Managing My Money Takes Just 20 Minutes a Month. Here's How

by Christy Bieber | Updated July 25, 2021 - First published on May 18, 2021

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Fanned out one dollar bills with a stop watch on top of them.

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Money management can become really simple with this technique.

When it comes to personal finance, there's a lot to do. Most people have bills to pay, money to transfer to savings, and accounts to review. All of this can take time and effort, and it can make managing money feel like a major hassle.

Since I don't enjoy spending hours each month taking care of mundane financial tasks, I take a different approach. I've set up a system that allows me to handle all of my financial obligations in just 20 minutes a month.

Here's how I did it.

This simple process has made managing my money incredibly easy

I've been able to streamline the process of financial management by doing two simple things:

  • Making a detailed budget that I can live on comfortably
  • Automating everything

Making a detailed budget was the first step in my process because I didn't want to have to worry about carefully tracking whether I was saving enough or spending too much. I set my long-term and short-term savings goals, built my budget around covering the essentials and investing for my goals, and then allocated the rest of my funds to different spending categories.

Once I knew how much I had available to spend, I could put everything on my credit card with the confidence that I'd have enough to pay off the bill in full each month. I was also able to make sure I'd have enough money in my bank account to save for retirement and other goals.

That enabled me to move on to the next step, which was automating all aspects of my financial life. I have all of my bills set to autopay, from mortgage payments to utilities to credit cards. And I have automatic transfers set up so money moves into my different savings accounts after I get paid.

Each month, I take a quick look at my credit card statements to make sure there are no errors. I'll check to make sure that my payments are all processed correctly, which takes seconds since I have text alerts set up when the money is sent out. And if necessary, I'll make any updates to my budget if there's a new or unusual expense coming up.

It takes me 20 minutes or less to do these tasks. Before I set up this system, it would take a long time to manually pay bills, transfer money to my different savings accounts, and add up all of my obligations to make sure my paycheck would cover them.

Automation is easier than ever thanks to all of the different financial management apps available. These include:

They really can make managing money effortless provided that you budget carefully and are confident there will always be enough in your bank account so that your autopayments won't overdraft your account.

And not only does this process make managing money simpler, but it also helps me to ensure that I'm avoiding mistakes such as not paying credit card bills on time or missing a month of savings. My autopay is set to pay my entire balance in full and to move enough to savings to meet my goals. I can effortlessly make the right financial choices without wasting time or energy forcing myself to manage money responsibly month after month.

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