budget

Creating New Spending Habits After Shelter-In-Place

Cooking At Home

One of the most desired and, at the same time, hardest-to-do financial tasks is to create a budget and stick to it.

I know this from my personal experience and that of my clients. It is the rare person who enjoys purposefully creating spending limits – because that is what a budget does – it sets limits on spending. These limits are necessary to reach important savings goals like retiring or buying a house, but that doesn’t make them any more comfortable. What if there was an easier way to create new spending habits?

Why not take this rare opportunity to create new spending habits instead of going back to the old?

Admit it- you enjoy cooking more than you thought you did, and you can’t believe how much money you are saving by not eating out as much. You look in your closet and you are dismayed about how many clothes you own and don’t wear – and you don’t think you will need them after you no longer have to shelter-in-place. You’ve enjoyed neighborhood walks and Zoom Zumba classes much more than you ever liked going to the gym. If this is you – take the opportunity to build a new budget around this lifestyle. You don’t have to eliminate all past activities that you once enjoyed, but you may find it much easier to cut back now.

Want to make budgeting more fun? Download The Happiness Spreadsheet, a free tool that helps you create a budget you can live by!

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How To Make Sure You See All the Places On Your Bucket List

Photo Credit: Tom Barrett, Unsplash

Americans love to travel. When I ask my clients what they want more of in their life now and later, the most common answer includes “I want to travel more.” And, many tell me that their travel spending is a non-negotiable expense. This wanderlust grows after retirement as the time constraint that existed while working is gone.

Travel Isn’t Cheap and Priorities Change
But travel isn’t cheap and is something that needs to be planned for especially when the paychecks stop. It doesn’t help that after a certain age, traveling on a budget is not as appealing. We want to enjoy some luxury while on the road, or at the minimum a home-like experience. This means that besides the basics: a clean room, good lighting, and reliable hot running water, we want crisp white sheets, a firm mattress, a fluffy bathrobe, and high-quality toiletries.

Another shift happens as one gets older, the job of planning every detail of a trip – from hotels to meals to excursions gets less appealing, and opting for a group tour (even with the risk of traveling with strangers) becomes more attractive. This type of travel can come at an extra cost.

How sad it would be if a person who loves to travel reaches retirement and realizes that they can’t afford to go to all the places on their bucket list!

So, if you are a person that is continuously daydreaming about where you want to go next, and your bucket list never gets shorter, there is only one answer: make saving for travel a priority.

If you need some help in creating a budget that aligns with the things you most value (like travel), please download a free copy of The Happiness Spreadsheet: How To Create A Life Aligned With Your Values, Beliefs, and Ideals. I think you will find it helpful. Happy traveling!

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Curtis Financial Planning