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It was worth it.
You paid a steep price to make all of your Childish Gambino-Grande-Solange dreams come true. And witnessing Idris Elba fulfill his lifelong dream of scoring the Coachella DJ gig. Well, that was priceless!
Yes, the three-day music festival event may have drained your bank account – at least that’s how you felt in the moment.
Now, however, the music has faded away and it’s time to start saving money again and get your finances back on track. But how do you do this?
Luckily for you, we’ve put together a four step guide to shoring up your financial situation. And, if you play your budgeting cards right, you may even have enough cash for your 2020 Coachella trip. Read on to learn more.
1. Assess the Damage
It’s time to look reality in the face. How much debt did you rack up to pay for Coachella? How much money do you have left in your bank account?
To get started, calculate all the expenses you will need to cover from now until payday. Get real about your financial situation. You may have to cancel after work drinks or eat dinner at your parents’ house three times this week. But, whatever you do, don’t get behind on your bills.
The faster you get back on track, the better.
2. Create a Bare-Bones Budget
A bare-bones budget is your old budget with all of the extra perks stripped away.
Basically, you can include money for groceries, but don’t you dare think about that Cloud Macchiato from Starbucks. You had your fun, now it’s time to get back to adulting. Plus, you only have to live with a minimalistic budget until your bank account is back in the black.
Make a list of essential, non-negotiable expenses, such as your rent/mortgage, car payment and insurance. These bills get priority. Next, write down all of your other expenses. What can you cut out temporarily, like eating out or your Hulu subscription?
Get creative with flexible expenses like groceries. Make a game of it. What new meals can you come up with from leftover food in your pantry? Adjusting your meal plan to feature cheap staples like rice and beans can cut your food bill for the month as well. Other quick ways to save over the next month or two include:
- No shopping other than groceries
- Use cash for groceries. No backup payments to save you at check-out
- Cut or pause all subscriptions, like Netflix, your gym membership and Prime
- Carpool or rely on public transportation to save on gas
- No eating out
- Minimize utility usage – i.e. shorter showers and shutting lights off
- Return anything you recently bought that is still returnable
3. Get Extra Money Fast
Now is the time to sell anything and everything that you no longer need. You can list small, valuable items on eBay to make shipping easier. Large items can be sold through local marketplaces, like Craigslist and OfferUp. You can sell the rest of your stuff by holding a yard sale.
Here’s another idea to raise cash fast: See if you can put in a few extra hours at work or pick up more shifts. Try offering babysitting, dog walking or cleaning services to family, friends and neighbors.
Devote every penny you earn towards debt payoff and balancing your budget. This is not the time to reward yourself with extra splurges.
4. Save for Next Time
Already making future Coachella plans? Money.com estimates that festival costs about $2,347. Start saving now by putting $200 into savings each month if possible. Automatic savings makes this part a cinch.
If you’re a Chime member, you can take advantage of automated savings in two ways. First, you can choose to have 10 percent of your paycheck automatically transferred on to your Chime Savings Account. Secondly, you can have every purchase you make on your Chime Visa® Debit Card rounded up to the nearest dollar. The round up amounts are automatically transferred to your Chime Savings Account. Cha-ching.
Plan Before You Splurge
Life without trips and adventures is kind of blah. And, while Coachella may have put you in a tough spot financially, hopefully it was a wonderful experience that you’ll remember for years to come.
You can have the best of both worlds, though. Every new adventure or splurge doesn’t need to derail your budget. By following the guide above, you can effectively plan and save for Coachella, as well as other fun experiences.
Are you ready to start saving and budgeting so that you can achieve your financial goals and treat yourself to special events?