New Versus Used: Budgeting Tips on Buying a Car

New Versus Used: Budgeting Tips on Buying a Car With used cars, it's wise to budget for repairs. While it's possible to walk into a dealership and walk out with a new car, especially if you have the credit, you might want to consider doing some planning to determine how a new or used car will affect your budget. Both carry different costs. "Other than houses, cars are the largest purchases that... Continue reading

Short-Term Budgeting Tips

Getting your household spending under control requires having a spending plan in place -- a budget -- and most important, following the plan as closely as you can. Continue reading

Personal and Household Budget Categories

/*-->*/ /*-->*/ When breaking a budget into categories such as housing, savings, and healthcare, it’s important to consider what budget percentages should be set for each. Continue reading

How to Project Balances and Cash Flow

Projected balances and cash flow Thank you for choosing Quicken! Do you have a have a general idea of where you stand financially? Accompanied by a sinking feeling you’re spending more than you’re taking in? Quicken can help! By understanding how much money comes in and where it all goes—in other words, your cash flow—you can plan realistically and avoid the paycheck-to-paycheck struggle to make... Continue reading
Woman at the ATM learning budgeting

What Do You Learn From Budgeting?

Though the thought of actually making a budget might sound as appealing as having a ball and chain attached to your wallet, it can actually be quite a liberating experience. According to Erin Baehr, a certified financial planner practicing in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, and Chester, New Jersey, "Many people think of budgets as something negative; something constraining or confining. But actually,... Continue reading
Discretionary spending

Household Budget Checklist: Determining Necessary Expenses

Discretionary Spending The items that you don’t really need fall into the category of discretionary spending. Sometimes, the line separating necessary and discretionary spending can become blurred. Is going to the movies a treat or absolutely required to maintain your mental health? You confront these questions when you put together your household budget. Start with the items that you cannot live... Continue reading

Budgeting for Your Peace of Mind

Are your finances keeping you up at night? You’re not alone. Almost three-quarters of adults say money has them feeling stressed, according to the American Psychological Association. That’s not surprising, especially in today’s economy with skyrocketing energy and food costs, tepid investment performance, and rising unemployment rates. The remedy? Tackle that tension with a budget. If the mere... Continue reading
5 questions to ask yourself before starting a budget

5 Questions to Ask Before You Prepare a Budget

Sometimes, when people finally decide to take charge of their finances -- to stop winging it and prepare a budget -- they think of a budget as a restriction, depriving them of the nicer things in life. In reality, it can be liberating to chart a path to financial freedom. Before you start, you need to ask yourself at least five questions. What Are My Goals? How and what you budget depends on the... Continue reading
Breaking bad budgeting habits with Quicken personal finance

Breaking Bad Budgeting Habits

Habits -- Bad Ones A habit is like an ancient decision -- you replay the same behavior that originated from a conscious choice you made in the mists of the past. Now you are on autopilot, repeatedly acting out the same behavior with nary a thought. Habits can be bad or good. Bad budgeting habits often involve spending too much, saving too little, ignoring your budget or failing to track your... Continue reading

How to Save for Long-Term Goals

Whether you're dreaming of sending your kids to college, having a comfortable retirement, or buying a new house or car in several years, you need to save to reach your long-term goals. "Long-term success comes from tying your cash flow to your goals," according to to Eric Roberge, a certified financial planner in Boston who works with young professionals across the country. "Cash flow is... Continue reading