Round Library

tools and resources

What is budgeting?

It can be difficult to manage on a low income, especially when unexpected expenses happen.  You may be going along Ok and suddenly the car packs it in.  If you haven't got control of your money and budget, it can be difficult to cope with this sort of thing.

It would be great to not have to think about budgeting at all and have all your finances taken care of without having to think about where the money is coming from or going to!  But reality says that if you're living on a low income, you're going to need to learn how to budget so you can be in charge of your money and your future.

Learning to budget can help you to:

  • ​  be prepared and get on track with your money

  • ​  get control of your spending

  • ​  show areas where there are problems

  • ​  help you plan for short, medium and long term goals

  • ​  help you develop a savings plan

  • ​  Show where the money really goes!

​Getting started

Some basic steps before you begin your budget:

  • ​  Know where your money comes from and what the correct wage or payment is.  This way you can check that you are being paid the right amount and that the correct tax or other deductions are being made.

  • ​  Keep all records of financial stuff.  Get a folder to keep things like shopping dockets, receipts, accounts and bills to help you work out your budget.

  • ​  Use a spending diary to record everything you spend for a week or a fortnight

  • ​  Make a budget plan with the information you have gathered.  Use the budget sheets.

  • ​  Review your budget regularly.

  • ​  Don't panic ! If your budget does not balance, call Care on 6257 1788 any week day.

Income and expenses sheet

The Income and Expenses sheet helps you work out what your expenses are and is a good general budget sheet.


Cash flow sheet

The Cashflow sheet is useful if your income varies. It can help you plan your budget, work out when you can pay bills and how much you can pay.

The "Surviving and Thriving" booklets


financial fairness for all

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