It's true that there are more interesting activities than making a budget, but the peace of mind it will give you is well worth the effort.
It's easy to forget all the expenses that come out of everyday life: it's easy to think of rent and insurance, but do you have savings to cover Christmas gifts and back to school? These are just 2 examples among many that come to give us headaches when they were not foreseen.
The fact of writing down all our expenses in black and white allows us to properly assess their relevance and to balance the savings to be made according to the outgoings of money. If we add a dream or a project, the budget really becomes a must that will allow us to realize the feasibility of our desires.
The person who has more ease in managing cash and for whom the management of several bank accounts is complicated can resort to the method of our ancestors, that of separate envelopes which consists in setting aside each month (or each pay) the money intended for the invoices in as many separate envelopes. Thus, we will have an envelope for rent, groceries, insurance, but also gifts, leisure, books, travel, etc. Of course, you have tohave a great control over oneself to avoid going to dip into it for other "emergencies" or even for current expenses, otherwise the exercise is useless.
A person who tends to spend the money available immediately has the advantage of working with bank accounts by automatically transferring a sum to one or more accounts. The fact of operating by direct debits on fixed dates to pay your bills is also a good way to provide the necessary funds and to spread them throughout the month. Do not hesitate to ask that the date of a payment be fixed in a more "quiet" period of the month compared to the beginning of the month when expenses multiply.
Your budget can be daily, weekly or monthly. The more detailed the process, the more accurate your financial portrait will be. If you have a job and your salary is paid to you every two weeks, it might be easier for you to budget based on your pay period.
To get started, write down all of your income: salary, child tax benefits, child support, tax return, etc. In another column, write down all the expenses starting with those whose cost is fixed such as rent, electricity, telephone, insurance, etc. Then comes the delicate task of evaluating expenses, the amount of which varies according to the week or month in which they are incurred. For example, the grocery store. We have to averagerealistically about what we spend on food, bearing in mind that in summer, with the abundance of fresh produce, we pay less each week than during the cold season when food comes to comfort our bodies and despair our wallets! The same goes for clothing which often requires massive spending at certain times of the year and not much at certain others.
back to school is one of those times of the year when money comes out faster than it comes in! Beware of those who have not been far-sighted, the bill is spicy! There are perishable school effects (pencils, stationery, etc.), compulsory notebooks, books, school bag and lunch box, daycare, clothes, haircuts… Some schools require a 2nd pair of indoor shoes, others ask for a contribution of several tens of dollars for school and extracurricular activities, not to mention that son may also want to participate in a sports or cultural activity during his spare time! Oh yes! It is also necessary to calculate the additional cost of lunches whether they are taken in the school cafeteria or in a lunch box. Phew!
We also need to plan for the longer term: the family trip promised since always, the renovations on the house and especially the children's higher education which will come soon enough. When you know that in 20 years, it will cost more than $100,000 to complete university studies, you understand that you have to plan for this expense as quickly as possible.possible.
An education savings plan (RESP) is the ideal vehicle for accumulating savings tax-free while benefiting from a significant federal grant. Since 1998, the Government of Canada has provided a grant through the Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG) program.
The Quebec Education Savings Incentive (QESI) has been in effect since February 21, 2007. This part of the Quebec government makes it possible to add 10 % of net contributions paid in the year, up to $250.
- The ACEF offer courses on how to make a family budget and better organize your personal finances, as well as individual meetings to get information or to be advised during a difficult personal financial situation. For a list of ACEFs in your area, go to the Quebec Consumer Protection Network website and click on Associations. By clicking on Tool, then Budget, you will be directed to an interactive calculator that will allow you to realistically assess your expenses. You can repeat as many times as you want, until you are satisfied with the results. In addition, we also offer you calculation pages for personal loans and costs related to the purchase of a home.
- The Canadian Bankers Association has published the document Knowing how to manage your money thatyou can download for free. Expenses, income, credit, credit score, everything is clearly explained there, with calculation tables.
- Each week, most people spend a fair amount of money on little things that they can't even remember at the end of the week. The "calculator" offered by Industry Canada is intended to demonstrate the effect of saving this money instead of spending it.
- How to make a budget yourself using Excel software? On this site you will find templates to create your own budget according to your needs. A great way to track your finances and stay in control!
- BudgetExpress, from Consumers Union is one of the software available in the market. The budget creation wizard easily helps you build your user profile and identify your income and expenses. Comparative actual budget/planned budget, calendar presenting in a visual and familiar way the staggering of your income and expenses. Special price of $10, call 514-521-6820 or 1-888-521-6820 or write to l'Union des consommateurs. It is possible to upload a free demo version.
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