Money is a common reason many women choose to cam. It’s not “easy” money, but with time and dedication it can mean “big” money. Big money means big responsibility. Whether you’re just starting out or need to revamp your expenses, here are some ways to help you start managing your money like a boss.
Set Up a Thorough Budget
Step One: List Your Expenses
Don’t worry about setting dollar figures on them just yet. At the top of your list should be things you need. Debt goes before savings due to the interest that most debts carry. After that, make space for savings. Your list will most likely include things like your mortgage or rent, bills, gas, and groceries.
Add expenses you have each month but could cut down on, like eating out or hobbies. Account for everything, even the few bucks you spend on snacks here and there. Don’t forget to include yearly expenses, like holiday presents or property taxes.
Step Two: Assign a Monetary Value to Each
Fixed expenses like rent or car payments will be easy to budget. Use previous bills and gas expenses to average your monthly spending. You might need to estimate other things, especially if you haven’t been keeping track of your expenses.
For yearly expenses, use the amount you spent last year and divide it by twelve.
Step Three: Play the Budgeting Game
Start with the amount you made last month and deduct each item as you go down the list. If you’re like me, you’ll need a calculator. The idea is to get to the end of the list before your calculator reaches zero. If not, go back through your list and start crossing off things you can do without. Reduce the number on any items you could cut down on. Then go back to the almighty calculator and start at the top of your list again. Repeat this as many times as necessary to win.
TIP: If your bank offers online banking, sign up and take advantage of any money-monitoring tools they have available.
Schedule Time for Your Money
Everything that’s important in your life should have space on your agenda, and that includes your finances. Schedule a time each week for accounting duties like:
- Modifying your budget
- Reviewing the previous week’s expenses
- Checking online statements & verifying transactions
- Researching investments
- Deciding how to spend windfalls (i.e. tax return, inheritance, etc.)
Prioritize Clearing Your Debts
If you have credit card or student loan debt, you’ll want to focus on paying those off as soon as you can. The interest rates can keep you trapped in debt if you’re only making the minimum payment.
A typical credit card has an APR of 22%, which translates to about $1,000 in interest payments on a $5,000 debt every year. It’s like you’re paying them money for the service of owing them money. The higher the interest rate, the faster you should pay it off.
Put debt ahead of savings. You will never find a savings account that pays at 22% interest.
Spend Less Than What You Make
If you spend exactly what you make in a month, you’ll never have room for savings or leisure.
You could spend more than you make in a month if you are investing, but always have a plan to pay it back soon. For example, if you are looking into being a camgirl but don’t have a webcam, you could buy one using your credit card with the plan to pay it off as soon as you make an income.
Aside from reasonable start-up costs, spend less than what you make and save the rest for unexpected expenses.
Open a Savings Account
If you don’t already have a savings account, you’re losing out on earning interest. For small amounts this probably won’t make much of a difference, but the more savings you have, the more the interest works for you.
Put Aside A Little Cash Each Month
Many banks offer direct deposits into your savings account each month. They take a small amount, usually $25, and transfer it once a month from your checking account to your savings account.
TIP: Keeping your money in savings long-term is the bank equivalent of having your money under the mattress – it’s not doing much. Start planning on how to invest this nest egg once it gets bigger.
Create a Motivational Savings Goal
Save for something big. What’s something that you’ve always wanted? A vintage car? A dream vacation? Going to college? Manage your savings with something large in mind. You’re less likely to dip into your savings when you see how close you are to affording that trip to Paris.
Build a Rainy Day Fund
You’ll sleep better at night with a monetary cushion in your budget. Play the budget game until you are spending less money than all your expenses, debt payments, and savings combined.
At first your cushion will start as wiggle room in your budget. This extra space is for when unexpected, expensive things happen, so avoid spending it. Soon you’ll be able to save more money. Transfer bigger amounts into your savings each month, or increase your automatic transfers.
TIP: A good cushion is about 6 months’ worth of expenses.
Plan For Your Future
The day may come when you choose to retire from camming. Additionally, you may wish to change careers or you may face unemployment at some point. Increase the size of your cushion as you prepare for camgirl retirement.
This may seem like a long time from now, but most financial experts recommend you start saving for retirement in your 20s. Putting about $400 a month into a 6% interest retirement account from your 25th birthday will earn you nearly 1 million dollars by your 65th birthday. Ask your bank for their options, but shop around too.
A Boss Makes and Manages Her Own Money
Being your own boss as a camgirl means managing your money like one, so don’t forget about the important accounting department. Managing your money is a vital key to success.