I learned from them how important it is to stay at least a month ahead on bills, I am used to always saving up in advance for my next month’s expenses even if it means that I have to make some financial adjustments for the time being.
Being a month ahead on bills simply means that you don’t have to wait for your next paycheck before you can pay for your groceries, gas, and utilities. These things are very important and can never wait, which is why you should always have an amount equivalent to your next month’s expenses already saved up in your bank account.
If you’ve been struggling to stay ahead on your bills, here are a few ways that can help.
1. DETERMINE THE AMOUNT TO SAVE
It is very important that you need to get ahead on your finances. You need to calculate the actual amount that’s required to be saved. This amount should be more than or equal to the total of your one month’s expenses – groceries, utilities, rent, car fuel, gas expenses, or anything that forms a part of your budget. Save it on your savings account or you can do old school just using any type of jar where you can put aside your budget for next month. Make sure to keep a track of all your savings so that you don’t end up shaking your budget. An alternate option is to live on the previous month’s salary while leaving the current one untouched.
2. KEEP THE UNEXPECTED
This is one of the practices I do, I save up any extra or unexpected income received during the month. I keep track and keep an account of all the incoming money and it helps me in managing my finances. This includes your yearly bonus, tax refunds, or any extra paycheck. Don’t take your bonuses and tax refunds as an opportunity to spend on extravagance or things you don’t need. Although we have to reward ourselves for the hard work and the efforts we made, you don’t have to spend too much on those things that are not needed.
3. SAVE ON ELECTRICITY
If you think about it, staying a month ahead on your bills is not that hard if your overall monthly bills could be reduced. Always keep on tracking down every little expense and think of the ways in which you can reduce your current monthly expenses. Reduce your electricity bills. Switch off the unused items and manage the temperature of your thermostat every now and then to cut your electricity bill. Similarly, you can reduce your food budget by opting for a home-cooked meal rather than eating out. Also, using leftovers of the day to prepare your next meal and doing weekly meal planning can easily save you a few extra dollars per month.
4. EARN EXTRA CASH
Turn your passion into a money-making gig by doing a side hustle in your free time. With various freelancing websites offering a platform to earn money by doing what you love, you can work from the comfort of your couch at the hours that are suitable for you. You can choose from the job options that are being offered, you can be a tutor, online or offline, virtual assistant, and many more. Don’t waste your free time, make money on it.
5. AVOID GETTING INTO DEBT
Being in debt is a dreadful situation and often means more than a monetary obligation. It leaves you barely sleeping peacefully until it’s completely repaid and you can’t save any money when you know that you are buried in loans. Moreover, the monthly interest obligation will eat up a big chunk of your paycheck leaving you with little money to put in your savings account.
6. HOUSEHOLD BUDGETING
Having a household budget is having a great impact on staying ahead of your bills because you plan ahead of time and determine where your money should go each month. It is important for your family’s financial status as it acts as a road map toward long-term financial success. A solid budget will always keep you on track by helping you manage your expenses and income.
Saving up in advance is extremely simple if done while keeping your financial goals in focus. Who does not want to live a financially healthy and stress-free life?