Whether you're living at home or moving out, budgeting is a learning experience. It is a skill that you will use for the rest of your life. Decisions about money, how much you spend, your standard of living, and balancing your wants and needs all determine how you are going to budget. These factors will affect your budget no matter how much money you make.

WHERE TO START
In dealing with personal finances, you need to stop and analyze what your income and expenses are or will be. To help you do that, fill out the Budget Basics Activity. Please note, if you are not attending school there are some items you can disregard.
This should help you start to break down your income and expenses on a monthly basis. Can you see some areas where you need to change your spending? Are you saving money?

SAVINGS & INTEREST
Saving is important because the money in a savings account earns interest. Interest allows you to make money on the money you save. Saving is a habit that you need to start forming when you begin budgeting.

MONTH TO MONTH BUDGET
After finding out where your money goes each month, use this same format to predict your expenses and income for next month. This is where you can really start budgeting. Figure out what your needs and wants are. Budget first for your needs
and necessities, then for your wants with the money left over. Don't forget to put a little money away each month to meet a special goal. It could be a vacation or that spiffy leather jacket, but reward yourself for managing your money effectively.

At the start of the new month, with your income and expenses predicted, you might break your budgeting down to a weekly and daily basis. Record how you spend money daily and weekly. This detailed record will help you find the unneeded expenses and meet the needed expenses.