How to Set Up a Family Budget

If you’re tired of running out of money at month’s end, you’re not alone. Unfortunately, unless you’ve been tracking what you spend each month, coming up short is all too easy. A well-thought out family budget can help you avoid unpleasant surprises.

Working Out Your Finances

All families are different, and no specific budget will work equally well for everyone. However, the amounts you allocate for expenses must be realistic. Out of every paycheck, experts recommend that you: (1) Invest or save at least 5 percent, (2) Direct about 15 percent toward debt, (3) Spend no more than 25 percent on mortgage or rent.

Saving for the Future

It’s vital to build a nest egg by setting something aside each month. When you sit down to write those checks, remember to pay yourself first.

Get Everyone Involved

Unless you’re setting up a personal budget, the decisions you make are sure to affect the entire family. Don’t leave them out of discussions. You’ll need their cooperation, and including the children in your planning will help them to understand the value of money.

Handling Emergencies

When you’re already struggling to put food on the table, you may be reluctant to take on any debt. However, emergencies have a way of popping up. When they do, a military loan from a company that abides by the Military Lending Act can help to tide you over.

Track Your Expenses

Try to keep on top of every cent that comes in and goes out. Some people enjoy doing this, and those that don’t can avail themselves of software to make it less painful. When you are stationed away from home, setting up an online payment option can help you to pay off your loans.

On the Road to Financial Stability

Once you have committed to tracking your expenses, dealing when necessary with emergencies, and setting something aside each month, you will gain a sense of control over your affairs. Most importantly, when you need to borrow money, be sure to deal with a financial institution that understands the special needs of the military. The right choice can be vital to keeping yourself and your family afloat!

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