It’s the second quarter of the year and during this time, my husband and I normally assess our financial status. I have talked about our financial goals in one of my previous posts. We both assess our financial status every quarter. During that time, our goal was to save up for the birth of my daughter (Baby Z), and thankfully, we got to save up for that.

This time around, we are trying to look for good investments that we can use for Baby Z’s education in the future. But of course, what will we invest if we don’t get to save. We get to set aside savings by preparing a good home budget to follow.

We have been pretty successful in budgeting our expenses and I would like to share with you some tips on how we control our expenses:

Track Eating-out Expenses but Do Not Scrimp on Food
My husband has this rule to never scrimp on food. But, of course, this does not mean that you can splurge all the time and eat in all the restaurants in manila. What my husband and I do is that we go to the grocery on a weekly basis and we monitor our expenses. We see to it that our budget for groceries stay within a range that we set. We notice that if we go to the grocery on an empty stomach, our bill really is bigger than if we do shop “busog” or on a full stomach. Another thing that we do is we schedule dates and go to nice restaurants, too. This way, we do not think that we are depriving ourselves of this luxury.

Shop “Intentionally”
When we shop, we shop for the items that we really need. We go to a store and we go there “intentionally” and with a purpose. We go on ‘planned’ shopping sprees. What I also do is I check on coupons from daily deal sites to see if they have things that I really plan to buy and if I find good deals, I buy coupons from these sites. If I do see something that I want to buy, even if I don’t need it, I check and see if I have enough from the allotted budget for shopping (BTW, we have allotted budgets for dining out, shopping, groceries, etc.)

Set Aside Savings First
I know that a lot of people say this, but honestly, this is the hardest thing to do. Sometimes, even if you a lot a percentage of your income and place it as savings, when you lack money to pay the bills, there is no other choice but to get from that pool of money. What we do is we really set aside savings and place it in an account or investment that is hard to touch. Try this strategy! This really works.

Create Ways to Earn for Things that you Want/Need
Before we hired a yaya for Baby Z, my husband and I discussed this and we said that if both of us wanted a yaya, then we had to make ways to earn the money for her pay. You really have to actively create ways on how to augment your income for an additional need/want. You cannot just rely on hoping for the best and hoping that income will come to pay for the expense that you will incur.

These are some of the tips that we would like to share with you. Do you have other financial advice that you want to share? Let’s exchange ideas!

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About The Author

Ginger is the General Manager of She is also the co-founder of a tech start-up company called Turn Up Trumps, Inc. She is a business coach and has her own program called Love the Leap. She has been a blogger since 2005, writing for, and She graduated MA in Communications Major in Integrated Marketing Communications from the University of Asia and the Pacific. She worked as an account executive for a couple of ad agencies. She also managed a food franchise store. Her longest corporate stint was as a product manager for a known bank in the Philippines.

2 Responses

  1. Imee

    These are really great tips! :) it even works for a single twentysomething like me who doesn’t even have kids and still lives with her parents. :D I especially like the last tip, about the yaya. You made an interesting point: You can’t just rely on hoping for the best. Although I know there’s always a way, and that God, the Universe, or some sort of Higher Power always provides, I still think we have to move on our own and make things happen instead of just waiting for it to happen.


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