A budget is the best way to see where your money is used.

We use and recommend YNAB. For us it has been the best way to plan with a budget.

We can see  by recording every purchase and accounting for every dollar just  what we are doing.

We can see where  spend , where we save, and we have found that a twice a month review together has been so helpful.

You see, my income varies every month.  We may plug in amounts and then find on a bad month that our income doesn’t agree

with our plan.  So we adjust our outlook and plan our month for the lower end of my likely income. Then if  we see an increase, we have a choice

to either save, or perhaps apply it to use for what was waiting for  a way to be funded. See the planning effect?

YNAB allows you to input info right from your bank. We have chosen NOT to do that. I prefer to enter each transaction as it comes from

our checking account. This keeps us aware of what we are spending and when I record an expenditure I have to apply it to the category that

we  chose to fund that expense from.

Another way that applies: When I am about to make a purchase, I 1st think about what the  budget has available in that category.  Like if my

Garden budget  has 18 dollars left in it. I know that I can’t go out and buy 5 bags of topsoil unless they are about 3 bucks each. But if  it is

5  dollars each, then I need to revise my plan to stay in budget.

With the discipline  and  increasing in the habits of proper planning  we can accomplish more, get along better, and be better stewards of what we have.


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