Isabel Leverrier September 28, 2020 Budget
Determining a monthly and annual budget is vital in securing one`s financial future. Look for financial planning software that is capable of creating an easy to read picture of your budget restraints and financial life. Online tools that cost little to nothing tend to be a good option for starting a financial journey and determining budgets and annual financial concerns. Using a budget calculator is a good way of figuring out where your money goes, and where it should go in the future.
What I like to do now with this information is use it for the start of my budget. Now that you know where you are spending your money, you can develop some financial goals. Do you want to get out of debt? Do you want to save for a wonderful vacation? Do you want to save more for your retirement?
First of all, at the top of the list is your income which can be divided into 2 categories: paycheck and other after-tax income. These are the only categories in the income part of the calculator. The rest is occupied by various categories of expenses. The first category of expenses is housing expenses which include the following subcategories: Property (mortgage/rent/property tax), Utilities (Gas, Water, Electricity), Phone, TV and Internet.
Work out your total income for a set period of time, usually a week or month, and then subtract your expenditure for that time period. This helps you to work out if you have a shortfall or spare money and from there you can work out what action you need to take, whether it is to cut costs or to save more.
The financial planner will help you to determine which payments require regular payments and to build up reserves for unexpected payments. The regular payments include; rent payments, grocery purchases, tuition payments, credit card bills and general upkeep expenditures. It is wise to note that everyone has varied financial needs, and you should, therefore, structure your budget to include all your personal expenditures. Hospital bills are one of the payments which are unexpected because people do not plan to fall ill. Once you have calculated your regular expenditure, you can create a reserve amount to cater for unforeseen payment requirements.
As far as money allotted for paying down debt like credit cards and student loans, you can shave a little off of savings until the balances are paid down or paid off completely. It is important with credit card debt to pay more than the minimum amount due, otherwise you are paying mostly interest and very little of your balance. Student loans however can be paid off in minimum payments without costing you enormous interest rates.