Budgeting (planning your income, spending and savings)
Budgeting will help you keep in control of your money and can help you avoid getting into debt (needing more money than you have).
Here are some simple steps to take when planning a budget.
- Be honest - if you don't put down everything you will only be fooling yourself.
- Take it seriously - learning how to budget helps you live with whatever money you have
- Work out your income and spending - make a list of the money you get each week or month and what you need to spend it on - food, rent, pay bills etc.
- Make sure you account for everything - you will need to plan for bills which are paid at different periods (not just monthly). Also try to leave some money for emergencies.
- Check out if you can get any grants or benefits - your local Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) will be able to help you.
- If you have any debts you will be able to work out how much money you have left over to put towards paying back money you owe to people.
If what you are spending is more than you are getting in:
- Check to make sure that you are getting all the help you can - benefits from the government, allowances or other funds.
- See if there are any things you can cut back on - but make sure these are not things like food, heating and water.
Don't be afraid to ask for help.
The Money Advice Service is a free impartial service and has lots of information and practical tools on their website.
All the contacts listed below can offer you help, advice and information.
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