Budgets are great, they keep you in line and they help you reach the goals that you’ve set for yourself and your family. The thing is, there’s a point when the budget stops being a means to an end and they start dominating your life… and that’s when you start tracking things to the penny. Listen, if you’re going to budget, experts advise that you track everything but I’m going to give you a few reasons why you should track to the dollar and not down to every last cent.
Don’t Budget To the Penny
Key points to keep in mind:
1] If It’s Hard, You’re Less Likely To Keep It Up--
2] That Level of Visibility Not Necessary or Useful--
3] That’s Not The Point--
I would have to say I fall in the middle on this issue. Our monthly bills are fairly stable from month to month which makes for easier planning. But when I first tracked out expenses I found that going to the penny was more appropriate.
Our biggest problem has been not saving what we don't need to spend. (And that issue is very complex and gets into messy family dynamics.) One thing I am trying currently is eliminate access to unused income by no longer keeping checks on hand, and not carry my debit card with me thereby using a cash only method of purchase. I am hoping that this will help eliminate spree spending (for lack of better word).
Only time will tell how this will work. Staying motivated will be the biggest issue but I believe that once I actually see some progress in paying off old debts will help keep us on track. It will definitely be and issue to keep tabs on.