Why I am starting to use a budget binder...

Well the time has finally arrived, I have had a light bulb moment and realised that I really, really need to start watching what I spend. This moment came when I opened my bank account after the Euros and I realised just how much I spent with only football shirts and scarves to show for it. I have never been too good with my money but now the Euros are over and done with I am more determined than ever to get a budget in place and actually stick to it. July was always going to be a high spend month as I am considering those Euros as a once in a lifetime opportunity so I kind of spent for the memories but now with the economic climate in the state it is I know I need to reign in what I am spending and actually start building up some saving rather than living pay day to pay day like I have done recently. 

There are so many things I want to change in the house and a big thing is to convert the garage into a home gym so I know now me and Liam need to start being so much better with our money so that we can get all these jobs done whilst actually putting some money aside for just in case too. 

I have created myself a budget which I might go into a bit further down the line but I am also hoping that I can use this budget binder to do the cash stuffing method and stick to that budget even more than I would if I just had a spreadsheet on my PC and still stuck to using my card and not referring back to my bank account like I have done lately and that is when I really do lose track of what I have spent and continue to go overboard. I have budgeted the set amount of what will go in each of these envelopes each pay day and I am hoping that over time I can have money left in these each envelopes and never go over the amount I set for myself each month. So here is what each envelope is and what it is actually going to be used for...

Football - This is for the women's football matches we are wanting to go to each month where we don't already have tickets. Each month a set amount will go in here and we will try not to exceed it. We go to a fair few games and have even more planned so I might increase the budget for this over time but for now let's see how it goes.

Halifax football - This is where I will be putting little vouchers for my Friday night football sessions and subs for when I play as all the money is bank transferred for these sessions. I am hoping that this will mean I always have money in the bank put to one side for these sessions as I try go to many more of them now I am seeing my fitness levels increase.

Boxing - This is going to have roughly £25 in each month ready to pay for each session I am going to be going to. I try to go weekly so this £25 should cover every session between pay days and in some cases I might have £5 left over which will rollover to the next 5 week period so I always have the session covered without having to worry about scraping money together on the final Wednesday before payday. The only time this should increase is if I start going to 2 sessions a week but honestly I don't see that happening for a while.

Goal Shop - This is the big one for me as it is what I am really going to need hopefully sooner rather than later. Each month I am going to be putting a small amount into this envelope and when I have money left in other areas that will also go into here as this is for when I finally get to my goal size & weight. This money is not going to be touched until I reach that goal and it is going to pay for me a new wardrobe that actually fits me and the style I will be going for.

Holiday Spends - This envelope is going to be the one that changes seasonally. As it stands it has the money in that I have saved for my upcoming holiday but once that is done I am going to change it to being for Christmas gift money with the occasion quickly approaching. The fact that I can change this so often means it should always have a purpose and I am looking forward to seeing how much I can get in it before I start Christmas shopping, although I probably will have to use some money saved on my card for a few items especially when it comes to things for Liam and my nephew.

Treats - I am hoping that by having this folder I will only buy the items I really really need/want rather than spending money for the sake of it like I have been doing each month. This is only going to be a very small budget compared to what I normally spend so I am hoping the restriction really helps me limit myself. Although I am very tempted to create a separate one just for football shirts as they are so expensive these days and I don't buy them every month honestly, this would mean I could save for all the shirts I want alongside still treating myself to other bits every now and then. 

 I am really hoping that by doing this I can stick to using cash more often and leave the card at home and by the end of the month if I do stick to this I should have a fair amount left to put into my savings at the end of each month meaning jobs in the house should get done much quicker than if things continued the way they are doing. I am really hoping this does work and I can stick to this and be much better with my money and eventually get Liam on board with it too as things have stalled in the house and it is certainly time to change that and get the house just as we want it. It is time to really knuckle down now and be much better with my money and stop wasting it like I have been doing. It is time to change my habits and the use of this budget binder should only be the beginning... 

Do you stick to a budget or do you just wing it like I have been doing?

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