If you are ready to setup a budget and take control of your finances the way God wants you to, follow the steps below.
1. First you will need to list all your income and expenses, so click on the "Income and Expense" tab and print the worksheet to use as a guide. Enter all your income and expenses in the "Amount" column. You may have to use your check register or old receipts to gather information, but fill in as much as you can.
2. Make sure all amounts are monthly.
A. Calculate the yearly amount for each income and expense item you listed by multiplying the amount by the frequency (number of payments in a year) For example if you go to the grocery store every week, multiple it by 52. If you pay your mortgage every month, multiply it by 12. If you get paid every other week, multiply by 26.
B. Divide the yearly amount by 12 to get the monthly amount.
3. Subtract your Giving and Deductions from your total income to obtain your net "spendable" income. (If you listed your net take home pay, do not subtract any deductions).
4. Total the monthly expenses and list the total on the total expense line. Subtract it from the net "spendable" income.
5. If your income is greater then your expenses, congratualtions, add the difference to your savings or surplus category.
6. If your expenses are greater then your income, review your bills and eliminate the items you don’t need and reduce the items that can be reduced until your expenses are less then your income or at least match. If necessary, review the list of Ways to Save Money on the "What is a Budget" tab. Remember you must have something in savings because those unexpected car, appliance, or house bills will come at the most unexpected time.
Remember, the principle for a budget to work is very simple, you must spend less then you earn.
LIFE AFTER SETTING UP YOUR BUDGET . . . . .
After you have balanced your income and expenses, the next step you must take is to learn to live on your budget. This is often where a lot of counseling and books stop, but actually, maintaining a budget is the real key to managing your finances. When you get paid, you must divide your pay into the same categories you setup for your bills. This would be like cashing your pay check and putting a portion of your pay into separate envelopes named housing, auto, food, gifts, etc. However, instead of having cash lay around in envelopes, you can use Register Plus. Register Plus looks just like a standard check register, except that it has a column for each expense category. When you get paid, you divide your pay into each column on Register Plus according to your budget and add it to the current amount, just like you would divide cash and put it into individual envelopes. Then when it is time to pay a bill, you simply subtract the expense from the designated column, just like you would take cash out of an envelope. No more wondering or worrying if there is enough money in your checkbook to pay the bills; you know exactly what is in each column. Click on the "Register + " tab to see an example of the form.
If this information has been a help to you, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org