Make a monthly budget that works for your family

Americans today exist in precarious financial situations. CNBC Money reports that 49% of Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck, meaning they spend every dime of their monthly income with little left for saving. In fact, Americans save so little that 61% of us have not saved enough in an emergency fund to cover at least six months of necessary expenses.

Learning how to make a monthly budget and taking advantage of these five budgeting tools will help you avoid financial stress and save for emergencies.

  1. Monthly Budget Using Spreadsheets – Although there are many more automated budgeting tools available today than there were even just a handful of years ago, the old-fashioned spreadsheet still works wonders. It gives you complete control of tracking expenses and setting spending limits and savings goals. Both  Microsoft Excel and Google Document monthly budget templates are a good place to start.
  2. Use Calendar Alerts to Stay on Your Monthly Budget – With everything daily life brings work, meetings, soccer practices, social events, and packing lunches, remembering to pay all the bills can sometimes seem impossible. Make sure you never waste another cent on a late fee by asking an electronic calendar (this one from Google works well) to remind you. Set an alarm clock for your bills by scheduling alerts for payments you make regularly.


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