Get an accurate picture of your total monthly income.
Income is the foundation of your budget. It allows you to pay bills and cover your monthly expenses. So, it’s important to know how much money you really earn each month, in order to build a balanced budget. Income is more than just the paycheque you receive from your primary job. You may receive income from a side business or freelance work that you do. Depending on your age, you may receive a pension. So, your income may be more than just a paycheque each month.
To help you construct an accurate budget, we’ve created this income worksheet. You can simply refer to the table below or you can download or print a copy of the worksheet to fill out.
NOTE: Budgeting is often most easily done month-to-month. So, all of the totals listed below should be listed as the monthly total that you receive. If you receive quarterly or annual income, you should divide that amount by 4 or 12 respectively.
|Income Sources||Weekly / Bi-Weekly||Monthly|
|Your Wages (net, take home)|
|Spouse’s Wages (net, take home)|
Increasing your income to balance your budget
If you find that you cannot balance your budget because you spend more than you earn, you essentially have two options:
- Reduce your expenses
- Find ways to increase your income
If you’ve cut everything you can from your budget that’s not necessary and you’re still in the red, it may be time to explore options for increasing income. These tips may help:
Ask for a raise
Studies show that most workers fail to ask for wage increases often enough. As a result, they are often underpaid. Many times, it’s just about asking. Make a list of the professional contributions that you make to your company and ask for a raise. If your company isn’t willing to pay you what you are worth, it may be time to look for a new position.
Assess your skills for a side business
If you work as a creative professional or in a capacity that is suited to consulting, then you can freelance on the side or start a consulting business. You can also turn hobbies, such as sewing, typing or handiwork in a side job.