Here’s a handy guide from OCAD University’s Financial Aid Office on how to make a budget in 10 minutes (and one month)!

  1.  Track your spending for a minimum of one month
  • Use this worksheet, a notepad or app (try com) to record and categorize everything you spend for at least one month so you know exactly where your money goes
  1. Determine your current income
  1. Calculate your current expenses
  • This is where the tracking comes in. Write what you spend each month for rent, groceries, entertainment, transport and other categories.
  • What do your expenses add up to monthly?
  1. Subtract your expenses from your income
  • Is your balance (income-expenses) positive or negative?
  1. Plan your spending
  • In the planned spending column, determine how you can increase your income or reduce your spending for the month so that your balance is $0 or more
  • Try doing this exercise each month (because every month is different)
  • Include savings in your plan

*Instead of the word “budget,” consider it a spending plan. “Spending plan” is much more empowering because YOU decide how you’re going to spend your money!

What’s your best financial tip?!