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For those who hate the idea of budgeting, having to prepare a detailed budget and practicing the act of budgeting can be a dreadful task. Preparing a budget helps you ensure that all of your expenses are covered and accounted for, and helps you keep track of how much you are spending and saving each month. Because there are various ways to go about budgeting, you have to find a solution that works best for your situation, which can include things like excel spreadsheets, handwritten sheets, detailed line items, and other budgeting formats.   

The different types of budgets and techniques is what makes you want to further explore budgeting and find your unique format that works perfectly for you. We are going to introduce you to a technique specifically designed for those that hate budgeting, but still need it! This technique is known as, “the anti-budget” in which it does not have a detailed line item budget, it doesn’t break down into several specific categories, but it does implement the use of a spreadsheet to help you account for all your monthly expenses.   

Once you get this budgeting technique down, you’ll slowly begin to realize that  budgeting isn’t so bad after all!

Take home pay – savings – expenses + debt payments = spending money

In order to utilize this method to its fullest, we would suggest the following:

  • You want to figure out how much you will need to have for your bills and set those payments up with an automatic withdrawal.

  • You want to set a savings rate or amount for yourself. Depending on the amount of your checks, if you can afford to put aside 10-20% all while meeting your other obligations, then do just that. Have this savings percentage deposited automatically into your savings each time you get paid, and the most important thing to remember is—DON’T TOUCH IT!    

Once these major bills are taken care of, feel free to spend or save the remainder of your money as you please. Because there may be money left over, adding it to your savings isn’t a bad idea.

One thing to take caution of, if you are an over spender or your expenses are higher than your income, this strategy may not work as well for you. If this is you, take a different approach to develop a more structured budgeting format based upon your spending habits.  

Here’s a recap on the do’s and don’ts of practicing a successful anti-budget:

DO make sure you put aside a savings. Calculate how much you will need to put aside to cover your expenses and additional payments each month, and then from there, put aside a percentage to save from the remaining amount.        

DO set up automatic payments to allow your bills to be paid on time and eliminate stress and worry from yourself, so you are able to focus on other money matters.

DON’T begin to practice the anti-budget format without analyzing how it will benefit your current money situation.  

DON’T attempt the “anti-budgeting” strategy without first addressing any money issues you may currently have, specifically your cash flow. If you know that your outflow is greater than your inflow, trying a more detailed approach first may be the best solution.  

DO remember the formula: Take home pay – savings – expenses + debt payments = spending money

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