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6 Envelope System Hacks Every Budgeter Needs

Written by Grace & Silas
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The envelope system is a popular budgeting method. The idea of this is to create separate categories of necessary expenses. And these categories are represented by physical envelopes.

So here are some tips to help you with conquering the envelope system.


Important Side Note:

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If you’re in debt, then I would definitely read Dave Ramsey’s book The Total Money Makeover which you can check out here. He’s helped MILLIONS of people climb their way out of debt and have financial peace and security. So DEFINITELY check him out!

Also! He has another great book called the Legacy Journey which is a great read. Check it out here!


Start a budget

Make a budget and follow it strictly. Calculate exactly how much money is needed to pay the bills and put it into each budget category.

Assign money to the envelopes after seriously thinking it through so you are able to follow the envelopes religiously.

Start with just a few categories

This is a great tip as too many categories will only make it complicated in the beginning. You can start with very basic envelopes categories like groceries, entertainment, and gas.

This is great for the beginning. You’ll start thinking before taking money out of each envelope. Once you get the hang of it, you can expand the categories.

Spend cash only

Since you have allocated the money to the envelopes, make sure to spend only that money in the designated categories.

Do not fall into the trap of using your credit if you forget to take out money from the envelope (in fact, keep your cards at home if at all possible.)

Divide up the grocery envelope

Split the grocery envelope between yourself and whoever you’re living and budgeting with.

This way, if you run out of an ingredient while cooking, you can ask your partner to buy it for you with their grocery money. Then you can stick to the envelope method and not cheat.

Mark the envelope

When you spend money from an envelope, make sure to write the details of the money you spent. These include the date, place, where you spent the money, and the amount. Write them on the back of each envelope.

This will help you keep a record of all your spending and you can figure out ways to manage your spending more efficiently.

You don’t have to use envelopes

As envelopes can be hard to carry around, you can look for other options. You can get color-coded mini binder clips or even buy a wallet that has multiple openings to place cash (each opening can then become a category).


These tips can really help you hack the envelope system. And we hope that you follow these and are able to adopt the envelope system to help you with budgeting and saving money.

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Meet Silas & Grace

Silas and Grace always had a passion for travel. So in 2016, they started Chasing Foxes as an independent income source. 4 months after launch, they were making enough money from their blog to travel full-time, and in the past 5 years, they’ve been able to encourage others in their blogging journeys too. Learn more about Silas & Grace.

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