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Are you a part of the 48% of Americans arguing with their spouse about finances? It’s no secret that our lives revolve around money, and when we can’t agree on money issues with our spouse, a lot of unnecessary stress and strain in relationships can occur… which I don’t want for you.

Using this budgeting guide, money won’t be a contributing factor to the demise of your relationship. Whether you guys have never budgeted before and are complete beginners, or you just have some kinks to work out – this step by step walkthrough is going to help.

There’s a negative connotation associated with the word budgeting and I’m not really sure why society has conditioned people to fear budgeting. But I want to assure you that every negative thing you’ve heard about budgeting is probably all wrong.

So let’s just get into this, shall we?

Here’s what you can look forward to in this post:

This post may contain affiliate links which means I may earn a commission if you sign up or make a purchase using my link. Please read my full disclosure policy.

What is budgeting?

Before I go into what budgeting is, let’s just break some negative stigmas surrounding budgeting… 

Budgeting does not mean:

  • Being forced to be frugal or cheap

  • Automatically living on less or with less

  • Giving up things you want and love

  • Restricting yourself of nice things

In fact, budgeting is the act of managing your money in a way that allows you to give your money a specific job to do.

A budget is what you create that holds the instructions you have set for your money. It’s where you have laid out your income and expenses and made calculations.

monthly budget printable

How many times have you gotten paid then a week or two later wondered where the heck all your money went? Yes, we’ve all been there. And in those instances, your money has all the control.

When you decide to create a budget, you’re taking back that control over your hard earned money. 

Determine your why

Here’s the thing, budgeting is not fun for most people… I won’t even sugarcoat that for you.

So as with anything that is not fun, but still needs to get done, you’ll have to dig deep and figure out your why. It’s what keeps you going when you want to give up.

You know how you’ve tried to lose weight in the past because you wanted to get healthy, but the real reason you wanted to get healthy is so you could keep up with your kids and do your part to make sure their mommy is with them as long as possible? Your why went deeper than surface level; it’s the same concept with your why for budgeting.

I can tell you all day long why you should be budgeting, but that does you no good if my values don’t align with your values.

Sure you want to get out of debt, but why? What will being debt free allow you the opportunity to do? How does being debt free affect your everyday life?

Those are some things to think about when defining your why. You can make it as simple or complex as you need it to be, but develop a statement and make sure it’s easily accessible.

goal with budgeting

Define your goals

A budget is a tool that allows you to meet your financial goals. In order to make the most out of budgeting, you’ll want to have some goals to work toward so your budget can carry out its purpose.

It’s great to say that you want to build your savings account each month, or save up for a down payment for a house, but you have to be more specific. 

Spell out the actual amount you want to save each month. Spell out the actual amount you want to contribute toward debt each month. This will help you reach your financial goals so much quicker. 

Also, make sure your goals are realistic. Your goals should be in alignment with what you know you can realistically achieve with your finances each and every month.

Setting SMART Goals

budgeting for beginners

Example of a goal: I want to save $500 each month to save for a home down payment of $6000 by the end of 2021. 

Benefits of budgeting

  • You’ll be able to fund your savings account

  • You’ll actually start to pay off debt each month

  • You’ll be able to book that dream vacation

  • You’ll be able to give without feeling guilty

 

The list could go on and on, but I think you get the point – You’re able to do what you’ve always wanted to do, but didn’t know how to do.

benefit of budgeting

Basics of budgeting

A budget typically consists of these things:

Income

Savings

Debt

Bills

Cash Expenses

Irregular Expenses

When you create a budget in advance, you’ll have two columns: a budgeted and actual column.

  • Budgeted Column: allows you to pre-plan and estimate what you think your income and expenses will be

  • Actual Column: allows you to reconcile the actual and true amounts of your income and expenses

Choosing the best budgeting method

There are several ways you can manage your money. It just may take some trial and error until you find the system that works for you. 

Budgeting Method Features
The Envelope System Use envelopes labeled by category to organize expenses
50/30/20 Budget 50% of income goes toward needs

30% of income goes toward wants

20% of income goes toward savings

80/20 Budget Live on 80% of your income

The remaining 20% goes toward savings

Zero Based Budget Budget every single dollar of income you receive leaving $0 remaining at the end of the month

The Envelope System

The cash envelope method was made popular by financial guru Dave Ramsey, the “cash is king” guy. 

With this method, you’ll have an envelope for each of your usual cash expenses. And you can also use envelopes to save for different things. The main important takeaway is that each category has its own envelope.

You withdraw the money from your bank account when you’re paid and add the budgeted amounts to their respective envelopes. 

Your goal is always to only spend what’s available in that particular envelope, although you can borrow from other envelopes if you need to.

Benefits

decreased overdraft fees

more control of spending

able to transfer unspent money to other categories

Disadvantages

more trips to the bank

have to be more diligent with tracking spending

cash is usually stored at home

more work to make online purchases

Some people have adapted the cash envelope system to a cashless envelope system using a bank account that allows unlimited savings accounts such as Capital One 360 or Ally Bank. Essentially each savings account serves as an envelope category.

Converting the cash envelope system to a cashless envelope system is ideal for some because your money is safe and federally backed, and you can still make your Amazon (online) purchases.

However, this also requires more meticulous tracking to make sure you always know how much money is in each savings account and ensuring you’re pulling money from the right account for the right purpose.

50/30/20 Budget

50% of your income is allocated toward needs 

30% of your income is allocated toward wants

20% of your income is allocated toward debt or savings. 

a. Starter emergency fund

b. Extra debt payments

c. 401K Match

d. Investing

50/30/20 Budget

Benefits

balanced budget

financial instability protection

guaranteed fun money

Disadvantages

have to distinguish wants and needs

wants percentage = not idea for people in debt

80/20 Budget

This is a simple budgeting method that’s perfect for people who don’t want to do a lot of thinking and number crunching when it comes to budgeting.

It just requires that you figure out how much income you expect to receive and calculate 80% of that income.

  • 80% of your income consists of all your living expenses

  • 20% of your income goes towards savings which could include

a. Paying off debt

b. Building your savings account, or

c. Investing 

Example: If my income for this month is expected to be $3900, then all of my expenses for the month should total out to be no more than $3120 (3900 x .80). The remaining $780 (3900 x .20) would go toward savings, and by savings – that’s anything that will ultimately increase your net worth.

80/20 Budget

Benefits

relaxed budgeting method

increase in net worth

don’t have to track spending

Disadvantages

may have to cut expenses

takes discipline not to overspend on wants

Zero Based Budget

This budgeting method can be used in combination with other budgeting methods. The whole idea here is to budget every single dollar you receive and leave $0 remaining.

It’s best for people who do a lot of unnecessary spending and wasting of money. This is because every dollar is accounted for so you’re not leaving any room to spend any more than you’ve already budgeted. 

Zero based budgeting also helps you reach your financial goals because typically, any money that would’ve normally been left over would now be going toward debt or your savings instead of unplanned expenses.

Zero Based Budgeting

Benefits

better control over your money

able to reach your financial goals

less chance of overspending

Disadvantages

increased stress if unexpected bills show up

no balance to carry over each month

somewhat time consuming

How to create a budget

Budget Table of Contents

Click the links to be taken to the details.

Step 1: Estimate your income.

Step 2: Plan your savings amount.

Step 3: Write a list of all your regular bills - including the estimated amount.

Step 4: Write a list of any other expenses or bills - including the estimated amount.

Step 5: Decide whether you will use sinking funds and plan for them.

Step 6: Plan for any additional debt payments.

Step 7: Separate your expenses by category.

Step 8: Calculate - subtract your expenses and bills from your income.

Step 9: Analyze your budget and monitor it for possible changes needed.

As you’ll notice, I like to aim for a zero based budget because this type of budget has been the most helpful on my debt free journey.

Estimate your income

Your income is going to be the net income after taxes and deductions are taken out. It’s important not to use your gross income because you won’t even see some of that money.

Income can come from a variety of sources: employment (full time and part time), side hustle, child support, spousal support etc.

I would encourage you to only budget the income you know to be reliable. If you’re counting on income that you haven’t received in months, you’re headed in the wrong direction.

If you do receive this unreliable income, then consider it a bonus and make a small budget for it separately. And this budget doesn’t have to be elaborate, just simply enough to give that money a job to do.

Plan your savings amount

Stick with me for a while and you’ll probably get tired of hearing me say to make saving money a priority. I live by the “pay yourself first” motto.

Time and time again, people wait until after their bills are paid to see what’s left to save. Doing it that way is setting yourself up to fail in the savings department. You don’t want to be someone who only works to pay bills.

Prioritizing saving money at the top is a sure fire way to build on to your savings account each month.

An easy way to start saving money is by doing a savings challenge. Aim to save your first $1,000 then keep going from there.

One thing I love to do is automate my savings. It has seriously been a game changer in my finances. What my husband and I do is have a certain amount automatically directly deposited to our online savings account.

We use an online savings account that’s not attached to our debit cards so that we’re not easily tempted to transfer money from savings.

Write out all of your regular bills

You’re going to be listing all your bills and expenses, the date they’re due and an estimated amount of what that bill or expense usually runs you.

List the monthly bills you’re familiar with: There are just some bills you have that you don’t even have to think twice about… you pay them each and every month.  Things like rent, utilities, your phone bill, car gas etc. Write all of those down. 

List additional expenses that have shown in your bank account: Now you’re gonna login to your online banking and scroll through your transactions for the past month or two. 

Write down any expenses that you forgot to capture that are reoccurring. This is important because if you want your budget to be as accurate as possible, you’ll have to include all of your usual monthly expenses.

Write out any other expenses you may have

Cash expenses 

Your bank account doesn’t show you everything, like the fact that you regularly withdraw $40 every week to cover your morning breakfast/coffee stop before work every day. So now you’ve gotta start thinking about what you’ve been spending your cash on.

If you’re good at keeping receipts, great! Go through those receipts and write the amount of that particular expense. Think about the past month and ask yourself: What have I spent cash on in the past month?

Just write it all down and if you can’t remember exactly how much you paid, just estimate.

Irregular expenses

These are expenses that you’re not necessarily responsible for every month. They may come once or twice a year, but infrequent enough to make you forget about them.

Expenses like property taxes or your vehicle registration fall into this type. Sinking funds are the perfect way to manage these types of expenses.

Plan for sinking funds

Sinking funds will change your life and if you have no idea what they are, basically sinking funds are buckets of money that serve different purposes.

They allow you to save up for large or one time purchases/expenses over time versus having to cash flow a large expense in one month’s time.

Christmas is a popular example I like to use. Would you rather save up for Christmas all year long or would you rather budget for Christmas in November? I’m sure no one is choosing the latter.

Decide if you want to include sinking funds in your budget.

If so, you’ll want to list out the categories you’re gonna include and the amount you’re willing to put toward each sinking fund every month to reach your end goal.

Or, you could determine a set amount to spend on sinking funds each month and divy them up later.

Just know that you don’t have to contribute to every sinking fund every month.

Determine amount for additional debt

If you’re on a debt free journey like myself, this is where you’ll want to decide on a goal amount of how much money you want to put toward paying off your debt each month in addition to your minimum payments. This is extra debt payments.

You can have a general goal amount to work toward each month, but chances are, any remaining funds after all the above expenses are budgeted is likely to go toward your additional debt.

Categorize your money and expenses

Basically, what you’re doing here is grouping your expenses into specific categories. However, if you have multiple expenses that are similar, they can be grouped together.

For example, instead of having separate categories for Wendy’s, McDonald’s Pizza Hut and Papa John’s, you’ll group them in an “eating out” category. 

If you need help figuring out your categories, here’s a list of budget categories.

Subtract all expenses from income

At this point, here’s what you already know:

a. An estimated monthly income 

b. Your savings goal amount

c. Your regular expenses and their estimated amounts

d. Typical irregular expenses you incur

e. Whether you’re going to use sinking funds or not, and

f. The amount you’d like to put toward paying off debt

Now it’s time to do some calculations – All you’re going to do is take the total estimated income amount and subtract all of your expenses from it.

Income – Savings –  All Expenses 

how to create a monthly budget

Analyze and monitor budget and spending

One thing you’ll want to do is make a habit of monitoring your budget and then determine your next action tasks. 

What to do if you’re in the negative

There are 2 options you have if your budget ends up in the red, the negative.

1. You can either cut expenses in certain budget categories, or

2. Bring in additional income

When thinking about which expenses to decrease or eliminate completely, you’ll want to start with the expenses that you actually have control over.

These are things like your groceries, your auto fuel, etc. You can’t really control something like your rental or mortgage expense. However, you could inquire about budget billing for your utilities which makes your monthly bill the same amount each month based on the previous year’s average bill amount.

To bring in extra income, you can look at picking up a part time job, but it’s 2020 guys and you can totally be your own boss and control your own time.

Pick a side hustle such as DoorDash or Rover. Sell clothes you no longer wear on apps like Mercari and Poshmark.

Another way I like to earn extra money that eventually adds up over time is utilizing cash back apps. Essentially, these apps give you cash back on purchases you’re already making. My favorite apps are Rakuten, Fetch Rewards (use code C9QVF for bonus) and Dosh.

What to do if you have money left over

If there’s still money left over after you finish subtracting your expenses from your income, consider putting that money toward building your emergency fund.

Simply put, emergency funds are helpful because they serve as an additional layer of protection when unexpected and unplanned events happen in your life.

Where are you spending your money?

You should start tracking your spending. The goal  is to simply know exactly what you’re spending money on each month.

You’ll want to make sure that your expenses are worth the money you spend on them.

Tracking expenses also gives you a clue as to any possible adjustments that need to be made to either your budget categories or budgeted amounts.

Developing a habit to track each of your daily expenses is definitely one that just requires repeated effort. Trust me, I understand how difficult this may be to start… I definitely have my good days and my bad days in terms of tracking daily expenses.

But quite honestly, you really just have to develop the system that’s going to help make it easier for you to track.

Budget Meetings

If you share finances with another individual, it’s important to have budget meetings to reconcile expenses, discuss goals and review the budget.

You can choose to do these meetings weekly, biweekly or monthly. But I’ve gotta be honest, you’ll have more success meeting more frequently than monthly.

This is a great time to discuss any necessary habit changes that have to be made in order to meet the goals you both have established.

Example of my budget's complete steps

When I create my budget each month, I do a zero based budget which if you remember, that means I’m budgeting down to the last dollar. 

Usually, my budget never goes as exactly planner; however, having that foundation there makes it so easy to tweak it.

Here’s a budgeting video showing my process in how I create a budget each and every month. I use my real numbers so you can actually get an idea of how a real family (with debt) budgets.

 

Budget creation methods

Pen and paper

The best thing about using pen and paper to write out your budget is it can be completely free.

I’m a bit old fashioned in the sense that I love to use pen and paper to plan out my budget each month, but I put the 2020 millennial twist on it and use budget template printables. It just makes my budget look more prettier and uniform.

If you have no idea where to begin with writing out a budget, there are several ‘budget with me’ videos you could watch on YouTube. 

Another thing you could do is search Google images for budget templates and if you find a template you like, just write out the format on notebook paper.

create a budget

Budgeting Apps

EveryDollar

This program has a web application as well as a downloadable mobile app.

It gives you the ability to create a monthly budget each month. When you sign up, it comes pre-filled with common budget categories to make it easier for you to just fill in amounts.

But it’s so easy to add additional line items to each section by pressing “Add item.”

The goal is to help you create a zero based budget, so at the top of the screen, it tells you how much money you have left to budget. 

Another neat feature of this app is it gives you the percentage you’re spending on each category. So if your goal is to keep housing costs at 50% of your budget, it’ll show you how you match up.

YNAB – You Need A Budget

The basic premise of this app is that you create a zero based budget, giving every dollar a job. The app comes with category names pre-filled, but you’ll want to personalize it to your needs.

Linking your accounts makes it easier to work in this app. Once you link your accounts, it pulls in your balance and transactions and allows you to reconcile the balance and transactions to make sure the amounts in the app are true.

One thing that I like is that they group your categories by

    • Immediate Obligations – your “4 walls” expenses
    • True Expenses – other expenses to maintain life
    • Debt Payments – all your debt obligations
    • Quality of Life Goals – expenses that make life easier and comfortable
    • Just For Fun – expense that make you happy

This is helpful because it really goes in order based on priority so when it’s time to cut expenses in your budget, all you have to do is simply start with the lower groups first.

Mint

For Mint to be free, can I just say that this program is the TRUTH when it comes to money management.

Not only can you create your monthly budget, but you can link your bank accounts and it automatically populates your spending… WIN WIN WIN!

Mint is unique to the rest of the apps in that it helps you also stay on top of your credit. Each month, they email a credit summary and make you aware of your credit score and whether you’ve had any new alerts pop up.

Banking App

And let’s not forget about the free tools you may already have access to.

Many banks offer a budgeting component within the app. The drawback is it may not be as advanced or have a bunch of bells and whistles, but it’s an added feature with a bank you already trust.

And because of that, your account is already linked so it automatically pulls in your balances and transactions.

Keep in mind, you may have to activate this feature before seeing it’s full capabilities by actually creating a budget.

Spreadsheets

Lots of people shy away from budgeting spreadsheets because they are usually overly complicated and too technical.

Wanna know why I absolutely love supplementing with budgeting spreadsheets? Because they automatically do the calculations for me… which makes less room for errors.

You could totally create your own budget spreadsheet, but if you’re not too tech savvy, both Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel offer basic templates that should be enough to get you going.

I also have a budget spreadsheet in my shop that has a budget for each month of the year. It”s simple to use and easy to understand. Here’s a video walkthrough so you can check it out and see if it works for you.

Budget Printables

Free Budgeting Printables

Budget Starter Guide

Because I know there are some people who have to tread slowly when it comes to budgeting, I’ve developed a quick budget starter guide that feature free budget templates.

It’s perfect for beginner budgeters who may be hesitant to just jump into this budgeting world feet first.

free budget printables templates

It gives you the meat of what you need to create a basic budget each month

      • Simple step by step budget process
      • List of over 130 budgeting categories
      • Pre-filled monthly budget overview
      • Blank monthly budget overview

Paid Budgeting Printables

Monthly Budget Planner

Each and every month, there’s a set of printables I use consistently to create my budget. I’ve gone ahead and made them available to you.

They’re designed in an undated format that can be used by anyone at any time.

The layout of the printable monthly budget planner is basically the exact sequence and order of the steps I take to create my budget each month. So even if you didn’t know how to create a budget, you could start with the first page of the monthly budget planner and bootstrap your way to a budget.

Also, keep in mind that this is only a one time, very low cost investment. So once you buy it, you can continue to reprint it every month to create a budget. 

Seriously, for the cost of one meal at Chic Fil A, you can begin to organize your budget like never before and finally start reaching all your money goals.

personal monthly budget planner printables

The Money Transformation Project

I’ve gone a step beyond the monthly budget planner and created an entire system that can take you from no budget to confidently creating an accurate, workable and complete budget.

The Money Transformation Project truly walks you through every step in a way that limits confusion and stress. It’s perfect for the people who need a little more guidance than just printing templates.

It also includes tons of additional bonus printables that help you gain even more organization of your finances and your life. 

There’s so much included in The Money Transformation Project that you’ll have to just see for yourself.

Beginner Budgeting System

Additional budgeting tips

Distinguish needs from wants

I’m almost certain that I don’t have to spell out what a need and a want is, but I can’t make any assumptions here.

So, a need is something that’s required for you to actually survive:

  • Food
  • Water
  • Shelter (housing)
  • Utilities that maintain that shelter
  • Transportation, etc.

A want is anything else that just makes it easier for you to comfortably live:

  • Vacation and travel
  • Designer clothes and shoes
  • Cable
  • Entertainment
  • And a host of other things

When it comes to budgeting, first and foremost, you’ll want to make sure your needs are taken care of before you start adding in all your wants. You won’t have too much of a say so when it comes to the cost of most expenses labeled as a need.

But if you find that you don’t have the income to support all your bills and expenses each month, the expenses that are considered wants is where you’ll want to start making cuts. The amount you budget for expenses labeled as a want is completely personal to every budgeter. 

Automate Everything

Let me tell you, if you want to make your life easier when it comes to budgeting, you MUST automate whatever you can. 

Automate your savings, your bill pay, and even your personal spending money.

To contribute to your savings, set up your direct deposit to automatically send a certain amount to your savings account each time you’re paid. Doing it this way puts the responsibility on your employer and takes it off your hands.

When it comes to bill pay, you have a couple of options. 

You can set up bill pay through your bank account or

You can go to each individual bill account and turn on the auto-pay/auto-draft feature.

I especially love doing this for my credit card accounts because those late fees can be massive.. Well maybe not massive, but a good chunk of change. 

Have you ever heard that business owners should have a business account separate from their personal checking account? Your household finances work the same way. You are the CEO of your home and your personal spending account should be separate from your household bills and expenses account.

What my husband and I like to do is use a CashApp card or Chime card to hold our personal spending money, that way our checking account is only used for household bills and expenses.

And if the amount of your personal spending money is the same each month, you can also automate this process to have your employer separate that money out and send it straight to your personal spending account each time you’re paid.

Stick to your budget

Creating a budget does nothing for you if you can’t stick to it.

You have to really commit to staying on budget each month and have enough self discipline to fight off tempting spending.

One exercise that you can do to work on your overspending is each time you’re getting ready to make a purchase, ask yourself: “Is this a need or a want.” 

If you’ve identified that this particular purchase is indeed a need, the next question you can ask yourself is: “Is it possible to budget for this item to purchase it next month?” 

If the purchase is a want, then you’ll want to make sure you have enough money in your personal spending account to cover the cost of the purchase.

One of three things may happen when you do this exercise:

a. You’re gonna say nope, I need it now and go ahead and make that purchase… then feel guilty later. (Oh that buyer’s remorse)

b. You’re gonna realize you can cash flow it next month with expected money by budgeting for it.

c. You’re gonna hold off on it and plan to budget for it next month, but forget all about it and not even make the purchase at all.

This analytical thinking to decide whether to purchase something or not is the cure to your impulse spending. 

Soon after, you’ll be going to the store with your shopping list and refusing to deviate from it.

Have a support system

Budgeting is not fun for most people. And like anything else that’s not fun, it’s easy to become unmotivated.

It’s even harder to motivate yourself when your budget causes you to have to sacrifice or give up certain things. Sometimes, budgeting shows us the realization that we have to cut back on the things that bring us pleasure.

That’s where having a support system comes into play. Pretty much anything you do in life or go through in life, it’ll be much harder to work through on your own. 

Having someone who gets what you’re doing, who’s maybe at that level, who can help nudge you in the right direction… will help you be able to meet your goals that much sooner.

Sometimes we just need an ear and someone to talk some sense into us.

Always be tracking

Honey let me tell you, you don’t know what you don’t know.

If you haven’t been tracking what you’ve been spending your money on, then you won’t know where exactly your money is going and if you’re even meeting your money goals.

Tracking every dollar that leaves your wallet (or your bank account) is key if you want to always stay one step ahead. I’ll have to admit though, this is one of my biggest struggles each and every month.

I’ve tried to make it easier to track by downloading an app on my phone. You could do this too by searching for ‘expense tracker’ or ‘spending tracker’ in your phone’s app store… and the app should be completely free.

Or you can use good old fashioned pen and paper. I try to be an overachiever, HA! I have the app on my phone where I try to track the expenses as they occur. Then I transfer those expenses from the app to a paper expense tracker printable that comes with my monthly budget planner.

Create a new budget each month

Have you ever had 2 months where everything that happened was the exact same in both months? No? Me either!

The same holds true for your finances and your money. No 2 months will ever be the same.

So you should be creating a new budget each month. Expense types change. Expense amounts change. Sometimes bills are higher (or lower). Sometimes our yearly expenses are due in one month and not the next (think car registration). Event invitations – birthdays, wedding etc.

My point is, things change with our finances and we have to create a new budget each month to show what’s going on in that particular month. Failing to do so may just end up causing your budget to be in the red.

Allow for a buffer

Even if you budget using the zero based budgeting method where you’re budgeting down to every dollar you bring in, you should always leave room for a buffer.

You may find it easier to just put a line item in your budget and name it “buffer.” 

The reason you want to do this is because we’re human and sometimes we miss things. 

Maybe you forgot to cancel that free trial before the end date and end up getting charged another month. (For me, it was that darn Amazon Prime!)

Maybe you weren’t in tune with your checking account so you missed the fact that you have been getting charged a monthly fee for a subscription you signed up for ages ago.

The point is, you want to leave some room in your budget for somewhat of a safety net for those ‘just in case’ situations.

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    Commonly asked budgeting questions

    Should I budget if I live paycheck to paycheck?

    Absolutely, you most definitely should. In fact, if you live paycheck to paycheck, you could benefit even more from creating a budgeting.

    Budgeting is simply nothing more than having a job for your money – giving your money a purpose.

    You may just find that by creating a budget, you’re able to dig yourself out of that paycheck to paycheck lifestyle you’ve been living.

    How do I create a weekly budget?

    Creating a weekly or even a bi-weekly budget for that matter is pretty simple to do if you’ve already got a list of what needs to be paid for the month.

    Essentially what you want to do is write out all your bills, the due date and the amount of the bill. 

    Then, you wanna make sections on a blank piece of paper to write your pay dates. Leave enough room under the date so that you’re able to fit your bills in. 

     

    Go through each of your bills and plug them in under a pay date so that the bill is able to be paid on time. Sometimes, you may have to split the bill between multiple paychecks… but that’s something that you would determine based on the amount of your paycheck versus the amount your bills total out to.

    What should I do if I keep going over my budget?

    Your budget categories need tweaking. 

    You’ll probably want to print off your bank statements for the past 3 months and comb through each expense you’ve spent money on.  

    Categorize each expense by highlighting similar expenses or grouping similar expenses together. Then calculate how much money you’ve spent on each category.

    Go through each month’s bank statement in this same manner then find the average amount of money that you’ve been spending for each category over the past 3 months.

    If this sounds like gibberish to you, then you definitely need to sign up for the free 7 day budgeting e-course because I go more in depth with how to do this. And trust me, it’s not as complicated as it sounds.

    Free 7 Day Budgeting Email Course! Sign up below:

      What if budgeting just isn’t working for me?

      I’m gonna be completely honest with you. If budgeting isn’t working for you, then chances are you’re not doing it right. There are a number of things that you could be doing wrong, but here are a few to look at:

      • Are you setting unrealistic goals for your money?

      • Are you estimating your income too high?

      • Do you keep missing expenses in your budget each month?

      My suggestion to you is to go back through the budgeting process on this page or sign up for my free 7 day budgeting e-course where you’ll get one action task each day to create an accurate budget.

      How could budgeting change your life?

      Comment below and let me know how you could benefit from budgeting.

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      Ozella

      Ozella is a millennial wife and mom on a journey to financial freedom. Having grown up financially dumb, she learned the hard way and is now working her way out of debt. She uses The Intentional Dollar to share all that she is learning with others through her own journey.
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