Ask Terry Questions Personal Budgeting

Personal Budgeting

By Terry Savage on December 18, 2019 | Credit/Debt

Hi Terry,
My father for Xmas is willing to set me up with someone that can look over my finances and set up a clear budget and savings plan. I live in the city of Chicago and was wondering if you of anyone in that field that could meet with me face to face to go over my finances and set up a budget personally tailored for me.
Thanks so much!

Terry Says

What a lovely thought. And I can make it a very inexpensive gift! The first step — even if you’re not in debt — it to all the National Foundation for Credit Counseling at 800-388-2227. That connects you to the nearest local office and they will be delighted to go over your finances and give you direction. The cost is usually free or minimal.
The second step is to go to Amazon and get The Budget Kit by Judy Lawrence. It’s a great workbook. And if you’re just starting out, you’ll find it very easy to follow — and it will force you to consider all your spending, not just monthly but annual costs, and savings too. Your Dad will love going over it with you after you do the worksheets.

At this point, you will have a lot more confidence and direction. Then you can either get Quicken as a download from to manage your finances online. Or you can skip to download the Mint app, which does the same thing but on your smartphone. Once you have the “idea” and “feel” of how a budget works (mainly to “organize” your life, not to become a tyrant) then you’ll probably want to do everything using technology. But starting this way, you’ll have confidence and tenacity.

Good luck — and thank your Dad!



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