In the recent weeks I have put myself to the task of creating a budget. I have recently realized I need to know how much money I actually make and where it is going. At the start of the new year, changes in my life have pushed me to needing to manage my money better than I have in the past. Creating a budget has allowed me to make many discoveries, such as subscriptions I forgot I had and realizing how much money I actually make each month.
There are seven steps to creating a budget.
- Go through your account history (I suggest about five months) and note your biweekly or monthly income, depending on your pay schedule. Find the average you make in a month. That is what you can base your monthly income on.
- Once you know your average income, find out what bills you pay and how much each of them is. These bills could be rent, music subscriptions, car payments, etc. List these out on paper or a spreadsheet, whatever your preference is.
- Figure out how much you spend each month on necessities, such as food, gas, personal hygiene items, savings, pets, etc. List these out below the bills. Also make sure to base these off of how much you spend monthly.
- Add up the bills and necessities, then find how much you’re spending each month. Then take that out of your monthly income. Notice how much you have left.
- Depending on whether you came up with extra money or a negative number, you can adjust the numbers.
- If you have extra, maybe add in some “fun money” to give yourself some extra money in some areas where you may have underestimated or add it to savings.
- If you realized you didn’t have extra, look back and see where you can cut spending.
Creating a budget is an important step in figuring out finances. It allows you to be able to see where your money is going, and whether te spending is necessary. Once you control your finances you have the ability to be better in control of your life and are setting yourself up for success.