Excel Budget Form

My wife and I have facilitated in Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace class and several people have asked me how I made my nice one page budget form. It is a Microsoft Excel file, and has everything squeezed in a very small space.

Download the form

Click this link, or right click and save as: Excel Budget Form

Detailed instructions

To use this, first go to the Settings page and fill in how often you are paid. Then fill in cell C2 with the first pay date, which is the first day of your month.  This is the worst part, so if you get past this you are good to go.

The rest is very much like the Financial Peace paper budget forms. Column B is the category, and columns C-G is how much you have budgeted for that pay period. Hide the ones that you don’t need.  Then Column H is the total budgeted for the month. Column I is how much you have spent so far this month, so at the beginning of the month these will be all zero. Now column I is all formulas, since I didn’t want to do math every time I wrote a check. So if you look at the second sheet “Actuals” you see a similar chart showing the same first 3 columns. Starting in column D, you can just enter one check per cell. So for example if you have spent $5, $20, and $15 on food, go to the food line and put 5 in column D, 20 in E and 15 in F etc. The total will automatically show up on the “Budget” sheet in column D.

Column J is simply a formula letting you know how much is left in that “envelope” for that category: i.e. Budgeted(H) – Actual(I). There is one little trick here, you can put a 0 or 1 in the first cell of columns C-G and then that column will be included (1) or excluded (0) from the Diff (J) column.  This way you can see how much you have left to spend in that category in the current pay period.

The balances at the bottom are just for checking your math: Balance H should always be zero if your budget is balanced. Balance I should be exactly the same as the balance in your checkbook.

The tables on the right side:

The allocated savings register for you to record all of your savings goals, there is a formula for percent there but that is all.

The next table is the debt snowball table. The first column is the name of the debt, then the original amount, which is not really needed except that when you call in to scream “I’m debt free”, Dave will ask you how much debt you paid off, and if you didn’t write it down you won’t know. The next column is how much the current principle balance on that debt is, and then you have a nice little percent.

The Upcoming table is a list of infrequent bills that I always forget about. I don’t think that Dave has a form for this, but I needed it so that I remember to save up for big annual bills like car registration or quarterly insurance payments.

The next section in the black box, is what I call the motivating statement. It is what encourages me to keep going, when I can look at the budget taped to the side of the fridge and see in huge letters: “We saved $3,963 and paid off $16,883 in debt” it keeps me focused on the goal.

27 thoughts on “Excel Budget Form”

  1. Thanks Jeremy, we also just finish a class of Financial Peace University. I Thank God for people (smart) like you that help people (not so smart) like me. God bless you… and good look in you new job at Google.

  2. Absoutely wonderful. I am so upset that mint.com and all htese other big guys don’t do simple income/budge forecasting as your simple (but awesome) spreadsheet does… Thank you.

  3. Thanks a bunch! Great form. Just curious, do you keep you budget separate from your daily/weekly planner? Or are yours combined? I’ve been keeping a daily planner for some time, but am just starting to budget… I’m a little worried that it will be inefficient or confusing to have the two separated. Any thoughts?

  4. Thank you for your efforts. I completed FPU 6 months ago, starting a new FPU class this week for a refresher. Can’t wait. I will share your web site with the class. I hope it helps them as it has helped me.

  5. This form look like what i have been looking for need to use it and see how it will work for me thanks for sharing.

  6. Is there a way to use the budget form when one person gets paid every 2 weeks and the other person gets paid on the 15th and the 31st without using two spreadsheets?

    Thank you!

  7. interesting and very well done. You are the master of excel. It is not quite what I wanted but yours is a lot closer than the others out there. I have a real big hack one that works wonders for me and my wife that shows the whole year and life on it….but it is not quite as detailed as yours however…..like you were saying misc. things get overlooked which is the DIRECT reason why I use a sheet where I ALWAYS see the whole year because birthdays, oil changes, family vacations, school clothes, holiday parties and all of those things are things that come every year yet I need to see them ahead of time so I know if we are going to balance out over a 3-4 month setting…plus i like to know when I will have the cash for the purchase of a car or TV. HAHA.
    We cheat a bit on the envelopes but we take cash out for groceries, restaurants, car gas, blow money and just chunk it together as all of those things kind of change and are hard to specifically budget or track and we have been doing it for a while so we kind of know where and how to steal money from peter to pay paul when it comes to trivial things like eating out vs groceries…..I ihave become such a god of the kitchen after the first two years as a ramsey fan where we were not allowed to eat anything unless it came from the cheap grocery store…so i had to learn to cook all the meals I wanted to eat at local restaurants…HAHA…..now theirs tastes terrible compared.
    I will have to do a little shining up on my excel sheet…..The best part of the Dave Ramsey learning and budgeting is learning how to use and edit these sheets between a man and wife…..it took us a few months….but once both spouses know how to read and edit the budget sheet…most stress is gone when it comes to finance.
    Anyways…sorry for the long words.

  8. Thank you so much!! I was having difficulty doing Dave’s forms on paper all the time. This will save me the headache and its free!! Thank you SO MUCH!!

  9. I started making a spreadsheet and decided to google and found your site. Thanks It is a very nice spreadsheet you created. Much better than I had started.

  10. This doesnt really do me much good if i cant save it. this is a great form but if it is stuck on read only so in order to adjust numbers i kind of need to be able to save it.

  11. I don’t understand columns K through O. In your template they are the same dates as C through G. Why is the Budget Actual Diff in the middle?

  12. My husband and I have been challenged by Dave Ramsey’s financial advice and have recommended his approach to many!

    Thank you for putting this form together, Jeremy! Could you possibly help my husband and I put together an Excel spreadsheet that has a payday every Friday as we have alternating pay days? Your help would be greatly appreciated!

    Many thanks,

  13. Cool spreadsheet. Why don’t all of the bills show up on the actuals page? Is it because you’ve hid cells? How do you hide cells like you suggested doing for what we don’t need?

  14. Hi Jeremy, thanks so much for putting this spreadsheet together! My husband gets paid twice monthly and we pay different bills with each paycheck. Is there a way for me to adjust the spreadsheet to separate the bills portion, or what do you suggest? Thanks! :-)

  15. Thanak you very much,i used this budget in a classroom exercise in project management. Regards Asief

  16. Thank you for creating this! I am not good with excel, but your instructions have helped me make a budget I could not have done myself. What relief! :)

  17. Thanks for sharing this spreadsheet. I’ve been looking for a zero-balance budget worksheet like Dave Ramsey’s.

  18. Hi Jeremy, just stumbled across your spreadsheet, which is the closest form to what I have been searching for. My wife and I bought The Total Money Makeover and found it very inspiring and we are determined to let it work for us. Due to the constraints of the programme extending to the U.K., I downloaded your form and entered last month’s details. However, I am not sure how to get it to reflect the ensuing months so that in e.g. a year’s time, I can see the progress. Please help! I would be grateful if we can speak over the phone as well. Following your response, I will give you my number or if you give me your, I will call you so we can talk about it. Again, thank you for your design and I know my wife and I will benefit greatly from the use of your form. Thanks!

    1. I did not make the budget spreadsheet to hold old months, just the current month. If you figure out how to add history, I’ll put your updated file here also if you want.

  19. Jeremy Thank you. We have five children and are always short. hopefully this will help. Also my husband and i get paid on the same day but alternating weeks. How do i modify the spread sheet?

  20. Thank you so much.

    Do you have recommendation on adding the due date for a bill?

    I tend to pay bills with certain pay checks and it would be nice to have everything right on the spreadsheet.

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