There are many budgeting methods people can use to effectively manage their money. For many of the people we help, the toughest part is knowing how to start. By using some easy, free budget worksheets, anyone can get started on the road to financial freedom right away. Creating a budget or spending plan is a great way to know where your money goes before you get it. Knowing where your money is going is the first step towards financial security.
“Beware of little expenses; a small leak will sink a great ship.” – Benjamin Franklin
We offer some free, interactive pdf worksheets on our Downloads page that can help you get started on the budgeting process.
Personal Financial Statement
Start your journey to better personal finances with an assessment of where you stand. Use this form to calculate your assets and liabilities to establish your current net worth.
This will be a good worksheet to start with as it will help you set some of your first financial goals, and those goals should be a critical part of every budget you create. Let this form help you figure out which debts to tackle first and where to start building more assets.
This worksheet will help you dive deeper into your debts and help you calculate exactly what your debts are costing you monthly as you set out to create a working budget.
As you document what your balances and monthly payments are, use our free payoff calculator to figure out when you expect to have these debts paid off, and revisit this as you adjust your budget to see if you can accelerate the payoff of any of these debts.
50/30/20 Budget Worksheet
There are different ways to break down your expenses, but we want to keep things as uncomplicated as possible. The 50/30/20 budget separates your spending into 3 broad categories to keep you on track.
50% of your spending will be for Necessary expenses—these are the major expenses in your life that are not essential and not flexible—your rent or mortgage payment, monthly utility bills, insurance, etc.
30% of your budget will be Discretionary. These aren’t discretionary in the sense that they are optional, but you do have some discretion in the amounts you spend in this category. Things like savings, debt payments, automotive expenses—you need to have these expenses, but you’ll want to take steps to minimize your spending to keep this category under 30%. For example, the bare minimum you need to pay to have a phone and cellular service is included in this category, but any extra spending on upgraded cellular services and features are counted in the “Lifestyle” category.
20% of your spending is designated for Lifestyle expenses. These are optional things that you can survive without, but might be important to you. This is the category where you’ll have to make some decisions and decide which of these items are most important so you can keep this category within 20% of your total budget.
Regular tracking is critically important to having a successful budget. This sheet will help you keep track of every transaction going in and out of your bank account, and give you the detailed information you need to make your budget effective.
Estimated Budget Worksheet
Once you’ve calculated your income, expenses, and debts, you’re ready to propose your first detailed budget. This worksheet will help you lay out how your monthly spending should look.
Don’t worry if you miss your budget targets the first month. Keep this worksheet going from month to month as a living document—you’ll learn over time which budget categories are more expensive than you anticipated, and where you’re able to make budget cuts and still get by.
One thing we’ve learned is that budgets work much better if things are written down. All of these worksheets give you a concrete point of reference as you live with your new budget and evaluate how well it’s working for you from month to month.
Don’t forget, a personal financial coach can assist you with any questions you have and help you create a budget and a plan to become debt free. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you need expert, confidential help.