5 critical items for any budget
Want to go on vacation? Buy a car? Make a down payment on a house? Put a new roof on the home you've got? Make it a budget item.
If you've got a big expense planned, get that money "off the table before it gets into your checking account," Cabaniss says.
Be willing to rethink your budget and your plans. If you're craving a $5,000 vacation and need another $10,000 for a list of large expenses, "that means you'll have to take more than $1,200 a month from the paycheck for a year," she says. But "you may say there's no way we can cut $1,200 from our monthly spending," she says. "So you go back and do the best you can."
"It's a back-and-forth process." You may have to scale back your vacation or the list of "special" purchases you're planning on making this year, she says.