Budgeting and saving is sometimes challenging for most of us and the educational system doesn’t do us justice with little to no information on financial independence.
Add to that the fact that you do not have secure or consistent income. So how do you manage and save? What if you are on commission or unsure of the exact amount you will earn each month?
Here’s my advice:
Have at least 1-2 months income in the bank as your safety net. Every two weeks I get paid I put some away in my saving then pay my bills. After that I try to live off of what is left for two weeks. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn’t… If you are already working a commission job, this may be tricky, but best to have that buffer available to you. This may require some financial sacrifice for a few months. You may have to cut back on coffees and dining out for a little while until you have established enough savings that you feel comfortable with.
At one point in my life I was so focus on moving that I learning how to build up credit, how to get a loan and how to save. Here’s the secret you’ve got to live with just your needs and not wants. This is a never-ending process of learning…
I do think it is important to get a few months ahead, meaning don’t spend what you earned this month, but spend what you had earned a few months ago.
Once you have your “buffer” savings set up, I would then recommend starting an emergency savings account in separate account. It’s okay if you have to build up your emergency savings fund slowly.
It is best to set an amount you feel comfortable with and every month have that amount transferred automatically to your emergency fund.
Without a secure income, it can be frustrating to juggle your finances. Creating a safety net account and emergency fund will give you a sense of confidence and security.
Most importantly, do not be too hard on yourself if you have a bad month. I have worked commission jobs many times. You have to take the good months with the bad months. It’s usually the good months that get us into trouble and give us a false sense of security. When money is flowing, that is when we need to be setting some aside for the bad times.