Caregivers: You are welcome to call the Military Caregiver Hotline – (888) 503-1168. Lines are open and available 8 am to 6 pm, Mon-Fri, EDT.

advice-family-createfirstbudget-caregiver Is it important to have a budget? What are the benefits of having one? I struggled with creating a budget and saving for a rainy day for quite some time. There are many changes that occur – from military retirement to separation from active duty – that force changes in income.  Saving and budgeting can be very difficult tasks, however are very important!

As military caregivers, our financial challenges are unique, and are usually the result of the change in our lives that cause devastating and long-lasting impacts to our careers and financial security. As we face the monumental changes in our lives and the increase in demands on our time and energy, we are challenged with finding time to manage our financial concerns. Most of us are overwhelmed by the prospect of trying to take over the entire household finances at a time when we have had so many devastating disruptions in our lives.  Many of us have been dealt a devastating blow that has in one way or another affected the outlook of our financial futures.

However a Military Caregiver Financial Hotline has been designed to help all caregivers with their budget needs, from creating a budget to maintaining a financial plan that your family already has in place. Experts are readily available to provide caregivers with all their budgetary needs, from the novice to the seasoned.  You can read more from my first blog post here. It tells about the experts that are ready to help, and the specific details for any military caregiver that calls in.

I highly recommend that all caregivers use the Military Caregiver Financial Hotline to gain helpful guidance on their financial needs, whatever they are. Those who do will feel much relief and a sense of security as they gain control over their financial future!

 Part Two: Expert Tips on How to Budget & Save!

dollar sign

Step One: Make a List. Track the money you have coming in. Then, write down what you spend for everything, being very careful not to leave anything out!

Step Two: Determine Needs vs. Wants. Look through expenses that you listed. Identify what can be cut back or cut out completely. Do you need 183 cable channels? If you’re married, talk it over with your spouse. In my house, it is an intense discussion to mention cutting the cable bill, so … be sure to seek agreement with your spouse!

Step Three: Pay yourself first! Experts say to save 15 – 20% of the money you bring in for short-term or long-term goals.  I have also heard it said to put all extra money that you make toward savings— that is, if there is no debt that needs to be satisfied first!

Step Four: Bring in extra cash. Have you ever tried using the websites that buy back designer bags or clothing? Have you looked through your closets and taken some of your older items to consignment stores for resale? Think in terms of entrepreneurial ideas—Pinterest? EBay? You can turn your knitting or sewing or other skills into extra cash if you think creatively! And then – save it!

dollar-currency-money-us-dollar

Step Five: Check in. Update your budget regularly. Evaluate and assess on a regular basis for any changes that may have occurred over time, and then make adjustments on your budget!

CAREGIVERS: Remember to call into the Military Caregiver Hotline–(888) 503-1168. Lines are open and available 8 am to 6 pm, Monday through Friday, EDT.

Military caregivers, this helpful resource is for you!! Let’s use it and make some positive strides for our future! Please share! Feel free to leave comments below of any other advice you may wish to share about budgeting and saving!

Get my latest blog posts emailed directly to your inbox! Two quick steps to join: 1) complete fields below; 2) check your email and click confirm!

It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedIn