So this week I thought I would share my goals for 2012 with you - one goal each day, until Friday.
Goal One - SAVE MORE MONEY.
Confession(s): We like to eat out. We like to shop.
Translation: We spend too much, and don't save nearly enough.
In 2012, this is changing. We are committed to this change, committed to saving.
Last week, we signed up for Mint.com. This FREE online home accounting software is an amazing tool that allows users to track bank, credit card, investment, and loan transactions and balances through a single website. It also allows you to set budgetary goals!
This website (which is completley safe) connects to your bank accounts and allows you to see every dollar you spend. Mint then categorizes all of your purchases for you allowing you to see your trends are on a monthly basis. This tool is just awesome!
This isn't OUR screenshot, but rather, an example. But let me just tell you, when we saw how much we were actually spending, it hurt... a lot. Our major problem areas were dining, gasoline, and shopping. OUCH!
Mint has a section for budgeting. It can automatically set budgets for categorical spending, but you can go in and manually change things as well.
We can't do much about the gasoline (Hub's current job requires him to travel 80 miles a day), but we can definitely cut back on the dining and shopping. We had to. It was ridiculous.
We sat down and made budgets for each of our spending categories. It is going to be a major change, but I believe we can do it. We made some allowances for ourselves so we don't fail.
Another feature I love about Mint is it allows you to set financial goals. You can set goals to pay off debts, save for vacations, save for an emergency fund, save for a home... almost anything! It's amazing :)
Of course, our goal was to save more money. Our savings account isn't nearly as healthy as it should be, but we have all intentions to fatten it up! :) Yes, this means less going out, more staying in, wearing the same outfits over and over, and taking our lunches to work - but we can do it!
We are very excited about taking steps toward our financial goals. It's going to be a challenge, but it is going to be so worth it a year from now!
What are your goals for 2012? Looking forward to sharing the next goal tomorrow. Talk soon, friends!
**Mint.com did not ask me to talk them up, and they certainly haven't compensated me for this blog post. They don't even know who I am. This isn't saying that I wouldn't accept money if they tried to give it to me - after all, I am trying to save more money :)