The task of setting a budget can be quite painful, especially when you haven’t stuck to a budget before. I’ve been there, we went week-to-week without knowing ahead of time what we had to pay and how much money we had to spend. Grocery shopping became difficult because bills started to pile up and bills got behind. Setting a budget has helped us to pay all of our bills on time and still have money for groceries and extras every single week.
The trick to setting a budget is knowing your income and necessary expenses each week or month. It helps to track your spending before and after setting up your budget so that you know where your money is going. I have tried many systems to work out a usable budget for my family, and not every system works for every family. The best budgeting tool I have found is keeping a written record of my monthly expenses as well as receiving paper bills to physically keep track of payments to be made.
What Do You Need to Start a Budget?
- A list of recurring bills
- Your weekly/biweekly income(s)
- A list of savings goals you may have
- My Budget Planner Printable
Let’s Get Started
The key to success with budgeting is sticking to it. It can be difficult at first while you’re getting used to following a stricter spending plan, but when you start seeing the progress you’ll know it was all worth it.
- You’re going to start by filling in your income, if you don’t know right now just fill in an estimate and when you have a solid number you can change it.
- Fill in the balance of your current savings and your current debt total.
- Next, fill in all of your bills on the budget planner under estimates. Some of these totals will be different when you actually pay them, so don’t fill in the actual amount unless it is a static amount monthly.
- Total up all of your estimates, you’ll come back to this form to fill in the actual amounts as you pay the bills during the month.
- Fill in the estimated total at the bottom of the page.
- Track your bill due dates, estimated amounts, and actual amounts on the Bill Summary Page.
- Track your spending with the Spending Tracker Worksheet to see where any of your excess is going.
You’ll want to keep your Budget Planner handy throughout the month so you can refer to the Bill Summary page for due dates. It is helpful to keep a binder just for your Budget Planner and actual bills.
If you have any other questions feel free to contact me through the link at the top of the page, or just leave a quick comment.