You suggested that I set up a budget. Can you tell me how to get started?
A budget is the perfect companion to your credit repair program. Many poor financial decisions are made simply because of a lack of information. Think of a budget as a process of gathering information. The more you know about your own finances, especially your monthly obligations, the less likely you are to commit to a purchase that will strain your budget. Once your budget becomes strained you are at risk of falling behind on your bills and harming your valuable credit repair progress.
Getting a budget started is simple. I suggest that you clear off your desk or kitchen table, get a pad of paper and a pen and list all of your expenses. You might want to have a couple of months of bank statements and credit card bills handy to help bring to mind all of the things you spend money on. It is important to include everything regardless of the size. Even your daily lunch money should be on the list. Little things add up.
Make the Math Work
Once you have everything listed calculate your monthly total. Compare your monthly expenses with your take home pay. If there is a shortage you will need to make adjustments. It is possible to live on more than you are earning by using credit, but eventually you will be unable to keep up and your credit repair results will suffer.
Find Ways to Get in Balance
To adjust your expenses, examine each category of expense. Explore ways to cut costs. I suggest that you keep an open mind. Balancing your budget does not mean that you need to start an austerity plan. You may find many areas to reduce spending without cutting the quality of your life. Be creative. There may be also opportunities to refinance some debts. Even if you cannot do this today, as your credit repair program matures your scores should improve enough to qualify for lower cost financing.