Budget Tips for 2021

Posted on December 28, 2020

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Each year you start out with intentions of spending less and saving more, but by the time the holidays roll around you realize you didn’t save as much as you planned. With a more strategic plan in mind, you’ll be set for success with an easy-to-follow budget for 2021.

Understand your current existing expenses

You might think you’re spending $300 a month on groceries but without accurate figures, how do you know how much you’re really spending? Look over the last three months of your account history and see what you’re actually spending on items like groceries, carry out, and streaming services. Track your expenses the easy way with Money Management in Online Banking.

Identify your savings goals for the year

Setting a goal for how much you’d like to save by the end of the year can help you determine how much you need to save each month. For example, if you want a balance of $6,000 you need to save $500 a month. If your budget only allows you to save $300, then you need to make some adjustments.

Factor in expenses that don’t pop up monthly

You can count on regular monthly expenses like your rent, car payment, and cellphone. It’s the surprise items like car repairs or a busted water heater that can get you off track. Put aside a small amount each month in an emergency fund account that can be used for those unexpected expenses.

Don’t allocate every last dollar of your paycheck

Some people like to know in advance where every penny of their budget is going for the month, but try to be a little flexible. If you bring home $2,300, try working out your budget for $2,200 or $2,250. That way, if your college roommate drops by for a visit, you’ll have a little for extra groceries.

Make 2021 the year you take control of your finances. Log in to Online Banking and click the Manage Money tab to get started and learn more about establishing a budget.