control http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/10385/all en-US Best Money Tips: Control Your Money, Control Your Mind http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-control-your-money-control-your-mind <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-control-your-money-control-your-mind" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/thinking-490313771.jpg" alt="thinking" title="thinking" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some awesome articles on controlling your money and mind, splitting costs with your partner, and life truths you should live by.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://andthenwesaved.com/feel-more-in-control/">Control Your Money, Control Your Mind 12 Tips</a> &mdash; Feel more in control of your life by writing things down and improving your methods. [And Then We Saved]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Splitting-Costs-Relationship-34732275">Drama Free Guide to Splitting Costs with Your SO</a> &mdash; When in a relationship, consider taking turns when paying for things. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/15-essential-life-truths-you-need-live.html">15 Essential Life Truths You Need to Live By</a> &mdash; Remember to find purpose in all that you do and don't take things so personally. [Lifehack]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2014/05/grow-your-career-by-volunteering.html">Grow Your Career by Volunteering</a> &mdash; Volunteering can help you develop your network and fill in unemployment gaps. [Free Money Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://sweatingthebigstuff.com/complain-get-deserve/">How To Complain And Get What You Deserve</a> &mdash; To complain and get what you deserve, getting a little worked up but not being flat out rude can do the trick. [Sweating the Big Stuff]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.marcandangel.com/2014/05/18/9-things-happy-couples-never-think/">9 Things Happy Couples Never Think</a> &mdash; Happy couples never think that the other should change for them. [Marc and Angel Hack Life]</p> <p><a href="http://timemanagementninja.com/2014/05/do-you-have-to-be-crazy-to-reach-your-dreams/">Do You Have to Be Crazy to Reach Your Dreams?</a> &mdash; There may be a difference between being crazy and being enthusiastic. [Time Management Ninja]</p> <p><a href="http://www.dumblittleman.com/2014/05/3-paths-squash-negative-attitude.html">3 Paths to Squash Your Negative Attitude</a> &mdash; If you think your negativity is a byproduct of something, find the underlying meaning. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <p><a href="http://lifehacker.com/whats-the-best-way-to-move-a-desktop-computer-1577758564">What's the Best Way to Move a Desktop Computer?</a> &mdash; When moving a desktop computer, pack it like a manufacturer would. [Lifehacker]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/make-fun-in-the-sun-safe-for-your-family">Make Fun in the Sun Safe For Your Family</a> &mdash; Using sunscreen and checking skin often can keep your family sun safe this summer. [Parenting Squad]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-control-your-money-control-your-mind">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sensible-ways-to-raise-cash-for-a-wedding">Sensible Ways to Raise Cash for a Wedding</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chinese-money-habits-how-my-culture-influences-my-attitudes-toward-money">Chinese Money Habits - How My Culture Influences My Attitudes Toward Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-should-you-say-no-to-those-who-want-to-borrow-money-from-you">When Should You Say No to Those Who Want to Borrow Money from You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ow-do-you-deal-with-family-members-who-are-bad-at-managing-money">How Do You Deal With Family Members Who Are Bad At Managing Money?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/having-a-baby-nine-financial-considerations-for-new-parents">Having a baby? Nine financial considerations for new parents</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips best money tips control mind money Thu, 22 May 2014 09:00:25 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1140157 at http://www.wisebread.com Be In Charge of Your Finances http://www.wisebread.com/be-in-charge-of-your-finances <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/be-in-charge-of-your-finances" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/no-swimming.jpg" alt="No swimming" title="No Swimming" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="186" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Do you ever come to the end of the money before you run out of month? It's easy to conclude that the problem is that you don't earn enough money (or that you spend too much). In fact, the real problem is almost always that your finances are out of control.</p> <p>I don't want this post to turn into a comedy routine with a list of items like, &quot;Your finances might be out of control if you ever use a credit card to pay off another credit card.&quot; Frankly, if your finances are out of control, you already know it (although you may be in denial). Still, here's a short check list:</p> <ul> <li>You don't have an emergency fund.</li> <li>You don't pay off your credit cards every month.</li> <li>You don't know how you'll satisfy your big, high-priority wants (like college for the kids).</li> <li>You worry about the bills (or about money in general).</li> </ul> <p>Taking control of your finances is straightforward. I've written articles about most of the steps, but it occurred to me that I've never really put the whole thing together. So, for those of you who have problems that look like a lack of money (or excess spending), here's how take charge of your finances.</p> <h3>Take control by buying what you want</h3> <p>I've carefully buried a certain word in this sentence, because I'm afraid that the word budget will turn off a lot of readers, and I'd like to ease them past it. There are two reasons that people hesitate to make or follow a budget.</p> <p>The first is that they come to budgets with a sense of guilt. That's crazy. If you'd rather spend money in some other way than what your budget says, don't feel guilty about it: Just change your budget. Your budget is <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-budget-is-not-a-constraint">not a constraint, it's a tool</a> for helping you get what you most want.</p> <p>With that in mind, here are four posts on budgeting:</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/if-budgeting-isnt-fun-youre-doing-it-wrong">If Budgeting Isn't Fun, You're Doing It Wrong</a> is all about creating a budget that lets you buy what you want. It's about figuring out what you really want and making sure you're budgeting for those items. Like I said: If you want other stuff more than the stuff that's in your budget, change your budget.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/refactor-your-budget-categories">Refactor Your Budget Categories</a> is a short piece on how to organize the categories in your budget. If you have a budget that's working for you, you can skip it. But if you're creating a budget from scratch (or if you're not satisfied with the budget you've been using), it has some useful ideas.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-better-way-to-create-a-budget">A Better Way to Create a Budget</a> advises against the usual budgeting advice of filling in each budget item with what you spent last month (or last year). Instead, I suggest, start each line item at zero, then figure out what you really need to spend to satisfy your wants and needs in that category.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/your-budget-envelopes-or-a-plan">Your Budget: Envelopes or a Plan?</a> looks at the two main styles of budgeting. I used to follow the envelope model, where I set aside money from each paycheck to cover each expense category, but some years back I quit thinking of my budget as a set of envelopes and started thinking of it as a plan.</p> <h3>Take control by knowing what you're buying</h3> <p>The second common reason that people resist budgeting is that they feel like they're &quot;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/not-the-sort-of-person-who">not the sort of person</a>&quot; who needs to pays attention to every penny. That's not quite as crazy as feeling guilty when they don't follow a budget. It is possible to manage your finances intuitively, and lots of people do. But it's not a sign of moral superiority.</p> <p>The way to get your finances under control is to create a budget and then track your spending so that you know whether you're following it or not. Neither step has nothing to do with what kind of person you are.</p> <p>I wrote one post on tracking your spending:</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/track-your-spending-or-not">Track Your Spending. Or not.</a> It's on whether the time and effort of tracking is worth the payoff. (And, more important, what the payoff is.)</p> <p>As I say, it is possible to manage your finances without a budget and without tracking to see if you're keeping to your budget. In fact, most people do just that. If your wants and needs are modest relative to your income, that can work fine. But the less daylight there is between what you earn and what you spend, the more you need to be in control of your finances.</p> <p>Who's in charge of your finances? You? Or no one in particular?</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/be-in-charge-of-your-finances">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-quick-tips-for-organizing-your-finances">6 Quick Tips for Organizing Your Finances</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-i-knew-it-benefit-of-expense-tracking">The &quot;I Knew It!&quot; Benefit of Expense Tracking</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/create-your-own-raise">Create Your Own Raise</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/it-takes-a-frugal-spouse-to-make-a-frugal-home">It takes a frugal spouse to make a frugal home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/too-broke-to-be-frugal">Too broke to be frugal?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance control take control tracking spending Fri, 03 Sep 2010 12:00:05 +0000 Philip Brewer 226975 at http://www.wisebread.com It takes a frugal spouse to make a frugal home http://www.wisebread.com/it-takes-a-frugal-spouse-to-make-a-frugal-home <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/it-takes-a-frugal-spouse-to-make-a-frugal-home" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/spouses.jpg" alt="Spouses" title="Spouses" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="203" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Something of an exaggeration, of course&mdash;a one-person household can be very frugal. But there's an underlying truth: A household is only as frugal as its least-frugal member.</p> <p>This is one of the clear messages from the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0671015206?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisbre08-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0671015206"><em>Millionaire Next Door</em></a>. People who answer &quot;yes&quot; to the question, &quot;Is your spouse more frugal than you are?&quot; are enormously more likely to be millionaires than other people.</p> <p>That controlling spending is more important for becoming rich than having a high income is not news. When a rich person insists on haggling over a small sum or on correcting a small error in a bill, ordinary people may say, &quot;I'm surprised someone like you would concern yourself over such a small sum.&quot; The rich person's response, though, is simply, &quot;How do you think someone like me got to be someone like me?&quot;</p> <p>Contrariwise, a non-frugal spouse not only <strong>can</strong> wreck a household's finances&mdash;he or she <strong>will almost certainly do so</strong>, usually without even meaning to.</p> <h2>Structural solutions</h2> <p>I've heard a hundred variations on attempts to produce a structural solution.</p> <p>In the old days it was common for the husband to control the income stream and pay the wife an allowance with which she was to cover the groceries and other household expenses. This sort of structure could work very well if both spouses were frugal&mdash;the frugal wife would economize enough to save some money out of the allowance, producing a nest egg that was separate from the husband's&mdash;but failed badly if the husband wasn't frugal, leaving the household with no savings except the wife's pin money.</p> <p>In more modern times, structural solutions tend to be build around separate accounts&mdash;yours, mine, and (possibly) ours, with a clear understanding of how income goes into the various accounts and which bills are to be paid out of which account. These can work well for people who have a common vision for the household's future&mdash;but then anything can work well for people with a common vision.</p> <p>Many households have just a single pool of money&mdash;all income flows into it, all expenses are paid out of it. This can work fine, too.</p> <p>In fact, in the US at least, all these solutions all amount to the same thing as far as the law is concerned. With some very limited exceptions (mainly having to do with inherited wealth), either spouse is able to incur debts that obligate the entire household. As a practical matter, you have to pay your spouse's credit card bills pretty much without regard to any agreement to the contrary between the two of you. (The only reason the &quot;husband controls everything&quot; scheme ever worked was that creditors were unwilling to extend credit to a wife unless her husband co-signed.)&nbsp; Because of this, structural solutions are only effective to the extent that both spouses use them to restrain <strong>themselves</strong>&mdash;they are of no use at all for restraining a spouse against his or her will.</p> <h2>The structure of the problem</h2> <p>There are, I think, three general categories of non-frugal spousal behavior.</p> <p>The first has to do with <strong>impulse control</strong>. Here's where structural solutions can help. If the situation is that you can agree on a budget, but that one (or both) of you tend to spend money on passing fancies, then a structural solution that puts an obstacle in the path of spending money can provide the time to reconsider and make choices that don't blow the budget. In particular, structural measures can act as a sort of &quot;tripwire&quot; to detect when one spouse has succumbed to poor impulse control, giving the couple a chance to make the necessary adjustments before the household's finances are put at serious risk.</p> <p>The second has to do with having a <strong>shared vision</strong> of the goals of the household. Having a shared vision does not necessarily mean having the same goals. If your big goal is taking a fabulous trip to Paris and your spouse's goal is owning a classic Alfa Romeo, that's still a shared vision&mdash;as long as you both acknowledge the other's goal. In fact, frugality can advance both goals. The problem comes when one spouse rejects or dismisses the other's goals. There is no structural solution to that problem. If one of you thinks that saving money to send the kids to college is important and the other would rather have a higher standard of living, there simply isn't a structural solution&mdash;the less-frugal spouse wins (or rather loses&mdash;along with everyone else in the household).</p> <p>The third, and most fundamental, is simply having a different <strong>understanding of how the world works</strong> with regard to finances. Some people (I dare say most people who read Wise Bread) view saving&mdash;spending less than you earn&mdash;as <strong>the</strong> fundamental choice that enables all the financial successes of the household. Other people, though, don't. (There are many different understandings of how the world works. Some people discount the future heavily&mdash;the &quot;live for today&quot; folks. Other people just assume things will work out&mdash;the &quot;the gods will provide&quot; folks. Still others are just thoughtless and selfish&mdash;the &quot;instant gratification&quot; folks. None of these are invalid&mdash;they're just different. But the difference is one that pretty much excludes any hope of financial success, except through simple good fortune.)</p> <p>So, how can you fix this? What can you do if you have a spouse who does not share your inclination to frugality?</p> <p>To begin with, figure out where the disconnect is. Does your spouse believe that spending less than you earn is the foundation of financial success? Do you have a common vision of your major goals? If the answer to both these questions is yes, then there's a pretty straightforward path to success based on structural solutions. Simply produce a budget that allocates enough money to the less-frugal spouse's priorities while leaving an adequate surplus for saving and investing. If necessary, set up a system of accounts that make it easy to pay for things in line with the budget and difficult to pay for things that aren't in the budget.</p> <p>If the answer to the first question is yes but the answer to the second question is no, then the next step is to negotiate that common understanding. I'm no expert in such matters, but I'd start by identifying a very small number of must-haves&mdash;an emergency fund, retirement savings, college savings for the kids&mdash;and then negotiating a division of the surplus between your goals and your spouse's goals. Some people allocate a certain amount of money that each spouse can spend without consulting the other. Others agree to make joint decisions about major purchases.</p> <p>If the answer to the first question is no, it may be very difficult to come to an arrangement that works&mdash;unless the less-frugal spouse is willing to cede control over the household finances to the other. And this last, I think, is the crux of the matter.</p> <p>All these issues are as much about power and control as they are about anything else. I have seen spouses sabotage their household finances simply to thwart the will of the other partner&mdash;as a concrete expression of the fact that they wield a full measure of the spending capability.</p> <h2>Structure of people</h2> <p>Everybody has their own natural level of frugality and there's not much you can do to change someone else's nature. (Changing your own is tough enough.) Exhortations, appeals to logic (or to dreams for the future), and leading by example all have their place, but only go so far. There is a great deal of room for negotiation when it comes to the household's common goals&mdash;but only a little room for negotiation when it comes to notions of how finances work.</p> <p>One's understanding of the world is learned young.&nbsp; It's learned by watching the early morning cartoons, by listening to songs about hard times, by seeing your friend's parents prosper and move on (or fail to), and by listening to what your parents have to say about their neighbors&mdash;both those who prosper and those who don't.&nbsp; It can also learned by watching and listening to your spouse&mdash;but only so fast, because the things learned young carry a weight that's hard to move.&nbsp;</p> <p>If your spouse doesn't (or you don't) understand that <em>spending less than you earn is the basis for everything else</em>&mdash;comfort, prosperity, security, success&mdash;then you'll only achieve those things through plain blind luck.&nbsp; Those people can spot their peers at the lottery ticket counter in the convenience store.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/it-takes-a-frugal-spouse-to-make-a-frugal-home">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-line-between-frugal-and-crazy">The line between frugal and crazy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/in-times-like-these-separate-the-want-from-the-need">In times like these, separate the want from the need.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-new-normal-economy">The new normal economy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/oprah-asks-a-great-question-what-can-you-live-without">Oprah Asks A Great Question; What Can You Live Without?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chinese-money-habits-how-my-culture-influences-my-attitudes-toward-money">Chinese Money Habits - How My Culture Influences My Attitudes Toward Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Frugal Living budget control credit frugal frugality husband power spouse wife Thu, 02 Apr 2009 14:20:58 +0000 Philip Brewer 3000 at http://www.wisebread.com Too broke to be frugal? http://www.wisebread.com/too-broke-to-be-frugal <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/too-broke-to-be-frugal" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/collapsed-barn.jpg" alt="Collapsed barn" title="Collapsed Barn" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="131" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The first few years after I got out of college my finances were seriously out of control. I was making pretty good money, but I was spending all of it. Worse, I wasn't keeping track, so I didn't even really know whether I was getting ahead or falling behind. During that period I more than once made some seriously unfrugal choices, simply because I didn't have cash on hand.</p> <p>The specific example I'm thinking of is a time I went to a nice restaurant where I could use a credit card, because I didn't have enough cash to go to a cheaper restaurant. (In those days, cheap restaurants often didn't take credit cards.)</p> <p>I knew it was stupid at the time, and I must admit that I did it with a certain amount of conscious irony--the same kind that makes people call a lifestyle based on ever-increasing levels of debt <em>the American way</em>--but I expect that everyone who wasn't born rich has memories of choices like this:</p> <ul> <li>Postponing needed auto or home maintenance, even though they knew it would mean expensive repairs later</li> <li>Missing a chance to stock up at a great price, because they didn't have the cash</li> <li>Paying more for a low deductible on insurance, because they couldn't take the risk of a cheaper high-deductible policy</li> <li>Buying the small package, even though the big package was a better deal</li> <li>Paying more for heat, because they couldn't afford to buy weatherstripping</li> <li>Dropping out of school, because they couldn't afford tuition</li> <li>Missing out on decades of investment returns, because they couldn't afford to fund their 401(k)</li> <li>Or, as in my case, paying more to buy something from someone who would offer credit, because the best deal required cash they didn't have.</li> </ul> <p>I would argue, though, that the underlying problem isn't being broke. The underlying problem is having out-of-control finances.</p> <p>Although it's true that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/on-the-importance-of-having-capital">a little capital</a> can make frugal choices a lot easier, the fact is that most of these problems don't stem from being broke. If you can't pay for weatherstripping, how are you going to pay the heating bill? If you can't afford an extra can of tomato paste at 39 cents today, how are you going to afford one next week at 49 cents?</p> <p>The right way to address this sort of issue is not to hope for a magical injection of extra money, but rather to take control of your finances. Start with the basics, like creating a budget and tracking your spending. (Here's some tips on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-better-way-to-create-a-budget">creating a budget</a>, on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/refactor-your-budget-categories">choosing budget categories</a>, and on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/track-your-spending-or-not">tracking spending</a>.)</p> <p>Once your finances are under control, many of these expensive problems simply solve themselves. If you have a grocery budget--no matter how small--you can allocate the money to take advantage of sales and buy the package that offers the best deal. If you have a utility budget, you can make a smart decision about weatherstripping. Once you're spending less than you take in, you can quickly build up a small emergency fund--and once you have that you can start increasing your deductible to save money on insurance.</p> <p>The point is not that having a little capital leads to cost savings (although it does), the point is that having your finances under control leads to having a little capital.</p> <p>It's true that it's tougher to be frugal when you're broke, but the way out is to take control of your finances.<br /> &nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/too-broke-to-be-frugal">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-simple-ways-to-waste-money">47 Simple Ways To Waste Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-s-your-budget-personality">What’s Your Budget Personality?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/simplify-budgeting-with-personal-money">Simplify budgeting with personal money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-staying-on-budget-can-be-fun-really">9 Ways Staying on Budget Can Be Fun (Really!)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/start-with-recurring-monthly-expenses">Start with recurring monthly expenses</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Budgeting budget budgeting control finances personal finances spending spending control track Tue, 03 Feb 2009 14:31:46 +0000 Philip Brewer 2807 at http://www.wisebread.com