If you’re paid weekly, knowing how to write a weekly wage budget that works for you can feel like putting together a jigsaw puzzle. It can be difficult to put together a puzzle without knowing the whole picture – and the same goes for budgeting when you get paid weekly!
Although the idea of getting paid weekly may seem ideal, it actually makes budgeting a little more complicated. Receiving money in small increments can make it difficult to pay bills on time and make sure you have enough money saved for the following week.
If you are paid weekly, you are not alone! more 30% of Americans Get paid every week! And you can bet some of them have learned how to make a weekly budget work for them.
Today I’m breaking down the exact steps of how to budget when you get paid weekly. I hope these steps help make weekly budgeting doable for you.
Step 1: Know your paydays.
Get a monthly calendar and write down each day you receive payment. Better yet, write down how much money you’ll make each payday as well. This will help you visually see how much salary is needed to cover each bill.
Designate each salary a separate color. Then mark your paycheck with its designated color. Color coordinating your budget will help you know how you will be able to divide your salary to cover your expenses. This is a great strategy, especially for visual learners.
Step 2: Add your invoices to the same calendar.
Once you add your paydays to your monthly calendar, add your bills, too. You’ll need to know which bills you have to pay and in what weeks so that you don’t fall behind on any of your payments.
If your bills change from month to month, be extra careful, so you don’t miss the due date! In fact, set up your bills on auto-draft to make sure you don’t incur any late fees. If you’ve ever had to pay late fees, you know how annoying it can be!
Step 3: List all other expenses.
Get another piece of paper and list your regular expenses for each week. This should include variable expenses such as groceries, gas, and spending money. Divide these expenses by how much you spend each week. You might spend $600 on groceries each month, which would add up to $150 per week.
Having difficulty thinking Everything To include in your budget? Go back to your previous two bank statements and comb through all your spending. Categorize your expenses into categories like food, gas, beauty, etc. By looking at your past spending, you are more likely to include all categories in your budget.
You may be shocked by some of the numbers. If you see areas where you’re spending more than you expected, take this opportunity to try to cut those extra expenses. Groceries and eating out tend to be a big problem for most people, and eating more can reduce that monthly number.
Step 4: “Allocate” your salary to cover your bills and expenses.
Once included everyone With your bills on your budget calendar, it’s time to allocate your paycheck to cover certain bills and expenses. To do this, you’ll need to highlight the bills you’ll pay using specific paychecks. If you plan to pay your electricity bill with your green paycheck, shade your electricity bill in green.
Make sure to set aside some of your checks to help partially cover bills in the coming weeks. Some of your larger expenses, such as your mortgage, may need multiple paychecks to cover.
One way you can easily save this money is to move the money you need to set aside into a separate checking or savings account. You can also name this account “Bills” because you know it will need help covering any bills you have next month!
If you set up automatic payments, try to include some reserve funds (money in the account at all times) in your billing account so you always have money ready for payments.
Here’s an example of what your budget calendar might look like:
Step 5: Write down your weekly budget.
The final step is to actually write down your weekly budget. Since you get paid every week, it makes sense to create a new budget each week. Fortunately, this shouldn’t take long Absolutely. The more you work on writing a budget, the faster it will take place!
Print four copies of the budget page – I personally use the one in my life planner. You can write the dates at the top of each page. Use this page to track your budget each week. You can even staple all four together and hang them on your refrigerator! This way, you always have new reminders of what your spending should be.
The goal is to write down a budget each week that you can stick to!
What happens when you have a lot of bills due at once?
What do you do if your electricity, mortgage, cell phone, and Internet bills are due in the same week? If this is the case for you, it is time to contact each company and ask them to postpone your due date.
Take time to explain that it will be easier for you financially to move the due date by a week or two. Most places will gladly do this for you, especially if they think it will help you pay their bills on time! When you are able to spread out your bills throughout the month, you won’t feel overwhelmed when it comes to paying your bills.
What if you don’t have enough money to cover everyone Your bills?
If you’ve reached the point where you’ve set up your weekly budget, and you still have a lot of bills or expenses, you have two options. Here’s the truth: you can’t hide from basic mathematics. You need your income to be greater than your expenses, period. Otherwise, you will slowly start to go into debt or suck money from your savings.
Option 1: Find ways to cut items or money in your budget.
If you can’t cover all your expenses, one option is to cut back on items and spend outside your budget. One easy way to spend less each month is to review all of your bills and ask yourself the following questions:
- Can I cancel this bill or subscription?
- Can I call and negotiate this invoice to get a better price?
- Should I shop around to get a better price?
By asking yourself these three questions, you’ll find ways to lower your monthly bills. Need more ideas and help? Check out 25 things to cut from your budget today and 5 ways to stop living paycheck to paycheck.
Option 2: Increase your income.
If you don’t have any additional expenses to cut from your budget (or if you don’t want to cut anything from your budget), it’s time to increase your income! Check out 15 Ways to Earn an Extra $500 Every Month for ideas on how to increase your income!
Quick tips to make your weekly budget easier.
Budgeting when you get paid weekly doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are some tips to make budgeting easier:
- Remember that some of the money you have left over for this week should be rolled over for future weeks. that it OK To have money left in your budget – that’s a good thing! When you have money left over, you will be more prepared for those upcoming bills and expenses in the future.
- Create a separate checking account dedicated to paying bills. This way, you can transfer money to your separate account to help cover any future bills. Creating a separate checking account will pay bills more frequently Easier!
- Set up a weekly budget meeting with yourself or your family. This could be a short 20-minute meeting where you pay any bills, write out your upcoming budget, or track your spending. Make these budget meetings a priority by adding them to your weekly calendar!
- Remember that you need time to adjust to the budget. I am a firm believer that budgeting takes at least 3-4 months to get used to. You will miss expenses every now and then, and Good. Give yourself some grace because you are in this for the long term.
The bottom line on weekly budgets
The budgeting process when you get paid each week may seem more complicated, but it may be easier than you think! By following these five steps on how to set a weekly wage budget, you’ll be able to write an excellent budget that works for you and your family!