Budgeting. Now I know it’s not as fun as blowing that fresh pay check at the mall or going online shopping crazy, but believe me it’s just as important!
Making sure you have enough money to do all the things you want to do while still saving money and being able to pay the bills is essential.
Because lets be honest, sometimes you’re going to want to dip into your savings to go see your favorite band perform.
And although that may be okay when you live at home, once you’re on your own that savings is all you’ve got. So you have to make sure you don’t blow it!
There’s nothing worse than seeing that your automatic bill payment failed because you accidentally spent too much money at Forever 21.
Been there, done that, and it is not fun!
Whether you’re a struggling college kid living in a dorm room much too small for your liking, kicking it in your parents place, or already out on your own, EVERYONE needs a budget.
So grab a pen and some paper because it’s time to get your budget on track!
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Which means at no extra cost to you, I will be compensated when you use my links. You can read more about our disclosure here.
Set Your Savings Goals
Before you even create your budget, write down EVERYTHING you want to save for. Budgeting isn’t just about making sure you have enough money to spend at the current moment, you need to be saving for the future too!
- New date night dress
- Winter boots
- Spring break vacay
- New phone
- Holiday events
- Apartment (moving out of the fams house!)
- New car
- Overseas vacay
- Future home
Bonus Tip- The Qapital app lets you save for multiple things at once so you can keep all your savings goals organized. No more guessing what money goes with what goal! Plus if you use my link you’ll get a bonus $5 for free after your first deposit has been made!
Create Your Budget
#1 Budget for the main necessities. These are things that HAVE to be paid and apply to the household.
- Gas Bill (for the house)
- Water Bill
- Electric Bill
- Wifi Bill
#2 Budget for the non-household necessities, or things that only apply to one person individually (if you live with a significant or roommate).
- Student Loans
- Phone Bill
- Car Insurance
- Credit Card Bill
- Gas (car)
#3 Budget for everyday spending money
- Toothpaste refill
- Cup of Coffee
- Girls Night Out (drinks and Ubers can get pricey)
Okay so what does that look like broken down into bi-weekly paychecks?
Here is an example of how a bi-weekly paycheck could be broken down for all your monthly expenses if you lived in an apartment.
Now depending on where you live, or if you have a significant other or roommate who will be splitting the costs these numbers will vary. But for this example, I’m going to use some random numbers and my current situation (living with a significant) to give you a visual.
Keep in mind that things like utilities (water,gas,electric) and paychecks may very from month to month. So my number one rule in budgeting?
ALWAYS budget for your LOWEST possible income and your HIGHEST possible bills.
If your budget can accommodate those numbers, you will always have enough money to go around!
Paycheck #1- $1200 in combined checks (expenses that occur from the 1st-15th)
- Rent – $700
- Gas Bill (home) – $50
- Water Bill – $50
- Gas (car) – $60
- Spending Money – $50
- Groceries– $75
- Student Loans– $150
Total Expenses– $1,065
Leftover Savings/ Spending Backup– $65
Paycheck #2- $1200 in combined checks (expenses that occur from the 16th-31st)
- Electric Bill– $70
- Wifi Bill– $60
- Phone Bill – $50
- Groceries – $75
- Gas (car)– $60
- Car Insurance – $100
- Credit Card Bill– $60
- Spending Money– $50
Total Expenses– $525
Leftover Savings/Spending Back Up– $675
If you take some time at the beginning of every month to set up your budget, you won’t even have to think twice when it comes to having enough money for all your expenses!
Oh and if you want to save some extra money at the grocery store, grab the Ibotta app and get cash back on your food AND beauty items that you buy. Now you’ll be MAKING some extra money and killing the #adulting life! (Plus you get $10 for FREE just for signing up!)
Bonus Tip- Keep your monthly budget in your phone or written down in a notebook so you can refer back to it when payday comes around.
Allow Some Spending Money
You’ll notice that I automatically budgeted for spending money.
Bonus Tip- Have a separate checking account to hold your spending money so you aren’t tempted to over spend.
Save For A Rainy Day
Now if you can’t quite think of anything to save for yet, don’t just spend all your extra money.
Take A Deep Breath
Okay I know that may have been a little overwhelming. Especially if you’ve never created a budget before. But breathe! Now that you know the steps to creating a budget, all you have to do is mold it to your current situation.
Take a few minutes, grab some coffee, put on your favorite song, and tackle your budget like a boss!
Need Some More Money Advice?