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Have a “No Splurge Month”

Presented By: EJ Cooksey | Monday, August 09, 2010 | , , , , | Comments

Do you need to save some money for a big purchase or recover from a large bill you just paid? Perhaps you just want to gain better control of your spending. Having a "No Splurge Month" could be the answer for you.

A “No Splurge Month” is when you designate a month where you won't spend any money on anything that isn't absolutely essential. There is no spending money on anything you don't legitimately need. When done as a family, this is a great way to save some money and learn more about what you can really live without.

Before you decide to stop spending unnecessary money, you will have to make a plan. Otherwise, old habits will probably take over and your "No Splurge Month" can easily be derailed.

First of all, pick a month that will realistically work for you and your family to not splurge. You'll probably want to avoid months where you are celebrating a major holiday or taking a vacation. Also, plan it for a month when you won't have unexpected genuine needs, like when the kids go back to school.

When you have your month selected, plan how you will handle specific situations that will arise during that month. For example, if there is a child's birthday party in the month you're deciding not to splurge, decide ahead of time how you will handle that. That will help you stick to your no-splurging plan.

It might also help for you to set a budget for the month. That will help you stay focused in your spending. You may want to put away your credit cards during this time too. Having your credit cards close at hand makes it each to follow to urge to splurge when it strikes.

In your planning, be realistic. Acknowledge that unexpected yet legitimate expenses may arise, no matter how well you plan. You may want to set aside a certain amount cash to cover those. You can still keep costs down by putting only a small amount of money aside, and any surprise expenses have to come from that amount.

Before you start your "No Splurge Month" it's essential to talk about it as a family. With everyone on board, it will be easier to avoid needless spending. Decide as a family what you are allowed to spend money on. This may be a good time to talk about the difference between needs and wants. If you explain to everyone what you're doing, and the purpose behind it, they will be more helpful and not ask for things that you haven't agreed on beforehand. Kids may even view a "No Splurge Month" as a fun challenge and hold you accountable for your own spending.

Having a "No Splurge Month" is a great way to get spending under control and find out what you really can live without. By planning ahead and involving the whole family, it can be a success for everyone involved.

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