Ahh… summer! The season of flip-flops and sunscreen, of lemonade and baseball. What’s not to love?
Unfortunately, summer can also be the season of overspending for some of us. When the sun is blazing across a cloudless sky and the day stretches on with endless possibilities, purse strings are looser and cards are swiped with abandon. But nothing kills summer fun like a busted budget and a mountain of debt. So how can you stay financially fit this summer?
Keeping your finances intact throughout the summer is possible if you’re ready to plan ahead and make responsible choices. Here are four tips for a financially fit summer.
Prepare for a possible change in income
If you’re a freelancer, business owner or get paid per diem, expect to see a drop in income during the summer. Business is notoriously slower across many industries at this time, so it’s best to be prepared for this reality. To avoid dipping into savings or going into debt, trim your discretionary spending and use the extra funds to cover non-discretionary expenses. You can also choose to find a side hustle for the summer to cover the gap in your income.
Get your budget summer-ready
Your budget will see some changes in the summertime, and it’s wise to prepare it in advance instead of being caught unaware. Here are some changes you might expect:
- Higher utility bills
- Increase in fuel prices
- Travel expenses
- Increased activities for kids
Create a vacation budget
Build a workable budget for your summer getaway to avoid overspending. Attach a dollar amount for your hotel stay, car rental, food costs, transportation, entertainment and outings as well as any other costs you expect to encounter during vacation.
Review and adjust as necessary
Blowing a budget is never an excuse to go all out and overspend without considering the consequences. To avoid falling into this trap, review your budget and your overall spending on a regular basis throughout the summer. Being aware of the state of your finances will make it easier to make responsible choices going forward.
Follow these tips to keep your finances intact throughout the summer.
Your Turn: How do you plan to stay financially fit this summer? Share your tips with us in the comments.