A splurge is healthy every once in a while, as long as you know your limits. I find that having a physical list of monthly debits and credits helps me stay on track with paying bills, putting money into my savings, and having fun. This is how I balance my finances.
Since I live in New Jersey, the price of living is pretty high, so saving money is essential for living!! I’ve been saving my money for as long as I can remember, and I’m finally moving into an apartment with my boo. Although I’m a bit worried about having to pay to live somewhere, I’m pretty lucky in a few aspects, though: my parents and boyfriend are very supportive, and I have a really great job at a finance magazine where I learn A LOT. On the other hand, I have a few monthly bills – in addition to the new ones associated with the apartment – that aren’t going away anytime soon.
The main ones are my student loan, car payment, car insurance, and cell phone. I find that keeping paper statements and receipts helps me organize my monthly budget (but that’s for another post). After paying my bills, the remaining total I can split into savings and an entertainment allowance.
Budgeting yourself isn’t too difficult. Sometimes motivating yourself to do it is the problem. In those cases, keep in mind that you’re doing this to find out how much you can spend on that new handbag you saw at the store… or that new power tool you’ve had your eye on… or an exotic trip away from it all.
Don’t forget: Life isn’t always about saving money. It’s about living comfortably and being happy. There just needs to be a balance.