I genuinely believe that if you are just starting to plan for your future whether that is early retirement or financial independence or developing a plan to get out of debt, then you need to start budgeting. I spend a minimal amount of time a month budgeting and it has helped me to know where my money was going. I noticed a pattern of spending behaviors that became acceptable to me.
Here are 5 actions I will not be cheap about
- Tipping – I will always tip. This one is straightforward. There are services provided that you should be grateful about because you are clearly paying for something you do not want to do or cannot do yourself.
- Extreme hotel bargain hunting – I am a self admitted over-researcher. I will not go out of my way to stay in the cheapest hotel just to save some money per night. My peace of mind is a lot more valuable than trying to bargain hunt a hotel.
- Eating healthier – you know what they say, you are what you eat. I will 100% of the time pass on the $2 McDonalds burger or $1 CostCo food to starve a bit and spend a few more bucks or wait an extra hour to eat healthier.
- Place of living – there are certain limits you place on yourself when deciding where to live. The obvious ones are the safety of the area or neighborhood, distance from your work, and price point. For me my limits are simply based on peace of mind and being less stressed out. As I have moved from city to city, one of my criteria has been the distance to where I work because I choose to drive. Do I sacrifice saving money to lease? Yes, absolutely.
- Money spent on family – my parents have always struggled with money and the lack of financial education inevitably got passed down to me. Thus all the financial mistakes I made in my 20s. When it comes to my family, I support them as much as I can. I will give them (mainly my mom) money every month and also pay for my mom’s airplane ticket overseas every year to visit family. I pay for my brother’s airline ticket when it is time to visit. If there is a special sporting event off my bucket list, then I will pay for the entire trip which ends up being thousands. I like to have experiences with my family. I might be able to sacrifice a bit from anything on this list, but my family will never be one.