Come one, come all, and let’s whip out our excel spreadsheets, calculators, bank statements, pen, and paper. We’re talking about budgeting. What are the two main components to budgeting? Income and Expenses
Expenses are, as you guys might have known already, the money you spend. These expenses can be categorized into 3 types of expenses; fixed, periodic, and flexible
Fixed Expenses are expenses that you gotta pay every month. This could mean things like…
- Car insurance
- Cell phone
- Debt/Credit Cards
That last one’s a big deal ladies and gentlemen, SAVINGS. Yeah, you know, paying for things like your car or that bag of chips Alicia got for you last week (IOU) is important, but we don’t often think about savings as an expense when we really should. Even if you’re more broke than my sister’s iPhone screen, that change in mentality might help you pinch a few extra pennies.
Periodic Expenses are those things that happen every now and again that you might need to cover. These could be… birthdays/holidays, tuition, vacation, car maintenance, etc…
Wait a minute though. Just because they don’t occur as often as your fixed expenses, doesn’t mean that they’re not important. They’ll rock your world if you don’t see them coming, especially if you are living paycheck to paycheck. Plan for them. Make a savings account for each one. You’ll be glad that it’s there when you need it.
Flexible Expenses are as you might expect, things that are on your budget that can be modified such as… eating out, socializing, entertainment, hobbies, etc…
These expenses can be kinda spontaneous, which can really eat away at your savings. Even though it may feel like they come out of the blue, you can always plan ahead for them in your budget. Flexible expenses are also the areas where you have the most to gain since these are the easiest to reduce spending.
Remember, if you have to make cuts in your flexible expenses, they’re temporary. You won’t have to live off of ramen forever. Love dining out? Go out with your friend or significant other and share a meal. We live in Texas, which means Texas sized meals. If you’re trying to treat yourself, then you can actually get that desert afterwards. Also, maybe grab lunch instead of dinner. You’re less likely to get an alcoholic beverage with your meal and sometimes there are lunch specials.
Is your budget still negative? Have some extra time on your hands? Consider a side hustle.
- Supplemental Instruction Leader (Alicia is an SI and she loves it! They get paid $15/hr.)
- Apps Tester
- Online tutoring
- Favor, Lyft, Uber
- SXSW Events- The A-List Staffing Agency
Still wondering how you’re going to pay for tuition and textbooks? Our advice is to look into scholarships.
Attend our Finding the Money workshop! Did you know ACC has a general scholarship application? This workshop truly helps with the anxiety of applying for scholarships. The next workshop is Saturday, February 22, 10 a.m.- 12 p.m. @ Highland Campus. Register today, ease that stress, and get that $ money $.