One Budgeting Tip that Makes Budgeting Easier than Vacationing

Record it immediately. Yep, that's my tip. Over the last year, I've been frustrated at how poorly I've been keeping records and budgets.  I guess I do have an excuse.  In 2012, we visited 10 different countries and traveled for four months after moving away from PNG.  It's hard to keep track of all your receipts when your geographic location is constantly changing.  I have about a hundred … [Read more...]

Best Budgeting Software | Why Mvelopes Won My Heart, But I Still Recommend YNAB

Let's start with a boring reminder: there is no best. When I refer to the best budgeting software, I'm talking about the software that is best for me and my situation.  The closer your habits and preferences mimic mine, the more likely you are to have the same preferences. Back in 2011, I wrote about the best personal finance software, and I crowned MoneyDance as the King of the software. … [Read more...]

3 Reasons Why We Kissed Budgeting Goodbye

Yes, I am the author of The Secret to a Successful Budget. Yes, in that book I said, "[the budget is] an essential component of any healthy financial plan." Yes, I also said, "If I had to identify one financial habit that helped us become debt-free, it would be the budget." Yes, I did mention, "For almost seven years now we've kept a budget - even now that we are debt-free. And we still … [Read more...]

Why Make A Budget?

“Hey, Craig.  What’s the most important financial decision you’ve made?” I wish my answer could be more glamorous.  I wish I could tell you it was that stock I bought for .10 cents that is now worth $85.  I wish I could tell you it was my decision to buy a piece of property right before the economy improved. However, one of my first answers would be dry and boring – the decision to start a … [Read more...]