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How to Make a Budget

Make plans for your money so that you can meet your needs today and in the future.

Having a budget is key to meeting your needs. If you are not working, make a budget anyway. Create one budget for the money you have right now. Make another budget using information from an occupation you want to have. If you need help choosing an occupation, go to the Explore Careers section.

Make copies of the Personal Budget (178k, .pdf). You can create a budget to use now. Then make others that show how much money you might earn and spend in a few years. See how your money plans change when you add or cut expenses. You can also change your income to make a different budget.

Look at your current budget.

If you are married and/or have children, plan your money together.

  • Do you have enough for savings and the things you need?
  • Can you spend less on the things that are "nice to have" but not needed?
  • Where can you cut costs?

Sometimes people eat out less or buy fewer supplies to save money. Sometimes people learn to live without cable TV or use a cheaper cell phone.

Think about how to budget for your long-term goals. How much money will you need for job training? Will you need a uniform or tools for the job you want? Make sure you've thought about these expenses when you make your budget.

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