“Welcome to the PlanEasy blog! We make personal finance easy.

Thanks for visiting.”

 

– Owen

Break Bad Spending Habits: Do A No Spend Month

Break Bad Spending Habits: Do A No Spend Month

Habits. They’re both good and bad.

Habits are tough because for the most part they occur subconsciously. You’re not really in control. You may not even realize it’s a habit. You think you’re making the decision but really it’s just habit driving your actions.

When you have a habit, good or bad, you’ve been wired through repetition and rewards to make the same actions over and over. Truthfully you have very little control.

Habits form when a behaviour is repeated often enough to become automatic. There are typically three phases to creating a habit, the cue, the routine, and the reward.

For example, a regular exercise routine is an extremely beneficial habit. Regular exercise can greatly improve your overall health and wellbeing. Getting 75 minutes of exercise each week can extend your lifespan by as much as 4.5 years! (Not to mention you feel so much better!)

Unfortunately, habits can work against you too. Bad habits can form just as easily as good habits.

Bad habits usually form during stressful times, during big life changes, and when you’re bored.

Bad spending habits are super easy to form because there is an immediate reward for spending money. Bad spending habits are also easily formed because there are spending cues all over the place in the form of advertisements.

Bad spending habits can be really detrimental to your financial health. Even a few bad spending habits can cost you $50-$100 per week. Over the course of your lifetime those habits can cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars.

If you think you may have some bad spending habits I’ve got a challenge for you!

Try doing a “no spend challenge” this month. For the next 30 days you shouldn’t spend any money at all. NOTHING!

Doing a no spend month is a great way to reset your spending habits.

read more
Attention Financial Voyeurs! See Our 2018 Family Budget

Attention Financial Voyeurs! See Our 2018 Family Budget

I’m not sure what it is, but I love reading about other peoples’ personal finances.

Maybe it’s because talking about our personal finances is somewhat taboo.

Or maybe it’s because I’m a personal finance geek and I love to see how other people organize their financial life.

Whatever the reason, I love learning about another person’s finances.

Because I know there are other personal finance “voyeurs” our there I thought it would be fun to share a bit myself. In this blog post I’m going to give you a glimpse at my own personal finances and share my family’s budget for 2018.

Three times a year my wife and I sit down and review our financial plan. We go over our investments, our asset allocation, our income and our expenses. We make small changes and tweaks to ensure we stay on track with our overall financial plan. Having a solid budget is an important tool for achieving your financial goals.

So, without further delay, here is my family budget for 2018.

read more
Creating A Budget? Focus On The Big Stuff

Creating A Budget? Focus On The Big Stuff

When creating a budget, it can be very tempting to get into the nitty gritty right off the bat. Don’t fall into this trap!

The majority of our spending is driven by just a couple of things, accidentally focusing on the small stuff can be a real time waster. Even worse, spending too much time on the small stuff can be very frustrating, it could cause you to abandon your budget all together.

When you look at average household spending are certain patterns that emerge. Some budget categories are very small and some are very large. This obviously varies from person to person but in on average the trend is very clear. There are just three budget categories that make up almost 70% of annual spending.

Those three categories are housing, transportation and food.

When you’re trying to balance your budget, it helps to focus on these three categories first.

Why?

Improvements in these three categories will give you the biggest savings for your effort.

These three categories represent the “big stuff”. They make up the majority of your spending. Even a small improvement here can make a big difference to your overall budget.

As a bonus, improvements made in these three categories are easier to maintain. After making a change its typically easier to sustain spending reductions when it’s in housing, transportation and food.

read more
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Owen Winkelmolen

Financial planner, personal finance geek and founder of PlanEasy.

“Welcome to the PlanEasy blog! We make personal finance easy.

Thanks for visiting.”

 

– Owen

Join our online community!

Community members get (free!) access to our budgeting spreadsheet.

C

Break Bad Spending Habits: Do A No Spend Month

Break Bad Spending Habits: Do A No Spend Month

Habits. They’re both good and bad.

Habits are tough because for the most part they occur subconsciously. You’re not really in control. You may not even realize it’s a habit. You think you’re making the decision but really it’s just habit driving your actions.

When you have a habit, good or bad, you’ve been wired through repetition and rewards to make the same actions over and over. Truthfully you have very little control.

Habits form when a behaviour is repeated often enough to become automatic. There are typically three phases to creating a habit, the cue, the routine, and the reward.

For example, a regular exercise routine is an extremely beneficial habit. Regular exercise can greatly improve your overall health and wellbeing. Getting 75 minutes of exercise each week can extend your lifespan by as much as 4.5 years! (Not to mention you feel so much better!)

Unfortunately, habits can work against you too. Bad habits can form just as easily as good habits.

Bad habits usually form during stressful times, during big life changes, and when you’re bored.

Bad spending habits are super easy to form because there is an immediate reward for spending money. Bad spending habits are also easily formed because there are spending cues all over the place in the form of advertisements.

Bad spending habits can be really detrimental to your financial health. Even a few bad spending habits can cost you $50-$100 per week. Over the course of your lifetime those habits can cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars.

If you think you may have some bad spending habits I’ve got a challenge for you!

Try doing a “no spend challenge” this month. For the next 30 days you shouldn’t spend any money at all. NOTHING!

Doing a no spend month is a great way to reset your spending habits.

read more
Attention Financial Voyeurs! See Our 2018 Family Budget

Attention Financial Voyeurs! See Our 2018 Family Budget

I’m not sure what it is, but I love reading about other peoples’ personal finances.

Maybe it’s because talking about our personal finances is somewhat taboo.

Or maybe it’s because I’m a personal finance geek and I love to see how other people organize their financial life.

Whatever the reason, I love learning about another person’s finances.

Because I know there are other personal finance “voyeurs” our there I thought it would be fun to share a bit myself. In this blog post I’m going to give you a glimpse at my own personal finances and share my family’s budget for 2018.

Three times a year my wife and I sit down and review our financial plan. We go over our investments, our asset allocation, our income and our expenses. We make small changes and tweaks to ensure we stay on track with our overall financial plan. Having a solid budget is an important tool for achieving your financial goals.

So, without further delay, here is my family budget for 2018.

read more
Creating A Budget? Focus On The Big Stuff

Creating A Budget? Focus On The Big Stuff

When creating a budget, it can be very tempting to get into the nitty gritty right off the bat. Don’t fall into this trap!

The majority of our spending is driven by just a couple of things, accidentally focusing on the small stuff can be a real time waster. Even worse, spending too much time on the small stuff can be very frustrating, it could cause you to abandon your budget all together.

When you look at average household spending are certain patterns that emerge. Some budget categories are very small and some are very large. This obviously varies from person to person but in on average the trend is very clear. There are just three budget categories that make up almost 70% of annual spending.

Those three categories are housing, transportation and food.

When you’re trying to balance your budget, it helps to focus on these three categories first.

Why?

Improvements in these three categories will give you the biggest savings for your effort.

These three categories represent the “big stuff”. They make up the majority of your spending. Even a small improvement here can make a big difference to your overall budget.

As a bonus, improvements made in these three categories are easier to maintain. After making a change its typically easier to sustain spending reductions when it’s in housing, transportation and food.

read more
Page 3 of 1712345...

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