Plan your expenses
BigDeal’s budget tracker is a great way for you to keep track of your money and have a better understanding of how much you’re spending and where you’re spending it. It is a useful tool to help you keep on top of your spending and work towards your goals. Once you’ve used the budget tracker below, you can download the free budget planner to help you make better decisions with your money!
A budget tracker will show you how much money you have access to and how much money you spend within a specific time frame i.e., every week or every month.
The Budget Tracker will give you a better understanding of how much you’re spending and where you’re spending it. With this information, you’ll be clearer about what your spending habits are and what changes you want to make.
Budget trackers help to plan your money. You’ll be able to see how much money you have and when you’ll next be paid or receive a payment (from Universal Credit, Student loans, Banking overdrafts, etc). For young people, budget trackers are great during big changes i.e., getting your first pay-check or starting university. These times will bring a lot of independence and help you to feel responsible for taking care of your money and making good choices.
Everyone can use them and most people who have access to their own money will find them helpful. There is not an age range and sometimes just using these tools is a good way to predict how your money situation will change if you earn or spend more or less.
Nowadays, most people use digital banking whether that be Apple Pay, PayPal or contactless payment. This means you’ll always have a record of transactions which will help you to see how much money you receive vs how much you spend. However, if you want to know exactly what you’re spending money on we recommend you keep your receipts. This may sound boring and time-consuming, but it will help you be clear about your spending.
Online shopping is very popular and sometimes we can spend money quicker online so always remember to factor these into your budgeting too.
If you’re using cash and don’t have digital banking, then receipts are the only way to keep track of your money. Even small transactions count and all add up – so factor in all the money you’re spending within that week or the month!
A budget tracker is a great way to achieve goals such as saving money or working towards a purchase that you are really looking forward to. The tracker supports your goals by giving you a clear understanding of what money goes in and what money comes out of your account. This can help to ensure that you are on track with the plans that you have for your money.
A budget tracker will break down and show you how you’ve been spending your money over the last week or month.
A budget planner will help you to plan forward and explain how you’re going to spend your money over the next week or month.
You can just use one of the tools however using both will help more. If you do a weekly or monthly tracker, you’ll be able to notice the changes you’ve made or changes you still want to make. You can come back to the tracker and planner at any time, especially if there are changes to your circumstances (i.e., have more money or overspent on something).
Fixed costs are expenses that remain the same. For example, rent, utility bills, memberships (gym, Netflix, Apple Music, Spotify), insurance and car repayments.
Variable expenses change from month to month. This could be groceries, petrol, clothes shopping, repairs.
Step1: Define clear goals – this is a great place to start e.g., wanting to buy a new pair of shoes.
Step 2: Acknowledge how much money you have and the date that you receive that money e.g., on the 1st of July I will be paid/given £200.
Step 3: Note how long you need this money to last you e.g., I get paid £200 on the 1st of August so this will last 4 weeks.
Step 4: Figure out what your essential purchases e.g. (work shoes) vs desirable purchases (Latest trainers) are – Note, for your desirable purchases, do you need them or just want them? If you are managing your money correctly, your essential purchases will be made first.
Step 5: Is there any money left? – We recommend that if you have any money left, this is put into a savings account (towards a holiday, a car etc). When suitable, you can use a sensible amount of money on other activities you would like to do e.g., going out with friends, making game purchases etc.
If you have any questions on better understanding your money, you can speak to an adult that you trust. Additionally, at GamCare’ s Young People Service, our Support Leads also provide help and advice on money management. You can also call the National Gambling Helpline (run by GamCare) 24 hours a day for free on 0808 8020 133.
For further information, you can also visit the following websites:
“I did have a few close friends express concern, they thought that I was gambling a bit too much and asked if I thought I might be addicted. I remember almost laughing it off with them and saying that I was fully in control”