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How to make a household budget book

make a household budget book

How do you make a household budget book? Our guide explains how to set up a budget book and tools that will help you keep it simple and accurate.

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Does your financial situation always seem complicated? Then you should start keeping a budget book. So you can see where the money goes and where you can save.

When the month begins and the wages are transferred, it usually looks really good on the account. But then the shock: already in the middle of the month money is running out. And this happens not only to people who earn on average, but also to those who earn relatively much. If you don’t keep an eye on your money, you tend to spend far too much. The result: at the end of the month you have to skimp what it takes so that you don’t stand with an empty wallet at the end of the month.

But why are so many people so stressed at all? After all, it’s pretty easy to keep an eye on your money and manage so well throughout the month. All you have to do is keep a budget book. 

Sounds old fashioned? That may be, but you don’t believe how many people get scared when they first make a household budget book and see in black and white how much money they spend (sometimes wastefully). So a budget book only brings advantages.

Benefits of a budget book

In a household book, the income and expenditure are compared each month so that you can keep an eye on your financial situation at all times and at the end of the month you can also see where there is still potential for savings. Because first write down every single coffee that you get on the way, you will certainly be wide-eyed when you see how much it has cost you at the end of the month. 

Most people often only have the big expenses in mind, such as rent, insurance, cell phone contracts and the like. If you deduct these items from your wages, there should actually be enough money left for the rest of the month. But it is often not the case. Simply because they don’t have all of the small issues in view. So it really makes sense to keep a budget book. It:

  • gives control over income and expenses.
  • stimulates thinking about consumer behavior.
  • shows where the financial limits are.
  • helps save.
  • protects against financial bottlenecks.

What types of household budget books are there?

Paper form:

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In the past, the term “household book” was adopted one to one and really kept a real book. Today, however, only very few do it. Simply because computers, tablets and smartphones make it pretty easy for us today. Of course, you can still make a household budget book in hard copy form on paper. Perhaps this form will help you to take the household book on hand every day and to write down everything important in it. If you do not want to create the layout for the household book yourself, you can of course print out templates free of charge. 

PC tools:

Of course there are also enough programs for the PC that make it extremely easy to keep a household book. For those who are too old-fashioned to have the classic paper household book and who are sitting on their PC every day, PC programs are of course just the thing for them. Here the income and expenses can be recorded quickly, so that a good overview is created. The great thing: Such programs offer extensive evaluation options that help to identify the potential savings. Recommended and above all free household books for the PC are for example:

➭ korAccount
➭ Money Manager Ex
➭ Microsoft Excel budget book

Apps:

If you always want to keep an eye on your costs while on the move, you can of course also load an appropriate app onto your smartphone to help make a household budget book. For example, if you see a bargain or something similar, you can check beforehand whether it still fits into your budget or whether there are other expenses planned for this month. Recommended apps for the smartphone include:

➭ Spending Manager – Tracker (iOs and Android)
➭ Monefy – Money Manager (iOs and Android)

How to keep the book correctly

PC programs and apps usually already provide a template for the correct management of the household book. However, if you want to keep it in a book by hand, you usually don’t know how to do it. Here is an overview of the most important points:

• Income:

First of all, you should write down all regular income such as salary / wages, social benefits, pensions, child benefit, additional earnings, etc. So say everything that you can really add to your account each month as a plus. So this does not include one-off income such as a tax repayment or the like.

• Fixed expenditure:

Next, note down any fixed expenses that are due each month to ensure your livelihood. These include rent or home ownership costs, telephone and internet, insurance, childcare costs and liabilities. This includes open bills and the installments when you pay off a loan .

• Flexible spending:

Now you should note down the flexible expenses such as for food, drugstore items, cosmetics, clothing, leisure time or travel expenses. This includes all expenses that can be added monthly, but not necessarily.

Evaluation at the end of the month:

At the end of the month, you add the income and expenses together and can see where there is potential for savings. Because often it only becomes clear to many people by keeping a household book that they spend far too much money on leisure activities, clothing and grocery shopping, for example. If you want to save money when shopping, for example, it helps if you always write a shopping list . This will prevent you from unnecessarily buying things that you may even have at home. Of course, there are also other tips to save money when shopping .

So you will quickly notice through the household book that you will be much more economical with your money and will sometimes refrain from making one or the other purchase, because you know very well that otherwise it will be scarce for the rest of the month.