Being in Control of Your Household Spending

The NZ economy is currently facing a period of high uncertainty and high inflation. With the cost of living increasing, Rural Accountants would like to share some basic and important steps often missed when creating a household budget.


1)    Begin by Setting your Goals

A budget without connection to what is personally important to you easily becomes frustrating and meaningless. Increase the likelihood of successfully sticking to your budget by sitting down and clarifying on paper your long, medium and short term goals. Don’t be discouraged if your short term goals are simply making it through your current situation.


2)    Analyse and Prioritise Current Spending

Place your current spending into the following 4 categories. This should really clarify what is important to you and bring awareness to any weaknesses or wastage in current spending.


Survival Needs - Basic Household Expenses


Critical Wants - These include things not necessary for survival but that you are not likely to want to give up. For example, broadband and cellular plans, fuel and vehicle expenses, even medical care or multi vitamins.


Lifestyle Choices - The bulk of things may go in here such as gym memberships, eating out, fashion choices, movies, media subscriptions and buying gifts.


Long Term Wants - This includes savings or working towards wants or needs for the future. For example, saving to put your child through education or for a vacation to visit family. Whilst having these expenses can be hard in the short term, long term they bring big rewards and cutting them out can seem a depressing concept.


3)    Add Income and Subtract Expenses

How much income is going into each category above? What is left over and what do you wish to spend it on?

This is the stage many people start their budget. Take advantage of the huge number of worksheets and tools available on the web to help you from this point on.


Try to build up a ‘backup’ fund to pay for your survival and critical wants for 6 months ‘just in case’. While this may seem a doomsday approach, the reduction in stress such a fund will bring can really add to your overall wellbeing.   

Often household spending and business spending can overlap and create confusion. Remember Rural Accountants offer a wide range of services, including business advice and are here to help in anyway we can. Feel free to call for an obligation free chat. 0800 308 5015


What Our Customers Think

Great local Accountants. They provide an excellent service with great explanations for the layman. They provide accounting services for non rural clients too.

Quinn Wilson, Restaurant Owner, The Wagon
What Our Customers Think

Rural Accountants is a real asset to our business.

The team at Rural Accountants pretty much manage all our administrative tasks for the group including payroll and tax planning, ensuring we don’t pay any more than necessary. They are at the forefront of technology and have helped us get up and running with Xero and Figured which is much more efficient than the way we used to work.

Sam Jones, Managing Director, Sybton Farm Ltd Partnership
What Our Customers Think

Christine is very knowledgeable, great to deal with and knows our business well. She is also a sheep & beef farmer so knows the industry really well and understands our needs.

Rural Accountants keeps us on track through strategic and forward planning meetings throughout the year. Christine knows our business inside out so she can deal with our questions instantly.

Mathew & Gemma Barham, Hawke’s Bay Farmer of the Year 2012
What Our Customers Think

What Our Customers Think

I used to work out my GST and process it manually which would take me at least a full day every two months. The team set up reconcilliation rules and other quick tools, and showed me how to do all my reconcilliations and process my GST returns through Xero which now takes me no time at all!

Mike O'Neill, Financial Services Northland Ltd
What Our Customers Think

As a farmer, Christine understands our business and how farmers and growers operate.

We use Rural Accountants to provide a full accounting service to an orcharding partnership which operates a number of orchards with a wide spread of varieties and management systems. Rural Accountants are always timely and accurate, and their annual financial accounts are extremely easy to understand and very grower-friendly.

Paul Jones, Orchardist