HomeLifestyle & TravelLifestyleHow to budget for savings and spoils in 4 steps

How to budget for savings and spoils in 4 steps

How often do you splurge on a gorgeous pair of shoes or enjoy a fancy dinner at a new restaurant and then feel guilty, because you’ve blown your budget and now you have nothing left for your monthly savings stash? 

With some clever budgeting, you can enjoy the best of both worlds – treating yourself to something special as a reward for all your hard work, while fattening up your piggy bank. 

We’ve got four tips to help you live your best life and post your #TreatYourself selfies while keeping your savings in check…let’s go:

Prioritise your spoils: Take some time to consider what brings you true joy, such as convenience, outings outside your city or fab eateries, and then gradually reduce the amount of money you spend on things that don’t bring you as much pleasure. You should only occasionally treat yourself in a few of these key areas, not in every aspect (or even every day) of your life.

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Try a budgeting app: The goal of using a budgeting app, like Standard Bank’s Budget Manager, is to keep an eye on where your money is going, from current expenses to setting aside funds for future needs. Even though these features may now be conveniently packaged, in many cases the principles behind them are as old as money itself. A quality budgeting app should allow you to round up the change from your purchases and let you manage your savings into individual interest “pockets”, which are just imitations of traditional budgeting approaches like using envelope budgets or spare change jars – some of which can be saved towards your weekly or monthly treats.

Use your discounts and rewards: There may be several activities you want to do, places you wish to visit, or items you want to buy. Before making plans, look for ways – like your bank’s rewards programme – to get discounts and earn rewards points. This way, you can enjoy what you like at a lower price, while also strategically saving for your next “treat” on the list. 

You can have fun, without spending a fortune: From gym memberships and spa treatments, to eating out and holidays, there are budget-friendly versions that fulfil the same needs. Consider a less premium gym or a no-cost workout class; opt for just a facial or massage instead of a full-day spa package; in the place of going out for dinner and drinks with friends, try taking turns hosting themed dinners where you all contribute a dish; think about holidays with no air travel, like camping or day trips from home; and so on. The idea here is to make a big difference with small changes.

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