Pay day is an exciting day no matter how you slice it. But even more exciting is saving a healthy chunk of your pay check for yourself. Your wants, your needs, and those little unexpected events that pop up.
The good news is that your can make the most out of your payday by paying yourself strategically. Whether your financial challenge is over-spending, hating spreadsheets, or you just can’t stand the details, read on for a few tips to tweak your income so that you can maximize your pay day.
Budget fix for the over-spender
For the over-spender who needs a little control in his life, scheduled self-payments can help you distance yourself from your own money. Look at your month’s expenses and schedule the payments for things like groceries, gas, food, and spending money. Use envelopes or a calendar system to “pay yourself” when it comes time to make that purchase, but otherwise limit your contact with your income. Bank your savings as you go, or see how much you can gather by the end of the month.
Budget fix for the spreadsheet-averse
Spreadsheets can be very intimidating, even when it is to track something as interesting as your own money. If you prefer simple math or lists, combining your monthly income into a bulk payment might be for you. “Pay yourself” at the beginning of the month in one chunk payment, then pay your bills and expenses by keeping a single list of subtractions as you pull from that sum.
Budget fix for those who can’t be hassled with the details
If you feel like your time is wasted when you spend it on budgeting, laissez-faire budgeting could be for you. First, assess your budget needs including utilities, rent, and spending and make sure the total amount is covered by the sum in your account. Then, set an account cushion of a few hundred dollars and stop watching. Check in every month to make sure you haven’t been incorrectly billed or missed a payment, but otherwise invest your saved time into other pursuits.
What style do you use to manage your money?