We all know it’s better to have a little cushion in our budget. What we don’t all know -or what we don’t yet believe- is that we can all have one. Well believe it! You can save up a one month cushion and Goodbudget can help!
Start with a Budget that Makes Sense
Building up a one month cushion starts with earning more than you spend. With Goodbudget, that means having a budget that spends less than your income. Head to the Add/Edit Envelopes page and check your existing budget to make sure the amounts you’ve planned to spend each budgeting period makes sense. You can find your total budgeted amount at the right side of the page.
If you’re currently spending more than your income, this will mean making some hard choices about what to cut. Use the information you’ve built up in Goodbudget to help you make those decisions with those around you. With the right information you can move past arguing about spending, and have conversations about the choices that matter. If this is your first time budgeting, we’d recommend starting with a budget based off your current spending. That will give you an accurate picture of where you are today, and provide the information you need to make changes for tomorrow.
Stick With It, and Be Flexible!
Once your budget makes sense, all that’s left is to stick with it. The key here is to give your budget the room to adapt to what life gives you. When you receive your income, click on the Add Transaction button to add it and you’ll find your income Available, ready for you to fill your Envelopes with. This will let you be flexible with how you fill your Envelopes, so that you can make changes mid-stream if things come up. This can mean partially filling your Eating Out Envelope so that you can pay the full amount for a credit card payment.
At the start of each budgeting period, or as you need to, fill your Envelopes. Prioritize the expenses you need to pay before your next paycheck and leave a remainder aside when you can. If your budget is less than your income, then over time this remainder will grow and build up to a one month cushion.
Be Kind to Yourself and Your Budget
Most importantly, be kind to yourself! Give yourself -and your budget- the room to make mistakes and adjust as necessary. Building up a one month cushion isn’t like taking a test that you pass or fail. It’s a daily choice to move in the right direction. With your Goodbudget, you can make the right decisions day after day.