Consumer Financial Education: Budgeting
A budget is an estimation of income and expenses over a specified future period of time and is usually compiled and re-evaluated on a periodic basis. Budgeting is important to effectively manage your monthly expenses, prepare for life’s unpredictable events, and be able to afford to make large purchases without going into debt. Putting together a simple budget to track of how much you earn and spend doesn’t have to be painful, it doesn’t require you to be good at math, and it doesn’t mean you can’t buy the things you want. It just means that you’ll know where your money goes and you’ll have greater control over your personal finances.
A personal or family budget can be helpful to set short and long-term financial goals and manage your money to meet them. It will help you:
- Live within your means.
- Be a smart shopper, and compare prices and quality.
- Track your spending habits and develop a spending plan.
- Plan for short-term and long-term financial goals.
- Build emergency savings for unpredictable expenses.
Get started using the Federal Trade Commission’s printable Budget Worksheet (PDF).
For additional tools to help you create and stick to your budget, visit the links below.
- MyMoney Spending Principle: https://www.mymoney.gov/spend
- How to create a budget and stick to it: https://www.consumerfinance.gov/about-us/blog/budgeting-how-to-create-a-budget-and-stick-with-it/
- Making a budget: https://www.consumer.gov/articles/1002-making-budget
The content on this page provides general consumer information. It is not legal advice or regulatory guidance. The DFPI updates this information periodically. This information may include links or references to third-party resources or content. We do not endorse the third-party or guarantee the accuracy of this third-party information. There may be additional resources that also serve your needs.