Top 10 excuses for not starting a budget

As you read this over 70% of people are living from one payday to the next. So approximately 7 out of 10 of your friends, neighbours, family – or maybe even you – are living a worrying game called: “Can we make it until next payday?”

If you’re not looking at your budget, how can you possibly track where every pound goes in your life? How could you identify areas where you’re overspending and how could you keep control it better? The short and simple answer is… You can’t.

  1. Budgeting is too scary

Budgeting isn’t scary. However, you may be a little shocked when you see what your money has been doing (or not doing) when you finish your first real budget. All those little things you spend your well earned money on does add up; a coffee here, a posh sandwich there…

  1. I’m not good with numbers

Budgeting requires no skill what-so-ever when it comes to numbers. The reason is because budgeting very simple maths. For example:

Penny has 5 apples. She’s hungry and eats 1 apple. How many apples does Penny have left?

If your answer is 4 apples, then breathe a sigh of relief….you have the skills to do a budget.

  1. But when I start a budget, I won’t be able to buy what I want

This is true but buying what you want could mean you end up in a mess you don’t know how to get out of. Better to save for what you want and then buy it.

  1. I don’t have time to do a budget

When you first do a budget, it can take 1-2 hours to create because you have to go through bank statements, past bills, and sitting down with your spouse or housemate to talk about money. The absolute worst case scenario – 2 hours the first month. The next month it will take half the time. The third month, it takes less than 30 minutes. Sooner or later you will find it takes 5-10 mins a month to create a budget. In the great scheme of things, isn’t that time well spent?

  1. My friends and family will think I’m crazy

Isn’t being debt free and in control of your finances a great thing? Once people see this they’ll be curious as to how you’ve managed it and will ask you to share your secret.

  1. I’ll start budgeting after….

We all make false promises to ourselves but delaying anything in life is simply creating an excuse to delay the inevitable that you are never really going to follow through. Start today.

  1. I already do a budget. I keep track of everything in my head

Mortgage, groceries, petrol, utility bills, broadband, car payments, credit cards, childminder costs, gym membership, eating out with friends, student loans, mobile phone contract, coffee, lunch, clothes, haircut, MOT, car repairs, birthdays presents… There is so much to keep a track of.

  1. Budgeting is boring

Well, that’s true. It’s not the most exciting way to spend an evening but you will feel the benefits. Quickly and it will last a long time.

  1. I don’t have any money left to budget

The reason you don’t have money left to budget, is because you aren’t doing a budget. If there is any money coming in, then you have something to budget with. Remember, a budget is simply telling your income where to go instead of wondering where it all went each month.

  1. I don’t have a fancy spreadsheet to do it for me…

Budgeting can be simple and doesn’t need an app, clever technical skills or qualifications. Use whatever method is comfortable for you. That might be a notebook where you write down and review what you’re spending. When you know where your money is going, when and why, you’ll feel in much greater control of it and will start to see you’re saving more each month.