Budgeting tips?

I’m a mess financially and am trying to budget but I can’t get it done. Has any tried Mvelopes or John Cummuta’s budgeting programs? Or has anyone used a budgeting program that helped? Thanks.

I love Mvelopes…. But there is a learning curve – it took me a while to learn how to do it. I also use a Google Spreadsheet.

I have a question, I have tried for years to get my finances under control. I handle them now for both hubby and me. I am not that great at it. I have a hard time deciding what we have, how much we will have in 5 months, etc. What to pay, how much to pay other than the absolute amount, planning for emergencies.. etc.. As you can see I am horrible at it. My hubby is in med school and our first child is on the way. I am hoping that someone has ideas. I have tried Microsoft money for tracking but I fall down on it. I even have the matching program on my palm. I can’t figure out why I fall down on it… Any ideas….Help please

It’s rather expensive for someone who is really strapped for money? It’s a good program and all, but I wouldn’t be able to afford it.

I also take care of the finances at my house, and I’ve discovered that all that tracking software doesn’t work for me at all, so these are totally low tech suggestions:

  • I called every bill I had (credit cards, utilities, whatever) and asked them all if I could change the due date of the bill to the 1st of the month. This was convenient based on my paycheck schedule, so just choose a date that works for you and see if anyone can be flexible.
  • Gather everything together about a week before that bill due date and list what you have, and then what you owe to bills, and what you’ll need for food, gas, etc. (and hopefully what you can put towards savings).
  • The only thing I do online is checking my checking account to see which checks have gone through, so I know the bank and I agree.
  • I also balance my checkbook immediately, and subtract every check right away, to avoid the possibility of bouncing checks.
  • If your employer does direct deposit, see if you can put a certain amount automatically towards savings every month.

See if any of that works! Good luck!

It runs me about $2 or $3 per paycheck. So, I didn’t think it was too horrid – I just set aside that much each payday. I suppose it is all in how much convenience it offers as opposed to the cost.

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