Step 3: Set your goals. Before you start sifting through the information you’ve tracked, make a list of all the financial goals you want to accomplish in the short_ and long_term. Short_term goals should take no longer than a year to achieve. Long_term goals, such as saving for retirement or your child’s education, may take years to reach. Remember, your goals don’t have to be set in stone, but identifying your priorities before you start planning a budget will help. For example, it may be easier to cut spending if you know your short_term goal is to reduce credit card debt.
Budgeting and saving money doesn't come naturally to many people, for obvious reasons: it's easy and tempting to spend money on non_essentials, even if your budget is tight. So how can you get on track with a realistic budget and save money? These strategies, taken together, have the very real potential to improve your financial situation.