Bank Better, Live Better

When should you review your budget?

Your budget needs to change and evolve as you do.

As your life changes, your budget should too. So when should you review your plan?

  • Annual review: Even if nothing major changes, review your budget at least once a year. Along with annual price increases, your goals and your priorities may change over time, and you’ll need to update your budget accordingly
  • Review when you get an increase: If you get an annual increase, time your annual budget review around this. Also remember to adjust your budget any other time you receive an increase – such as after a job change or promotion. Aim to increase all your debt repayment and savings contributions by the same percentage as your increase. This way, you’ll pay off your debts more quickly without noticing the impact on your pocket, and your saving contributions will keep up with inflation
  • When life changes: You should also adjust your budget if your lifestyle or circumstances change. For example, if your family grows (or gets smaller when children leave home), or your income decreases for a time

What to check for:

Each time you review, there are a few key things you’re checking for.

  • Are you spending too much? It’s always worth reviewing your spending to identify where you may be overspending
  • Could you save more? Increase debt and savings contributions whenever possible
  • Are you spending enough? If your circumstances have changed, you’ll need to increase your budget to reflect this. For example, your food budget will increase as your family grows, and you may need to add school fees. Also check that you are spending enough on expenses such as insurance and medical aid

If you already have insurance, check whether you are appropriately insured as part of your yearly review, as you may be over- or underinsured. You don’t want to pay for insurance you don’t need, but it’s also critical to make sure you have enough insurance as your life changes.

If you’re unsure about what you should insure, start with anything that is essential for your family’s security or what you need in order to earn your income. You may wish to speak to an FSCA-registered financial adviser to decide what insurance is right for your needs.

Was this article helpful?

you may also like...

View All Other Articles View All
saving for short-term goals

saving for short-term goals

Whenever you can, get into the habit of saving up before you make purchases – whether it’s a TV or a holiday – rather than buying on credit.

Read More
let your money grow

let your money grow

If you want to build your wealth, you need to get into the habit of saving a portion of your salary every single month.

Read More
How to repay your debt

How to repay your debt

If you’re feeling under pressure with your monthly debt repayments, you’re certainly not alone. It’s time for a repayment plan.

Read More
High school didn't prepare you for this

High school didn't prepare you for this

Life is an epic journey, but are you ever really ready for the “real world”?

Read More
View All Other Articles