What you can learn from MBAs about your home budget
Take a hard and long look over your home's budget and be harsh in disposing of unneeded expenditures. Do you need the cable, how about driving as much as you do? Small reductions in spending add up to quite a bit of savings in the long run for your fiscal year.
While studying business I was disheartened and often disgusted by the callous, money grubbing values instilled in MBA graduates and yet there are good view points to be learned. As basic living costs go up and wages stay stagnantly low while many of us are under-employed learning to see your personal economics the way a business would see their bottomline can benefit you a great deal.
Entertainment: What do you consider entertainment? List entertainment options out in a word document. Now put asterisks * next to the top three. Cut everything but those three for a month. Once you've spent the month on your new, short list of entertainment take a week and detox from as much of the remaining three as possible. After the week if you can cut another one off the list do it, if you feel like the three need to stay that's fine. Focus on other areas of your home budget to tighten up on and enjoy a bit of entertainment.
Transportation: Cars, if you live in the country or suburbs are absolutely necessary. However if you live where good public transportation exists (hey Europe!) think about cutting out the car and picking up a nice bike. If you live in the suburbs can you take public transportation parts of the week or carpool and save on gas? Car insurance adds up real quick. Think about options to be a one car family.
Housing: Can you find roommates, move in with family or downsize? All of these moves are big ones but can help you save big time as you rid your annual budget of all unnecessary items. Remember, be ruthless like any business is with costs.
Food: Keep it simple to keep it cheap. Do you know if cooking is or is not cheaper than eating out? Write it down and budget it out, eating out can be cheaper in some cases but generally it will cost you more. Most of the time eating a cheap but nutritionally satisfying meal is cheaper when you're in a family however if you are single it is more often than not less costly to eat one meal out. A simple and veggie filled burrito costs less at a Mexican quick food stop than buying all the ingredients that may go bad and be wasted. Be mindful of what areas of your daily meals are easier and cheaper to outsource.