February is starting which means your trial month of 2016 is officially over. So it’s time to get serious about your new years resolutions. Your Christmas money is probably all spent and you’ve started your year the same way you always do, living from paycheck to paycheck, counting down the last days of the month. With the 50/20/30 method you will be able to budget your money. Whether you’re in college, have a full time job or have just started to earn money: the great thing about this rule is that it applies to every budget and helps you gain control of your money.
50 – “Your needs”
First and foremost about 50% of your paycheck goes to the essential things you need in your life. Your “needs” are things like your rent, your car, your public transport card, utilities and groceries. These are payments that don’t vary much and things you know you have to pay every single month, whether you want to or not.
20 – “Your savings”
This one sounds hard but 20% of your income each month should go directly into savings. The money you save will be beneficial for your retirement contributions or to pay off debts you might have like college or car loans. Put the money in a different bank account, so you don’t even think about spending it on anything else.
30 – “Your wants”
Now for the fun part! 30% of your monthly payment can be used for the things you love to do and the things you “want” in your life. As long as you’ve taken care of the first two steps, this one is completely up to you. You can spend it on your hobbies, eating out, shopping or your monthly Netflix subscription. It can be tempting to spend more than 30% on your “wants” but try to honest and strict with yourself and don’t even start to cheat.
By Hannah Lutterbach
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