Half-yearly Budget Check and How to Fix It

Setting a budget or financial resolutions is the first step to achieve our financial goals. Executing our plan is the next. But the most crucial of all is to do a followup. Checking where our finances stand gives us a reality check. Are they in line with our long-term goals?

We have crossed the half-year mark on the calendar. It’s time to do a half-yearly budget check of our finances–to note what we have accomplished or where we lag behind and make necessary changes accordingly. This whole affair of rummaging through your bank statements and paperwork may sound daunting for some. Worry not! We have broken it down for you step-by-step. Start by doing the following in any order as you may like:

Start by checking monthly bank statements

half yearly budget check

The first step is to check the bank statement. There are two ways to do it. Either log into your bank account and check the detailed statements. Or download the PDFs sent by your bank from your email account. Run a fine comb through your statements to check the following: 

  • Any overcharge on the current services or in the credit card statement
  • Any expense which can be avoided–some expenses become redundant with time–example gym membership we don’t use– cancel them
  • Room for more savings–double check if you can switch some service provider and save money

This exercise will provide enough room to make smart changes in the way we spend money, giving more for savings. Always remember–a penny saved is a penny earned.

Check the progress of your investments and match them with your annual goals

half yearly budget check

Saving alone is not enough to reach our financial goals. Keeping a tight grip on our investments and managing them prudently help us in achieving our goals much faster than we anticipate. Depending upon your investment portfolio, take these steps:

  • Note when your FDs and RDs are maturing. Think of the way to use them upon maturity. If the interest rate has lowered, research another investment avenue.
  • Track the growth of your mutual funds. In case lock-in period is not a concern, make a switch if your funds are not performing well. There are many websites which shows  mutual fund performance and comparison chart.
  • For investment in property, check the market and decide on selling. Booking profit is a trick millionaires use to double their money. Don’t stay invested in a property which you have bought purely for investment.
  • Book profit in case your shares are at an all-time high and identify more stocks to invest in. Buy and average those stocks where there is a dip in price and you anticipate profit in the long run.

Start planning for the holidays and festive season in advance

End of June is the right time to think about the rest of the year. Plan what you want to buy this festival season and start saving for it. One can also start doing research on where to get a loan from. For personal loan, you can check instant Money View loan app. Another way, besides the above two, is to take an advance from your office. Check with HR. These three methods would help you to have fun-filled holidays without worrying about the cash crunch. In case you are taking an advance or loan, please devise a strategy to pay it off.

Revisit household expenses

half yearly budget check

Household expenses change monthly. Keeping a close eye on them can help us save a lot. Check your credit card statements and service accounts to identify places where you can switch and save. Try to make a switch if expenses have increased. Call the service provider and ask for a discount for being a loyal customer. Or shop around and make use of the offers given to new customers. The easiest way to keep track of your monthly spending is to use our Money View app. It tabulates the expenses. Plus, the graphics are the best way to analyse data. The idea of the exercise is to save every penny where we can.

Delete the plans which may have become redundant and make new ones

Lastly, revamp. There is no need to stick to the original plan. Revise and improve. There is always room for improvement, especially if you are not able to do the things originally mentioned. Planned for the summer vacation and couldn’t go–start a plan for winter. Start now as hotels and flights rates go up in the last quarter. Do the same with your investments. RD has matured but rates have fallen, invest with another bank or in a stock or mutual fund. With budget and financial planning, we must improvise with time. We can do it with all aspects of our budget. Be creative and find avenues to make yours better.

Have you ever made changes to your existing budget? What have you done to make it better? Please share with us in the comments below.

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