Budgeting when you're affected by cancer
Whatever your financial situation, budgeting can help you understand how much money you have coming in and going out, and whether you need to make any changes.
Successful budgeting means making sure your spending is in line with your income.
We are currently updating our information on this page following the 2014 budget announcement on 19 March. For the most up-to-date information, please contact us on 0808 808 00 00.
How to budget
There are three key steps.
Write down your income from all sources, whether that’s wages, benefits, income from savings or insurance, or a pension. Add this all together.
Write down everything you spend and add this all together - bank statements, credit card statements and bills will help you. If you’re not sure where all your money goes, try keeping a spending diary for a week or two, noting everything you spend.
Deduct your total spending from your total income to see how much you’re left with. If your spending is more than your income, you have a shortfall.
If you have a shortfall, you may be able to cover this in the short-term by using savings or borrowing (see our information about savings and borrowing).
In the long-term, a shortfall isn’t sustainable and needs to be addressed. Check whether you can boost your income and look at ways to cut your spending. Divide your spending into essential and non-essential items. Non-essential spending should be the easiest to reduce. But you may be able to cut spending on essential items by switching to cheaper energy suppliers and lenders, for example.
Our information about debt has more advice about what to do if you can’t get your budget to balance and you’re running up debts.
Our online Budget calculator can help draw up your household budget.