The household budget in the new year

Many people made a big splash in December, with or without “collateral”. It seems as if that is necessary and so this month we do not look at whether and, if so, to what extent there are financial resources to do what we do. As a result, many people will have to tighten their belts more than tightly in January. Moreover, it is an excellent month to put your financial housekeeping book in order for the current year.


We all know what the basics are, you shouldn’t spend more money than you earn. But sometimes, for whatever reason, there is no other option. If such a situation arises, it is good to have a plan to catch up. So it starts with mapping out what money comes in each month. Since many people do not know exactly what they spend, it is always good to look at what you spend on:

  • What is necessary, such as your mortgage or rent
  • What is desirable, such as being able to save some money for unforeseen circumstances
  • How nice, like new clothes or a nice gadget

What has to be done has to be done

It goes without saying that the costs must be paid first, so you cannot avoid using a program (all kinds of things can be downloaded for free on the internet) or manually keeping track of the costs that really have to be incurred. Tightening the belt is also a matter of setting priorities. Costs that have to be costs to be able to live, to have a warm and light house, to be able to cook, to wash yourself and to fill your stomach.

Take a critical look at all costs

Then comes the next step for telephone and internet . If you have to wait a month with your money, that’s it. However, if you have to look at your costs on a structural basis, it makes sense to compare telephone and internet subscriptions. A landline telephone for a few euros more (with your internet subscription) can save you a lot of mobile telephone costs. Should you absolutely not call home? Or in other words, setting priorities. Another aspect is the groceries that every person has to buy in order to live. But besides the differences in costs per supermarket, you also have to wonder whether you should eat certain fish that you are used to or whether a cheaper version can also be nutritious and tasty. We often act out of habit and you have to let go of that in order to look at your costs seriously and objectively. So you have to look objectively at whether there are other (read also: cheaper) products that are just as good. Moreover, it is about how much money is available for groceries and that can also mean that you forego extras and only buy groceries to be able to live. If you have to tighten your belt, you can also consider setting aside a minimal amount to save . No matter how limited, you still build something up this way. Even if only to cover unforeseen costs. Moreover, the idea that you are building something, no matter how minimal, gives a positive feeling. Clothing is one of those costs that only has a must-have aspect to a small extent. Many people want a lot of clothes, but usually it is not a matter of having to. When? If clothing needs to be replaced, is ugly, faded, broken or too small. Not buying new clothes for a few months can make a substantial difference. This also applies to small costs such as socks, tights, etc. It must be possible to refill petrol , because the car must continue to drive. But is that true and what other way than taking the car? Besides the fact that it is good for your health, there are probably things you can do on foot or by bike and you can easily save a full tank of costs on a monthly basis. A difficult one is insurance , because we have to be insured for or actually against everything. Yet it is good to ask yourself whether you actually have to do all this, in addition to the mandatory insurance. For example, additional dental insurance may cost you more on an annual basis than the total amount to be reimbursed. Then it makes more sense to set aside the money for that insurance. The added advantage is that if you do not use it, you will have this money in your account. There are even more insurance policies that you can take a critical look at. If you pay monthly, you pay more than on an annual basis with various insurers. It may be useful to switch to annual payment and see whether package insurance really makes sense. If there is insurance that you do not actually use, you may be able to save money with separate insurance. Furthermore, not all insurance policies are equally expensive from all insurers, so carefully compare the insurance policies you think you need. Subscriptions looking at what is going on and what is so important that it needs to be maintained is useful. Subscriptions for magazines, the sports club/gym or otherwise. If you have internet, you can also view a newspaper on the internet. It may take some getting used to, but if you look carefully you can find all the news and background on the internet. The sports club may be fun, but also expensive. Depending on the sport, you can also check whether this needs to be done through an association. Extra is such a pocket for small expenses. Think of parking costs or a separate message that you forgot earlier. All these small costs can add up on a monthly basis and it is therefore important to take a serious look at these costs. So ask yourself whether you have to incur these costs.


Discipline in such processes is a must and if you know how much difficulty you have with this, then it is good to call on someone’s help and do it together. This is of course not necessary, but you are responsible for your own life and so at that moment you accept that you may make a mess of things financially. If you are also responsible for other people, that is actually not something you can afford. There is always help if you ask for it. Consider this before you get started.