Need to create a budget quickly with Notta Lotta time. Here’s a simple budget form to help you get going. If you already know how to budge then you can download the Notta Lotta Simple Budget Form Here.
What is a Budget?
It’s pretty simple really. A budget is a tool you use to plan what to do with your money. Budgets can help you plan for your future, figure out where your money is going, and even help you get out of debt faster.
How does the Simple Budget Form work?
To get started you have to get a good picture of where your money comes from and where it goes. You can do this by entering the amounts in to the simple budget form you can download at the end of this post. Once you have your incomes listed you total them in the total column. This is usually the easy part as most of us only have one or two sources of income (we’ll work on multiple streams of income later).
Next, you’ll have to list the expenses. This is a little harder for most people. First not everyone keeps track of their money, and secondly, sometimes it’s hard to put down on paper all of the money we’re wasting on things we don’t really need. There will be some obstacles we’ll have to overcome to create a successful budget. After listing all of the expenses, tally them up in the total line of the form.
Total it out.
Next subtract the income from the expenses and put the total on the bottom of the page in the net income line. We’re hoping for a positive number here. This is what they call a budget surplus, a term not well known by many government agencies. If you’ve already got one, keep it. It’s a rare treasure.
Review and Adjust
So now you’ve filled out the entire first column of the simple budget form. I hope you used a pencil, because it’s time to review. If you have that negative number there are a couple of things you can do. First for most people is to take a second look at your expenses. What are you spending money on that you don’t need? The simple budget form separates your expenses into two parts. Look at what you’ve categorized as variable expenses. Often this is where you’ll find things you can cut out of or reduce from your budget.
You have a second option too, you can increase your income. Maybe you could pick up more hours at work or take on a side job. When it comes down to it, you have to be the one to make the decision.
Commit to Follow Your Budget
Once you’ve made your adjustments and have arrived at the bottom with a zero (balanced budget) or a positive number, you’re ready to put it into action. This step requires your commitment to tracking how you spend your money during the month. At the end of the month you fill out the second column of the simple budget form, recording the actual income and expenses right next to the first column where you projected they would be.
To review how you did you need to calculate the third column of the simple budget form. To do this you subtract each actual number from each budget number. This will tell you how much you varied (how close you were to hitting or missing) the budget number. No budget will be perfect. You can almost always count on unexpected expenses coming up (I wish there were more unexpected income, but it doesn’t seem to happen much to me) during the month.
Once you’ve tallied the results and analyzed it for areas you can improve you are ready to create the budget for the next month. Simply start filling out the simple budget form again, this time with the knowledge and experience of the previous month to help you out.
Download and print your FREE Simple Budget Form now and get started today!