and identify savings goals.
#2: Trim unnecessary expenses
Next, take stock of your monthly recurring expenses. This includes streaming services, subscription boxes and gym memberships. Are you using them enough to justify the cost? If not, it's time to cancel. It's also a good idea to review your contracts with cable, internet and cell phone providers. You might be able to negotiate a lower monthly payment, especially if you have a better offer from a competitor.
#3: Put your savings on autopilot
One of the best ways to increase your savings is to pay yourself first. This means putting a portion of your money into your savings as soon as you earn it. One way to automate your savings is to set up recurring transfers from your checking to your savings account. Another option to have your employer split your paycheck among separate accounts. When you pay yourself first and put your savings on autopilot, you don't have to think about saving money. You won't miss — or spend — what isn't in your account in the first place!
Spring is all about new beginnings, and that includes starting (or restarting) your budget! It's never too late to create a plan that sets you up for greater financial flexibility and freedom in the future.
At Wright-Patt Credit Union (WPCU), we're here to help you manage your hard-earned money so you can live the life you want to live. For more budgeting tips and tools, including helpful worksheets and interactive learning modules, check out our online Education Center.