As a single mom and a student I need to really budget my money.. Like most people, I really hate doing this. There is nothing fun about seeing where all your money has gone specially when it’s just bills and food. But it has to be done. When I first started trying to take control of my finances I tried quite a few apps (iOS), tested a few budgeting sites, read like 100 blogs (that might be an exaggeration), and tried old fashioned methods (like cash only and writing down EVERY transaction)..
Out of all of this only two things have really stuck with me on my journey to getting control over my financial situation and getting rid of thousands of dollars in debt. I’ll share those here and I’ll be skipping all the stuff that didn’t work for me so this is not an all inclusive list. And both things are completely free, so keep readin ^^
First off, the absolute best thing I read about personal finance was from the blog The Simple Dollar This blog has a plethora of good advice about saving money and living within your means. It has changes a bit since I first started reading it but it looks like he consolidated all the good stuff in a free downloadable book. And even better, if you don’t feel like reading a whole book, the basic and most important things you need to know are on the very first page. So I highly recommend at least reading that. I really do not think I would be where I am financially today if it were not for this blog. I cannot express enough about how much it has helped me..
Second, Mint is an A-M-A-Z-I-N-G website (also has an iOS and Android app). I’m lazy. I don’t care to write down every little transaction I make and then add them all up at night or log them into an excel document. I don’t know who would want to do that and if I did I would probably think they were a little insane.. Anyways, I’m digressing here.. Back to the point: Mint.com is a personal finance site where you link all your accounts into one place. No more logging into all of your collection of bank, credit card, and savings accounts and keeping track of them separately. Mint will show you your total assets and total debt in one place. The best thing about Mint (IMO) is that it categorizes all your transactions for you. Like say if you buy something from a grocery store it will be categorized as groceries automatically. Now this isn’t flawless, specially if you buy a bunch of different things in one transaction, but it still makes things a hell of a lot easier. Also you can set goals and Mint will keep track of them. It’s so nice seeing the progress you’re making and it’s really good motivation as well. You.will.love.this.program. At least if you’re anything like me you will. Maybe you’re one of those crazy people I mentioned earlier.. 😛 Well that’s all for now.
Thanks for reading 🙂 I hope you found this post helpful even though it’s nothing original 😛