budgeting tipsA lot of folks have trouble setting out budgets because like any plan, they rarely survive contact with the real world and can be very time-consuming to create. Instead of trying to strictly budget, you can use a plan that was recently featured on the Equifax Finance Blog in the article “

Give Your Budget a PERK,” by Eve Becker.

The PERK plan, developed by Robert Pagilarini of Richer Life, is less of a budget and more of a self-assessment that builds financial awareness and helps

save money. In it, your expenditures are assessed at regular intervals, like once a month when you get your bank statement or credit card bill. Each expenditure is then marked in one of four categories: postpone, eliminate, reduce or keep.

Postpone primarily has to do with purchases that you can or should have waited on, like a new television or other upgrade, to recognize and reduce impulse buys. Eliminate is for expenditures you could skip entirely, like subscriptions and memberships you pay for but don’t use. Reduce is for things you do more often or in greater quantity than you should, like indulging on buying lunch or coffee when you could save by making your own. Finally, keep is for things you can’t or shouldn’t change, like insurance and mortgage payments. Like other lifestyle changes, the PERK plan requires you to regularly use it over time in order for your

personal finances to benefit.

If you are looking for more in-depth budget ideas, insurance advice, tax tips and more, check out the

Equifax Finance Blog.

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