Creating a budget is the first thing you need to do if you’re struggling to get out of debt or trying to avoid it altogether. When you start eliminating your debt, go one step further and consider a cash only budget. Using a cash only budget can help you get rid of the debt and manage your finances.
Why Should You Use a Cash Only Budget
If you are like me, you’re using credit cards for most of your regular expenses. I like the fact that I can earn points, or maybe you simply don’t like to carry around cash. However, it’s easy to lose sight of the budget and possibly over-extend yourself when paying with credit cards. This is particularly dangerous when you are working to eliminate credit card debt.
With a cash-only budget, you are less likely to overspend. You simply have a predetermined amount of money available; once it’s gone, you’re done being able to spend money. Best of all, this method gives you a tangible look at your budget and forces you to stick with it. While it’s sometimes comforting to use your credit card because you’re not seeing money leave your pocket, a cash only budget is an important visual reminder to be thoughtful when spending money.
How to Create a Cash Only Budget
- First of all, create your budget using this household budgeting worksheet.
- Look for areas where you can cut back on your spending.
- As a result of your budget analysis, determine the monthly expenses you can manage with a cash only budget.
- Groceries, entertainment, dining out and clothing are common areas where a cash only budget is very effective.
- Finally, withdraw enough cash to pay for your budgeted amounts.
- Try the envelope system to be more organized. This way, you can separate the allotted money for each of your budget categories ensuring that cash is used for its intended purpose.
Dig yourself out of debt and start making better financial decisions with some motivation, organization, and cash!
If you’re struggling to pay off debt, ACCC can help. Schedule a free credit counseling session with us today.