Hey you, my awesome blog readers! Today I want to share with you how you can create or use a budgeting template on Google Sheets.
Before we start, I know budgeting your money can be tough. And daunting at times, when you don’t really know where to start.
Or you just don’t really want to know or look at your money.
Am I the only one who will still get butterflies when checking my bank account? Even after learning and getting certified as a financial planner, I will still feel a little anxious when trying to look at my numbers.
So I totally understand why some of us dread the thought of budgeting all together.
But, budgeting can be a wonderful thing to be done to your financial planning. And I’m going to show you how easy it can be done with Google Sheets. I will share more on why exactly Google Sheets below but for now, let’s learn the importance of budgeting first. 🙂
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Why It’s Important To Budget and Manage Your Money
To make sure you are spending within your means. To not spending money on things you can’t necessarily afford due to the increase of materialism in our current society.
Have you ever been in a place where you realize –
you no longer have money in the bank,
you still have a debt to pay on your credit card,
and your paycheck had actually just come in a week ago?
I knew exactly how it feels to being puzzled not knowing where my money went even though I felt like I didn’t spend much. I’m sure many of you have felt the same way too.
The reason why we felt this way is because we have poor money management.
We didn’t know where our money went and we didn’t have a specific budget given to each place or category that our money is supposed to go.
If you’ve accidentally spent more money on dining out this month, you might not have enough to pay your credit card bills. But if you plan, budget, and spend your money accordingly, you are more likely to not end up with even more credit card debt and instead, able to save a lot more of your money.
Also, in my experience, the earlier you start this budgeting habit, the easier it is to get better with money. Not only in managing money but also managing your insurance, retirement as well as estate planning.
Simply because you understand the power of planning 😊
Different Ways To Budget Money
Software are some of the way you can use to budget your money.
I have personally tried almost every different ways out there ever since I started earning money.
When I first started, I just dribbled down some of the bills or fixed payments that I have to make once I receive my salary. And I did just that. The balance, I’m able to do or spend anything that I like. This is the system I used when I was 18 years old.
After that, I evolved to using financial planner on a notebook and the envelope system when I was in college. It was okay and did well for me for a few months before I threw in the towel. Simply because I didn’t manage to adapt and find a reason to stick to it. I always need to either bring my notebook everywhere I go or only doing it when I’m at home, which was a hassle for me.
Since I knew the main reason notebooks don’t work really well with me, I tried using apps. Apps are really convenient because they are always on my phone and I can type in and update them anywhere and at any time. I thought I’ve found something that’s a holy grail for me.
Well, I was wrong.
It didn’t stick with me. Because it lacks the flexibility that I want. They always have their own fixed templates and I don’t like them. There will be other ways where I want to see my spending and budget in an overview. And I just couldn’t do it with apps.
That’s the reason why I chose Google Sheets. I can personalized the template however I want AND I can update it anywhere and at anytime on my phone and on my laptop. It’s divine.
Why Google Sheets?
Well, other than the fact that I can update the sheets whenever and wherever, it is also so easy to customize it to your likings. You can create a budget template in Google Sheets in minutes.
I didn’t do it on Excel simply because it’s a hassle to me to get it on my phone.
I personally use Google Pixel as my mobile phone and Google products sync extremely nicely there. But I’m pretty sure it’s much easier to use Google Sheets on your phone rather than Excel.
And that just gives another cookie pointer to Google Sheets.
Apart from that, there are so many budgeting templates that you can use for free on Google Sheets. I started with those free templates too before creating one that I personally love and use, even til now.
If you’re a chart freak, you can also create whatever chart you want easily with Google Sheets. It’s just that awesome 😊
Budgeting Template Google Sheets That I Use
At first, I actually created Google Sheets expense tracker template for myself to, well track my spending. I then later on transform it to become a budgeting template.
This budgeting template is something that I personalized in accordance to my liking and how I personally like to track my budget and expenses.
It is NOT fancy.
If you want fancy, there are free budgeting templates that I will list down below. And they will have a lot more fancy technicalities that you can have.
But I don’t need those. I just need a spreadsheet that I can put the categories that are based on my spending and budget. And I really, really recommend you to do the same. Create a template FOR you.
If you want to get my budgeting template, you can do so here. Or put your details below.
You can take a look at how I build my template, you can edit and create categories, more lines of expenses based on your lifestyle.
If you want to see exactly how I use my Google Sheets, you can read my full budgeting and expense tracking system here.
List of budgeting categories:
- Fixed Expenses
- Variable Expenses
These are the top categories that I will budget. I will recommend starting with these 5 and put your OWN percentage for each money-outflow categories.
Below is MY personal take for MYSELF on each category:
- Fixed expenses: 40%
- Savings: 15%
- Investments: 20%
- Variable expenses: 25%
The reason I’m recommending you putting your own percentages is that they tend to vary from one person to another. As you get older, as you get married and have children, your percentages will change too. I just don’t believe in a one-rule-fits-all type of thing.
Everyone is unique.
However, if you’re seeing your Fixed Expenses category is getting higher or takes more than 60% of your income, then you might want to find a way to reduce it. So that you’ll be able to transfer some percentage to your savings or investments category.
Below are some examples of what needs to be under each budgeting category:
- Fixed Expenses
- Student loan
- Car loan
- Credit card debt
- Any installment payment
- Property tax
- Internet bill
- Insurance (life, medical, house ownership, car)
- Water bill
- Maintenance (house, car)
- Emergency fund
- House down payment
- New car
- Sinking fund (Christmas, birthdays)
- Unit trust/ETF/Stocks
- Variable Expenses
- Dining out
- Outdoor activities
Other Budgeting Template Google Sheets To Check Out
Does Google Sheets have a budgeting template? Yes, they do.
Here are some of the other budgeting templates that you can use in Google Sheets. I personally don’t use them because I have my own. But it’s worth it to check out others as well so you can have a bit more inspiration on how to create your own.
Personalizing Your Budgeting Template
As I have mentioned before, I always recommend creating your own budgeting template. You can also use the famous 50/30/20 budget – I have tried that one too.
But the more I learn about financial planning, the more strongly I believe in personalizing money planning. Be it in budgeting, insurance, and a lot of other money aspects.
Also, one thing that I LOVE to include in my budgeting template is a few tabs where I meticulously track my expenditure in certain categories such as groceries, personal spending and dining out.
Dining out is something that I’ve started tracking to the T and it’s jaw-dropping once you realize just how much money you have spent ordering in or dining out. And just how money you could have saved if you were to just be a bit more productive and prepare your own meals 😊
So don’t be afraid to include a few tabs on certain category that you specifically want to track. It’s your money and it’s your budgeting template anyway!
Google Sheets Budgeting Template: Next Level
If you’re like me and you’re a diehard fan of Google Sheets and just can’t wait to get started with your budgeting template, well, I have good news for you!
If you want to take a step further and making everything automated – meaning that you won’t need to put your expenses number manually, you can check out Tiller Money.
They do all the hard work for you, they can help track your accounts all in one Google spreadsheet (or Excel). Not only on expenses BUT your income too! How cool is that?!
Now, Tiller Money IS a paid subscription. You pay $79/year to use their service and it can seem a bit steep compared to other free apps out there.
But I’ve mentioned why I don’t like to use apps and I don’t like free software (other than Google stuff of course). I just don’t like ads. So paying $79 a year ($6.58/month) seems okay to me for the service that I get.
Remember, your time is money too. Instead of spending your time manually putting in the numbers every day and every month, you can get Tiller Money to do it for you.
You can give it a try for FREE for 30 days and see whether it works for you. 🙂
Ready To Budget Your Money?
Well, I hope you did learn a thing or two from my post today. And I hope this will inspire you to start taking care of your money even more diligently.
If you’d like to get started now, you can again, get my free budgeting template Google Sheets here.
Or you can start or check out Tiller Money here.
P/s: If you do find this post helpful, please help to share it around so more people will also become more aware on how to manage money like a pro – like you are now 😉