How to Set Up a Budget

  1. Add up all the income you get each year, from your job, dividends, interest, gifts from family, everything. Allow for tax. Divide the total by 52 to give you your weekly income.
  2. Make a record of everything you spend. Check your bank statements to see your spending patterns. Think about big items that only come up once or twice each year.
  3. Work out a budget. Use a budgeting template from Google or from a government website (there are plenty). Make sure your budget is realistic, if you spend $30 on drinks, don’t put down $20.
  4. Add up your budget. If your spending is more than your income, try to find ways to bring your speding down or increase your income.
  5. Test your budget. Continue to track your spending. At the end of the month, if you find you have more or less savings than you expected, try to figure out the reasons for this. Update your budget and adjust your spending or saving pattern accordingly.

Knowing how much you can save, you can work out what date your goals will be met. Write your goals in a notebook as well as beside your budget.

If you’re the type to be tempted by having spare cash sitting around, consider putting it into a term deposit so you can’t get at it until you have reached your goal.

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