Written a Budget Yet?

I came across this post at Free From Broke today, listing 9 Excuses Why You Haven't Started a Budget Yet.  I agree that many people have used at least some of these excuses at different points in their life.  One big excuse that he missed is that many people think that they don't know how to write a budget.  I have come across a lot of people that think that writing a budget is a confusing, mysterious process that requires a certain format or method.

The amazing thing, a budget is as simple as a list of your income (which is often just one number, so that is easy) and a list of your expenses and spending.  Your expenses and spending need to be less than your income.  It's that simple.  The key is planning ahead.  A budget is planning your spending before you do it, which is why I prefer the term "spending plan."

My point is, don't be scared by the idea of a budget.  It is just a list of where you plan to spend your money.  Some things you don't get a choice about, like rent or auto insurance.  Some things you need but you can control the amount, such as food or entertainment.  Other items are absolutely wants:  cable television, cell phones and beer.  Work your numbers around so that that you've planned to spend less than you make, and you've made a great start.

About the Author

Kate Horrell
Kate Horrell is a military financial coach, mom of four teens, and Navy spouse. She has a background in taxes and mortgage banking, and a trove of experience helping other military families with their money. Follow her on twitter @realKateHorrell.
  • The other good thing about actually sitting down and making a budget is that you can finally find out all the things your money actually disappears on. Also, no-one remembers all of their outgoings when they sit in one sitting but the list can be added too as the following month proceeds too.