IF YOU’RE LOOKING TO boost your bank account and lower your bills, assessing where you can trim your expenses is an ideal step toward taking control of your finances. But just as cutting back on calories isn’t always easy, paring back your expenses and identifying areas where you’re overspending can present a challenge. You may have to modify your budget, re-evaluate your spending habits and even shift your mindset. So if you want to go on a financial diet but aren’t sure how to start, try the following expert-backed strategies.
Start tracking your expenses. “In order to cut back on the budget, you need to have a budget,” says Kevin Gallegos, the vice president of client enrollment with Freedom Debt Relief, a debt settlement company based in Phoenix. “While people may talk about trimming the budget, relatively few actually have one written down. A spreadsheet or pencil and paper will work as well as budget-specific software or an app,” he says.