A budget is a plan that works out how you will manage your income and expenses. Maintaining a budget is a powerful way to control your money.
A budget allows you to see how much money is coming in and going out. It helps you ensure there is enough money to cover your expenses and is an effective way to make sure you are not spending more than you can afford. More importantly, a budget can help you work out how much of your income you can put towards saving for your future, without impacting your everyday needs.
Everyone can benefit from having a budget. The purpose of a budget is not to make you go without or to force you to save. It simply allows you to manage your money in a more controlled and effective way and to understand where you are spending your money.
Write down your normal income and expenses over the period of a month. Income can be grouped into categories such as work and income you receive from investments or other sources. Similarly, expenses can be grouped into categories such as food, clothes, entertainment and so on. This makes it easy to see exactly where your money is being spent.
A budget can help you decide what you want to spend your money on, and how much you can save.