Plan for Financial Success
A budget helps you form good financial habits and develop an awareness of your spending. Having a budget can help reduce anxiety related to finances and school, meet short- and long-term financial goals, and develop a sense of control over your money. Make sure your goals are SMART!
Budget Worksheets and Calculators
- First, list your net monthly income sources (work, student aid refund, family support)
- Next, calculate and list how much you need to put away for savings.
- Next, list your fixed expenses (costs that stay the same every month)
- List your variable expenses (costs that change every month)
- Add up your “net monthly income sources”, “savings”, “fixed and variable expenses”.
- Lastly, subtract your savings, fixed, and variable expenses from your total monthly income sources to determine if you need to reduce spending or can increase savings.
- If you receive a student financial aid refund at the beginning of each term, try paying off your rent for that entire term.
- Use cash for purchases, try to minimize using your debit card.
Budget Websites (apps are also available)
Be careful when you’re providing your private financial information online. Look for the “https” at the beginning of the site URL (the “S” stands for “secure”) and read the privacy notices.