I know we're all a bit freaked out about money right now due to COVID since a lot of us can't go into work if you still have a FT/PT job, are losing clients if you own your own business, had your hours cut, and everything in between. I sure do feel you on this and that's why I want to talk about your business budget to see where you can cut costs and save money. Although this blog is about business, everything here will fully apply to your personal budget as well.
As you may know, I was in banking for a long minute, so you'd think I'd slay my budget, but I'm human too and mess up sometimes. So back in January, my great friend, Jody Salbo, owner of Halo Insights, LLC held a strategic planning and budget session with me for both of my businesses, Urban Consulting, LLC, and Complianceology. And, man oh man. It was eye-opening on several different levels.
Aside from my VA, my monthly expenses are meager, considering I have two businesses. For both businesses, my expenses are under $200/mo. I'm (normally) very conscious when I swipe my card and for how much, but what gets me, as I mentioned are the small miscellaneous recurring subscription charges. I'd forget I signed up for them, would say "Eh, it's only $10/mo and it's kind of helpful to me...", or "I'll cancel that next month" and then forget about it for another 3 months. You know, all the normal things we all do. So Jody pointed out that yes, my expenses are fairly low for two businesses, but I had so many little charges for things I signed up for a few months prior that I didn't even realize how much my monthly expenses had actually increased!! Had Jody not helped me with this, all of those little charges would have cost me about $2,000 for 2020 -- that's $200/month for crap I didn't need or wasn't even using. How did I not notice that!? My expenses jumped another $200 and it never 'clicked'.
So, this is what you need to do so you don't end up like me:
⚡ Go to Halo Insights, LLC, and grab the Freelancer Budget Template for free. It is under Downloadable Resources
⚡ Gather your last three months of bank statements for your business
⚡ Highlight your actual expenses. Every. Single. One. Even if it's $2/mo
⚡ Input all of those numbers into the Template - this template is so amazing, Jody is really providing you a GREAT tool! As long as you can type in a handful of numbers you literally do not need any other skills to use this - it will do all of the calculations for you!
⚡Lastly, look at your totals in utter horror or, maybe you're a better person than me and you will be pleasantly surprised.
Once you've felt your appropriate emotion based on your totals, look at each expense,
and ask yourself:
🌟 is it something you genuinely need for your business
🌟 is it providing you true value in the terms of streamlining a process
🌟 does it automate something which in turn saves you significant time
🌟 does it make your brand stand out in a significant way
🌟 does it bring you business or clients
🌟 would your business be negatively impacted if you were to do away with it
🌟 are you using it to it's fullest capabilities or do you use it for just 1 or 2 things
🌟 are you actually using it
🌟 is there a less expensive plan you could switch to; or
🌟 would the free version suffice
🌟 can you negotiate the price
🌟 is this something you could split the cost with someone; and lastly
🌟 can you switch to a different company that has the same service at a lower price
Now, the most important part is to set a deadline for yourself to change plans or cancel the expense, whatever you decided! And while you're at it, don't be afraid to ask for a refund for the most current charge or the last few charges -- I did and was refunded just under $200!! Jody made me set a deadline so I wouldn't put it off and keep paying for these things, so if you're like me and need to be held accountable, drop a comment, or email me and let me know what your deadline date is and I'll be all over you to make sure you get it done 😋.
Don't forget to sign up with us (below near the comments section) to get notifications of new blogs when they are posted and join our newsletter - new subscribers get a unique 20% off coupon code for your next purchase at the shop!
This blog is not legal or financial advice nor does it constitute a client-consultant relationship. Read our legal disclaimer to answer further questions. Should you want to discuss a client-consultant relationship, schedule your free consultation. This post is not sponsored or endorsed by Halo Insights, LLC, or Jody Salbo, I just love her face.