Read on for a step-by-step guide for college students on how to make your own monthly budget!
This is a step-by-step guide on how to determine and fill out your monthly budget! Before getting started you will need to download and print your monthly budget sheet!
While it is printing, take some time to familiarize yourself with the two types of expenses used in budgeting.
Fixed Expenses Vs. Variable Expenses
A Fixed Expense is a reoccurring cost of which the amount never changes. You will pay these expenses regularly (Weekly, monthly, quarterly, or yearly).
A Variable Expense is a potential cost that differs depending on your personal spending decisions.
Now, before we begin, you need to figure out your average monthly income.To do this, you are going to compare your income over the last three months and come up with an average. On a piece of paper, write down your monthly income for the last three months. Add them all together and then divide by three. This gives you your average monthly income!
Write in your average monthly income on the "Income" line on your budget sheet!
Second, double check the Fixed Expenses that we already listed for you. Feel free to add any expenses we missed!
Now it is time to write in the cost of your fixed expenses!
Next add the cost of your fixed expenses together and write in the F.E. Total Cost.
The fifth step is to calculate the amount remaining after Fixed Expenses!To find the amount remaining, you subtract your F.E. Total from your Income. Write you answer on the Amount Remaining line.
Make a list of all of your variable expenses.Try and keep the list as short as possible by condensing some expenses into a broader topic.
Estimate the monthly cost of each variable expense and write the prices in the Cost column.If you have variable Expenses that are not addressed on the sheet you can include their price in the Miscellaneous cost.
Add together the costs of your Variable Expenses to get your V.E. Total and write it in the space provided.
Now, add the totals of both your Fixed and Variable Expenses together, the sum is your Final Total Expenses.
Finally, subtract the Final Total Expenses from your original total income to find your savings for the month and write it in the space provided.
Congratulations! You have successfully followed along and completed your personal monthly budget! By filling out a budget sheet every month you have a better understanding of exactly how much you're spending and where. The goal of creating and filling out a budget sheet is to hold yourself accountable to staying on budget. We hope that this step-by-step guide has helped you better understand how to use a budget sheet, and remember to always stay on budget!
Want to learn more about budgeting? Check out Budgeting 101 for College Students.
For more interesting and helpful articles for college students check out our College Life blog!