Why family and personal budgets fail title

Why household and family budgets fail

Most attempts to follow a family or personal budget fail. Despite all of the best intentions a household budget is forgotten after the first weeks or months after you first started it. Why does this happen? What can you do to make sure that this doesn't happen to you? After all, if you are able to create and follow a personal budget, you can reach those financial goals that you set for yourself and your family. You have control of your financial life!

Budgeting is a process that involves creating spending and savings levels while living within the means of your income level. You obviously don't want to spend more than you make. You also don't want to spend the same amount that you make because you are not setting aside anything for your future by saving.

The main reason a budget fails is because a budget imposes a discipline upon your lifestyle.

In most cases the results have negative connotations. It may feel restrictive. Gone are the days of stopping into the coffee shop on the way to work for a $3 coffee or going out to dinner when you don't feel like cooking.

Don't look at these budget "restrictions" as painful

What you need to do is view these budgeting pains as pleasure because you are following a plan that is allowing you to get control of your life and reach your financial goals. Each time you don't go to Starbuck's for that cup of coffee, you are one step closer to owning that dream house, saving for your children's college or having a comfortable retirement.

Other reasons that family and personal budgets fail are:

  1. Failing to track the money you spend. Write down what you are spending your money on. If you have online banking, you can download your bank activity into popular money management programs like Quicken and Money.
  2. Using your credit cards. This is a huge budget buster, because it is allows you not to face the reality of your overspending. Use cash or a debit card for all purchases whenever you can.
  3. Your recurring bills are too high. Bills such as magazine subscriptions, cell phones, cable TV and the like can add up to amount. On their own they may not seem like much, but when you add them all up, this could be in the thousands of dollars a year!
  4. Trying to keep up with the Jones's. If you find yourself spending money on things that you don't need, just to keep up with friends and neighbors you aren't doing yourself any favors. And very likely you've blown your budget that you set for yourself. Don't let your own ego get in the way of securing a strong financial foundation for yourself and your family.
  5. Failure to customize your budget. Everyone is different and trying to force your life into a generic budget is going to lead to failure. Sit down and work out a realistic budget that anticipates your unique needs.

Creating and sticking to a family and personal budget is the cornerstone to saving and securing a sound financial future. Remember that the main reason a budget fails is the attitude that restricting your spending is painful. Turn that feeling around and realize that your spending restrictions are leading to your success. Don't allow your budget to fail by forgetting this key concept!

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