Building and maintaining a healthy budget is not always accessible. However, it doesn’t have to be difficult if you keep an organized record of your transactions in one place using a tracker.
A budget tracker template is a type of spreadsheet designed to help people keep track of their expenses and income while building or maintaining a healthy budget. It can make it easier for people to keep track of their financial transactions and outcomes. This article will look at the importance of using a budget tracker, different ways to track your expenses, and how to make a budget spreadsheet.
Importance of Having a Budget Tracker
Even if you have completely mastered the art of keeping on top of your budget, there are several reasons why you should still use a budget tracker template to keep an organized record of your financial information.
Here are the expected benefits of using them:
Keep an eye on the prize
A budget tracker is essential for everyone because it helps you keep an eye on your finances and control how much money you are spending. If you are trying to stick to a budget and you don’t have an organized spreadsheet that you use to track your expenses and income, it is easy for one or two things to go out of control and cause you to overspend. A budget tracker template will help you to keep track of your income, expenses, and other related financial information all in one place.
Ensure you don’t spend unnecessarily
If you are trying to create a healthy budget, you need to ensure that you don’t spend any money. If you spend your money without looking at what you spent it on and how much was spent, there is no way that you will ever be able to stay on top of your finances. These templates help you track where your money goes and how much it is being spent.
Have a happier retirement
One of the main benefits of maintaining a healthy budget is that it helps to contribute toward a happy retirement. If you wish to retire happily, you must keep track of your financial information and monitor how much money you are saving for retirement and how much your expenses are. A budget tracker template will help you keep an eye on your expenses and income to quickly see if there are any areas where you are overspending.
Prepare for emergencies
Another reason for developing a healthy budget and keeping track of your finances helps prepare you for unforeseen circumstances that may occur later in life, like emergencies. If you don’t keep a tab of where your money is going, sudden unexpected circumstances may cause you to lose track of your finances and leave you unprepared for emergencies. A budget tracker template helps keep track of your income, expenses, and other related financial information.
Better than counting sheep
You likely failed if you have ever tried to count sheep at night to go to sleep. Likewise, tracking your budget can be a daunting task, and sometimes, if you need to get things done but don’t want to focus on your finances, it can be difficult for you to remain focused and on top of your tasks. A budget tracker template is designed to help you keep track of your finances without focusing on them.
Maintain financial control
Things can quickly spiral out of control regarding budgeting and finances. This is more so if you don’t have a systematic way of recording where your money is going, how much you have in your accounts, and how much you plan on bringing in. A budget tracker template allows you to do all these things in one place. This way, you take total control of your finances and remain on top of things to achieve your financial goals.
Make yourself accountable
Another important reason you should maintain a healthy budget and keep track of your spending is that it will make you more accountable for your actions. If you have a budget tracker and you are monitoring how much money you spend, there is no way that you can ignore finances or spend money without knowing how much has gone out of your pocket.
Keep your finances organized
Many people break their budgets and overspend because they do not have an organized record of their finances. These tracking tools are a great way to help you stay on top of your finances and keep them organized. You can keep track of various financial information in one place so that it does not become too overwhelming for you to handle.
Reduce your financial stress
Another critical benefit to maintaining a healthy budget and keeping track of your finances is that you will experience less financial stress. Keeping an eye on your finances means that you can quickly adjust your spending for the better so that you do not have to worry about overspending. It will help you adjust your spending to ensure that you don’t overspend and set you free from financial stress.
Getting into the habit of keeping a healthy budget and monitoring your spending will help you save more money. In addition, using a budget tracker will help you find areas where savings can be increased, and unnecessary spending can be avoided. These are effective ways to save money.
Debt is a common financial problem that people experience, and many people cannot avoid it altogether. It is easy to get absorbed in debt and have difficulty getting out of it. However, having a budget tracker can help you find areas where you are spending too much money to avoid debt.
If it is hard for you to stay focused on your finances, maybe it is because you are trying to look at everything at once. These trackers are designed to give you all of the information you need about your finances in one place. It’ll help you stay focused on your finances to get things done without worrying about your wallet’s amount or status of money.
Ways to Track Expenses
You can use a budget tracker to track your expenses to have a better sense of how much money is going out of your pocket each month and how much money you are saving.
Some of the tools that you can use to track your expenses include:
1. By using a paper-pencil
One of the most common ways to keep track of your expenses and income is using a paper pencil. Using paper-pencil can note how much money you’re spending per month and how much money you are receiving. When you take the time to write down your expenses, it is much easier for you to understand your financial situation and where changes can be made to avoid overspending or saving too little.
2. Envelop system
Another way to properly keep track of your expenses is to use an envelope system. When you put money into the envelopes each payday, you will better know where your money is going. When using an envelope system like this, it may be helpful to have different envelopes related to different spending categories. For example, you can have a separate envelope for groceries, gas/utilities, and other items such as clothing or school supplies. If you are having a rough time keeping track of your expenses and income, the use of an envelope system can be beneficial.
3. Computer spreadsheet
You can also use a computer spreadsheet to keep track of your expenses and income. When you use a computer spreadsheet, you can easily change how the information is listed. For example, you can place transportation expenses at the top and put other categories, such as groceries and clothing, at the bottom to better understand how much money is being spent.
How to Make a Budget Spreadsheet?
It is easy to make a budget spreadsheet, but it’s important to know what information should be included. Here is a stepwise comprehensive guide to making a budget spreadsheet to use as your budget tracker tool:
Make required columns
To make a budget spreadsheet to keep track of your expenses, you will need to decide on the categories of expenses that you want to include. This will help you to organize your budget more efficiently. For instance, you may want to include columns for the following categories of expenses:
- Monthly income
- Bills and mortgage payment
- Transportation expenses (gas, car maintenance, public transportation cost)
- Entertainment (movies, restaurants, concerts)
- Utilities (electricity, cable tv/internet service, home phone)
- Clothing and personal items
- Saving and investing money (saving accounts, IRA’s)
Mention the total of all monthly expenses
After you have listed out the categories you would like to include in your budget spreadsheet, you will want to add up how much money is spent for each category. This will help you see what area of spending is costing you the most money and where it might be possible to cut back on expenses or where extra money can be saved.
Mention your total monthly income
Another thing that you will need to do before writing your budget spreadsheet is to write down your total monthly income. While this may be obvious, it is essential to know precisely how much money you make each month to compare it to the amount spent.
Subtract your total monthly expenses from the monthly income
After completing the three above steps, you will need to subtract your total monthly expenses from your total monthly income in your budget spreadsheet. This will give you a detailed overview of how much money is leftover at the end of each month. If there is not a large amount of money left over at the end of each month, it could mean that you are spending more than you are bringing in.
Continue adding budget every month
After you have calculated your total monthly expenses, you will want to continue making a budget spreadsheet each month to see how your income and expenses change throughout the rest of the year. The more frequently you update your spreadsheet, the easier it will be for you to see how your income is being spent and where changes can be made to get some extra money each month.
Budget Tracker Templates
A budget tracker template is a great way to keep track of your spending and income regularly. You can also use them to help you adjust your spending to save more money or even earn a higher return on your investments. This website has provided several budget tracker templates that you can download and use when preparing your budget. In addition, you can customize these budget tracker templates by including separate columns for different spending categories like savings, retirement planning, and emergency funds.
Using a budget tracker regularly can be very helpful for creating and maintaining a healthy budget. Here are tips to help you get started:
- Track everything: An essential part of using these tracker tools is to make sure that you list everything you make and spend. If you receive a paycheck and deposit it into your bank account, you will want to list that. Suppose you have money taken out of your paycheck for other expenses or receive a direct deposit directly into your savings account. In that case, it is important to list these transactions as well.
- Track expenses regularly: It would be best if you were consistent in tracking your finances, whether it’s through a budget spreadsheet or an online budget tracker. This will help you get a cohesive sense of how much money you are making and spending to plan better for the future. Tracking shouldn’t be done only when preparing your annual tax return.
- Stick to spending limits: It is essential that when you make a budget, you stick to the amount of money that you have set aside for each category of expense. If you are spending more than you have allowed for an item, it should be considered against your spending limit. So, it is necessary to stick to the spending limits you have made for yourself.
- Choose what to do with the saved money: After you have prepared and created your budget spreadsheet, it is crucial to choose what to do with the money that you have saved. One effective way of using the money saved is by spending it on a financial goal that you want to accomplish.
Free Tracker Templates
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I control my spending habits?
The first step toward controlling your spending habits is to recognize that there are areas of spending that you may not need. You can identify these areas by using a budget tracker. This will help you calculate the amount of money you spend on each category.
What is an emergency fund?
An emergency fund is essentially a savings fund that can help you deal with unexpected expenses. This can include car repairs, medical bills, or even help you replace lost income. In addition, this can help you avoid obtaining loans to pay for these types of expenses.