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Doing a budget

Do you need to do a budget?

One of the many benefits of being a new apprentice or trainee is that you will be earning while you are learning but because your wages can be low during your training, having a workable budget is particularly important.

Going through this training phase can seem financially tough. It is tough! But the rewards at the end, once you have completed your qualification will set you up for the rest of your life. Will a nationally recognised qualification you will have the world is at your feet.

We all need to plan our finances as we go through various stages of our lives and our circumstances change. It’s not just apprentices and trainees that benefit from good financial planning. Doing a budget removes a lot of the worry and stress of what we can and perhaps can’t afford. 

Doing a budget

It makes sense to manage the money you earn to make sure you can meet the cost of the bills you have to pay as well as your day-to-day living expenses.

Managing your money is not an easy task. We often things could be better if “I just got paid a bit more”. For the majority of us that is not going to happen so the best option is to manage the money we have. 

 Benefits of doing a budget

A personal budget will:

  • Put you in control of your money.
  • Help you set goals and save money.
  • Encourage you to commit to your goals.
  • Track your progress.
  • Keeps you from spending money you don’t have.
  • Let you see where your money is being spent.

If you approach this diligently and invest a little time at the beginning, the results can be amazing. Budgeting doesn’t mean you can’t treat yourself occasionally or go out and celebrate a particular phase of your training, but budgeting simply means you know where you are spending your money and can know you meet your commitments as they come along.

Tools to help you budget

It is for this reason that we at Golden West Apprenticeships have researched suitable tools to assist you with this process. The link below takes you to the Money Smart Website which has a very good budgeting tool that you can use and update as things change.  You can do the budget online and save it for future reference, or download an Excel Spreadsheet from that site and save it to your own computer. 

For more handy tips and tools, see our News Item.

It’s up to you

It won’t necessarily take a long time for you to complete your budget but it will require some thought and maybe research. Before you begin you will need to know and work out how much you spend on fuel, food and other living expenses as well as for example car registration, insurance, life insurance (not thought about this one yet? Well it is probably about time!) entertainment etc.

I encourage you to at least have a look at the information at this link. If you take a few minutes it might set you on the right track to manage your finances into the future. Give it a try! It doesn’t hurt - except when you realise you are spending more than you really should. But that’s why you do a budget – if you’re spending too much change it. You can manage on your income, it just takes good financial planning.

As they say … it’s all up to you but DOING NOTHING is really NOT an option.

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