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KASHbrand does not offer support on the subjects that are in Tutor Time. This is information and programs on subjects that have been researched and gathered.
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                                                   What is a Budget?
A budget is a planning tool that helps you keep track of how you spend your money.
It includes an estimate of your expenses and the way you expect to pay for them.
A budget is based on your:
Income - the money you earn and/or receive.
Expenses - the money you spend for food, utilities, etc
                                                                                       Budgeting helps you spend wisely and save money.

To create a budget:
First, print out our Budget Worksheet (coming). If you have limited access to a printer, use a sheet of paper or spreadsheet application such as Microsoft

Next, determine your total monthly income by adding up your monthly take home pay and any other income, such as alimony. (To review adding and
multiplying, see our Math Basics course)

Decide what percent of your monthly income you want to save each month. It's recommended that you save 10 percent. However, determine the amount
that's best for you.

List all of your expenses such as rent or mortgage, car payment, groceries, entertainment, books, etc. Some of these expenses are the same amount each
month while others vary. For those that vary, you want to try to budget a set amount for each month.Review past bills and receipts to come up with an amount
you spend each month.

Subtract your expenses from your total monthly income. Use the calculator below to calculate your budget or use Microsoft's calculator which can be
assessed from the programs menu. Your expenses shouldn't exceed your income. If they do, you need to reevaluate your spending habits.

To reach specific financial goals, put a set amount into your savings and/or investments.
                                                                                                                          A Sample Budget
Let's look at how Vanessa creates her budget:

Vanessa's monthly paycheck earnings after taxes is $1,733. She also receives $400 a month in alimony from her ex-husband. She adds that to her monthly
paycheck earnings to get a total monthly income of $2,133.

Vanessa wants to see how much she might save if she saves 10 percent of her monthly income, so she calculates: $2,133 X .10 to get $213.30. (If she
saves this amount regularly, at the end of the year she can save more than $2, 559). Instead, she decides to save $300 per month or more than 3,600 per

Next, Vanessa adds up her fixed expenses: rent $800, car payment $250, cable TV $40, Internet access $35, and car insurance (average per month $30)to
get: $1155.

She decides to set her variable expenses, which include utilities, phone, groceries, entertainment, car maintenance etc. at $600 per month.

Vanessa subtracts her expenses: $2,055 from 2,133 to get $78. The $78 that remains is her discretionary cash. Since Vanessa will likely have some money
left over after taking care of her expenses, she decides to put a bit more into savings.
Following a Budget
When you are finished, print out your budget and compare what you are spending to the following basic budget guideline.
Is your spending within the guidelines?

Your initial budget may change as you learn more and more about money matters. In the short term, it will get you thinking about how you spend your money.
                                                                                                                       Be a Wise Consumer
Being a wise consumer can help you stay within your budget. Here are some cost-cutting tips:

Look for ways to reduce spending. Consider a less costly telephone plan, use coupons when you shop, or eat out less.

Search for the best buy. Sometimes it's better to spend time than money.

Be aware of where your money is going and plan ahead to better handle unexpected expenses.

Look for free items. Borrow books, CDs, and videotapes from the library versus buying (or renting) them. Workout at home or use public exercise facilities
instead of getting an expensive health club membership.

Consider shopping at thrift shops, consignments shops and other places that sell used items.

Don't pay for services you can do yourself.

Say no to impulse shopping. Ask yourself if you really need this item or if there something else you want more.

If you can, avoid using credit cards since buying on credit ties up future income.

Watch out for money drainers - items that you buy on a regular basis that can eat up a sizable part of your income. For example, 50 cents a day for a can of
soda can add up to more than $125 a year. Think about things you buy regularly that may be money drainers (such as snacks, magazines, etc.) Consider
saving that money for something else.
                                                                                                                                     Try It!
Figure out how much would you spend per month if you spend $40 a week eating out. How much money could you actually save per month?

If you figured correctly, you got $160 as the answer. That's $1,920 per year!
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