- Personal Loans
- Personal Loans
- Home & Auto
October 13, 2022
Five Budgeting Tips to Make Managing Your Finances Easier
If you’re like most people, you don’t particularly enjoy managing your monthly budget. Maybe you’ve even given up budgeting altogether because it was too tedious. We hear you, and we’ve got five budgeting tips to help you rekindle the savings flame.
1. Choose a budgeting method that fits your life.
“The best exercise is the one you’ll do.” The same concept applies here. If you’ve burnt out on budgeting in the past, think about why and adjust your budgeting method going forward. Was the budget too restrictive? Did you use a system that didn’t work for you? Did you use a digital spreadsheet when you’d prefer a notebook, or vice versa? Budgeting isn’t one-size-fits-all, and we’re all different people.
Start by thinking about your life, financial goals and expectations for your budget. Do you want to know where every dollar is going? Or do you want to set a savings percentage goal and let your other dollars do what they want? The answer will shape what budgeting method you choose, how detailed your spending tracking needs to be and how much time budget management will take you. (If you’re brand new to creating a monthly budget, learn how to get started in three simple steps.)
2. Hack the power of habit.
The task of regular financial oversight can feel like a burden, but like many things you do, it’s something that can be built into your routine to make it a habit. Once the habit is formed, you’ll be more likely to consider the task of budgeting the same way you think about grocery shopping. It’s just something you do. Start small with a goal to review your finances one day a week for just 20 minutes. Take that time to look over receipts and check your account activity. You’ll develop a better awareness of your spending and overall financial picture, and over time, financial oversight will become a habit.
3. Review and revisit your budget regularly.
They say the only constant in life is change. This applies to our financial picture too. Your rent, your job, your family size — these are just a few of the many variables that impact your budget. Take some time to reflect on how your budget is doing every few months and make adjustments to spending and saving categories as needed.
Need a little help tracking your spending? Try the Budgets tool in Grow online and mobile banking!* Create personalized budgets and monitor where your money goes. Check it out!
4. Don’t forget the long game.
It can be difficult to think a few years into the future, let alone decades. But when it comes to saving for retirement, time is your biggest asset. Understanding the value of compound interest will help you see the bigger picture because planning for retirement means playing the long game. By putting away even a few percent per paycheck into a 401(k), IRA or another retirement account, you’ll be investing in your future financial security.
5. Decide what sacrifices are worth it.
You’ll hear some budget gurus suggest that you should never purchase a latté or dine at a restaurant again until you’re debt-free. That’s just not going to work for everyone and can create an adversarial relationship with the budgeting mindset. Yes, it’s true that any effective budget will require making some sacrifices, especially if you’re trying to reduce or eliminate debt, but it’s still possible to enjoy your life while effectively managing your finances. Any plan that requires otherwise might be a one-way ticket to budgeting burnout. So, our final budgeting tip is to decide what discretionary spending is worth it to you and account for it in your monthly budget.
When it comes to financial management, everyone starts somewhere. We encourage you to apply these budgeting tips as you review your financial plan this month. Your future self will thank you.
*Additional data charges may apply when using apps. Please see your wireless carrier for more information.
How to Find Your Routing & Account Numbers
When you make a payment online, by phone or on a mobile device, you may be asked for our routing number and your checking account number. Credit unions and banks use these numbers to identify accounts and make sure money gets where it’s supposed to be. You’ll also need to provide your routing and checking account numbers for:
- Direct deposits
- Electronic checks
- Military allotments
- Wire transfers
Where to Find Your Routing & Checking Account Numbers
Your personal checks include both our routing number and your account number, as shown on the Grow check example below.
Don’t have a Grow check? No worries.
Visit any Grow store and ask for a Direct Deposit Form. It lists both your routing number and checking account number.
Making a Loan Payment
When it comes to making payments, we try to make it as painless as possible to pay your loan every month. We have several different ways to pay, including convenient online options.
You have two ways to pay online by transferring funds from another bank or credit union.
- Grow Online Banking (Preferred payment method for any loan)
This is the simplest way to pay your loan. You can make one-time payments or set up automatic recurring payments in Grow Online Banking. Once you log in, select “Transfer/Payments” from the menu. If you’re not enrolled in Grow Online Banking yet, you can set up your account in just a few minutes.
- Debit Card or ACH (Available for auto, personal loans and HELOCs)
Note: ACH and debit card payments are not available for credit cards or most mortgages, except HELOCs.
We accept ACH payments with no additional fees or Mastercard® and Visa® debit cards with a convenience fee of $4.95. To get started with an online ACH or debit card payment, select Pay Now below.
Pay by Mail
You can also pay any Grow loan by check through the mail. Please remember to include your account number and Grow loan number on the check. (For credit card payments, please do not write your 16-digit credit card number on the check, which can cause a delay in processing the payment.)
Address for auto, credit card, personal loan and HELOC payments:
Grow Financial Federal Credit Union
P.O. Box 75466
Chicago, IL 60675-5466
Address for personal first or second mortgages and home equity payments:
Grow Financial Federal Credit Union
P.O. Box 11733
Newark, NJ 07101-4733