Top 3 'Loud Budgeting' Habits That Savvy Gen Zers Are Using Now

If you’ve spent time on TikTok in 2024, or read any personal finance blogs, you’ve probably heard of “loud budgeting.” This concept of being vocal about financial goals has become a sensation among Gen Zers who want to save money, control their spending, and increase their financial wellness.

A recent survey from Clarify Capital found that Gen Zers who use loud budgeting are saving an average of $629 per month!

Here are a few of the most popular, effective loud budgeting habits that can help you save more money in 2024.

1. Monitor your credit and bank accounts

Clarify Capital surveyed Gen Z in February 2024 and found that “regularly reviewing and adjusting finances” was the most commonly-mentioned habit among “loud budgeters” (mentioned by 51% of Gen Zers who use loud budgeting). A big part of loud budgeting is being more transparent about your personal finances — with others, and with yourself.

Regularly checking your bank balance and understanding your credit score can be a part of your loud budgeting plan. Start by signing up for a free credit monitoring service that can help you detect any changes to your credit report. These services can also give you insights into what it takes to build credit, understand the credit impact of different financial decisions that you might make, and improve your credit score.

2. Be intentional with your personal finances

Loud budgeting is the opposite of “doom spending.” Instead of spending money unconsciously, even when you don’t have enough in the bank, loud budgeting is a way to clearly express your intentions for how you want to spend — and when you want to save. The Clarify Capital survey found that the second most popular loud budgeting habit was “making intentional choices for financial well-being and goal prioritization” (mentioned by 47% of Gen Z loud budgeters).

You don’t have to feel helpless about money, and you don’t have to feel dragged down by other people’s showy displays of wealth on social media. Just because your friends are sharing photos of an expensive vacation or a fancy restaurant dinner doesn’t mean they can actually afford it; you don’t know the reality of their bank account statements. Sometimes people who show off their spending are actually just racking up credit card debt.

Sign up for a budgeting app and get a clear picture of where your money is going. The best budgeting apps can help you automatically track your spending, down to each transaction, so you can categorize your spending. You might be surprised at how much you’re spending each month on subscriptions you don’t want, or restaurant meals you could’ve cooked at home.

Understanding your monthly spending and finding ways to save can help you be more intentional. Loud budgeting isn’t about depriving yourself of what you want in life; it’s about zeroing in on exactly what you want most — and making sure you have the money to accomplish those financial goals.

3. Establish financial priorities

Speaking of financial goals: “Setting and prioritizing financial goals” ranked as the No. 3 most popular habit among Gen Z loud budgeters (mentioned by 46% of loud budgeters in the Clarify Capital survey). If you want to feel more empowered about your money, it helps to gain clarity about specific financial goals that matter most to you.

Here are a few big-picture questions about your personal finances that you might want to consider:

  • What is the “happiest” money that you spend each month?
  • What do you dread most about your personal finances?
  • What is it about money that makes you most afraid, uncomfortable, or ashamed?
  • If you could start a side hustle to earn an extra $500 per month, what would it be?
  • If you could save $100 a month, where would you cut spending?
  • If you could save $500 in a month by cooking every meal at home, would you do it?
  • If you could save $3,000 in a year by taking “staycations” instead of traveling, would you do it?

These are provocative questions that can help you connect to your deepest values, hopes, and fears about money. Loud budgeting is not easy, and it’s not always painless — sometimes you have to make short-term sacrifices and trade-offs. But what if you could give up a few things you want “now” (restaurant meals, vacations, free time watching TV) to more important things that you want “most” (zero credit card debt, an emergency savings fund, a maxed-out IRA)?

If you want help to achieve your most inspiring financial priorities, consider signing up for a debt payoff app — the best ones can help you set up automatic payments. Or get a bank account that offers subaccounts, where you save for specific goals from within your savings (or checking) account. This bank feature is like the “cash stuffing”/envelope method, but right inside your digital banking app, so you can see every transaction.

Bottom line

Loud budgeting is not a silly TikTok fad; it’s seriously good advice for your personal finances. Gen Zers are using the habits of loud budgeting to save big money — over $600 per month, or over $7,200 per year. Loud budgeting is not just a way to increase your bank account balance — it can also help you feel more confident about your personal finances, your self-worth, and your future success.

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