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How to Make a Budget

Structuring a successful budget is of average difficulty and takes no more than 3 hours. It represents the first step that should be undertaken for a successful financial planning.

Try to follow the proceeding 10 simple steps:

  1. Acquire a canned budget sheet
  2. In order to make your expenditure fit into the worksheet, examine your check book and bills to correct the categories. The data should be from the last two to three months. Don't forget that your hobby and habits can be also included as a type of expenditure if you manage to present them as a legal expense. So make the appropriate considerations and include a category for them.
  3. Calculate your monthly average gross pay, the interest on income, bonuses, dividends and any other extra income.
  4. Your expenses that are stated in each category should be covered by a realistic enough budget amount. Try to determine those amounts and at the same time stick to the established spending levels that you aim at in order to allocate money.
  5. After the satisfactory completion of the previous step, you are ready to fill in your last month's expenditures from your checkbook.
  6. A constant supervision of your month's expenditure should be made in order to put them in the specific categories they correspond to.
  7. The categories that include the income and expense amounts should be subtotaled.
  8. In order to receive you net income, from the total income subtract your total expenses.

    If you get a negative result, this signifies greater outflows of money than the inflows supply. This means that you should change your spending habits and reconsider your purchase priorities.

    A positive result signifies greater inflows of money than the outflows resulting from your spending. This means that you should transfer money to a savings account or invest them in any way you consider beneficial. 

  9. After you have acquired the information from the previous steps, you can analyze the points where you can reduce your spending and thus increase you savings allocation. Take a careful look at the categories you have specified and search for ways to make cuts in each of them that coincide with your overall goals.
  10. Monthly review and update your budget and corresponding expenses.

Final Piece of Advice

When specifying your categories, try to customize them to fit your expense needs. The use of another person's categories may not be appropriate for your financial condition. Include in your categories that amount of information that is neither too much nor insufficient. Finally, you should deal with your budget as a way of saving money and reducing your debt liabilities.

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