Excel Tutorial: How To Make A Monthly Budget In Excel


Creating a monthly budget is a crucial step towards achieving financial stability and reaching your financial goals. By tracking your income and expenses, you can gain better control over your finances and make informed decisions about your spending. In this Excel tutorial, we will explore the benefits of using Excel for budgeting and provide a step-by-step guide on how to create a monthly budget in Excel to help you take control of your finances.

Overview of the benefits of using Excel for budgeting:

  • Easy to customize and update
  • Automatic calculations and analysis
  • Visual representation of data

Brief summary of what will be covered in the tutorial:

  • Setting up the budget template
  • Tracking income and expenses
  • Creating visual representations of the budget

Key Takeaways

  • Creating a monthly budget is important for achieving financial stability and reaching financial goals.
  • Using Excel for budgeting offers benefits such as easy customization, automatic calculations, and visual representation of data.
  • The tutorial covers setting up the budget template, tracking income and expenses, using formulas for calculations, creating visual representations, and reviewing and adjusting the budget.
  • Visual representations like pie charts and bar graphs can help in understanding the percentage breakdown of expenses and comparing income versus expenses.
  • Regularly reviewing and updating the budget is crucial for financial success and tracking progress towards financial goals.

Setting up the Excel spreadsheet

Before you start creating your monthly budget in Excel, it's important to set up the spreadsheet in a way that will make it easy to track your income, expenses, and totals. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

A. Creating a new workbook

To begin, open Excel and create a new workbook. This will serve as the foundation for your monthly budget.

B. Naming and labeling the necessary columns for the budget

Next, you'll want to name and label the necessary columns for your budget. Consider including columns for items such as "Date," "Income Source," "Expense Category," "Amount," and "Notes."

C. Adding appropriate headers for income, expenses, and totals

Once you have labeled your columns, it's important to add appropriate headers for income, expenses, and totals. You can use the bold formatting option to make these headers stand out.

Inputting income and expenses

Creating a monthly budget in Excel requires careful inputting of both income and expenses. Here's how to get started:

A. Listing all sources of income for the month

  • Begin by listing all sources of income for the month, including salaries, freelance work, rental income, and any other sources of money coming in.
  • Make sure to include the exact amount for each source of income to get an accurate picture of your monthly cash flow.

B. Categorizing and listing all monthly expenses

  • Next, categorize and list all monthly expenses, such as rent/mortgage, utilities, groceries, transportation, and any other regular expenses.
  • Break down each category into specific expenses, such as electricity, water, gas, and so on, to have a detailed overview of where your money is going.

C. Including a section for any additional or irregular expenses

  • Finally, include a section for any additional or irregular expenses, such as car repairs, medical bills, or any other unexpected costs that may arise during the month.
  • It's important to anticipate and plan for these additional expenses to avoid any financial strain when they occur.

Using formulas for calculations

When creating a monthly budget in Excel, it's important to utilize formulas for accurate calculations of income, expenses, and percentages. Here are the essential formulas to use:

A. Utilizing the SUM function to calculate total income

The SUM function is a powerful tool in Excel that allows you to quickly calculate the total income from various sources. To use the SUM function, simply select the cells containing the income values and enter the formula "=SUM(cell range)" in the desired cell. This will provide you with the total sum of all the income sources.

B. Subtracting total expenses from total income to get the net income

After calculating the total income, it's important to subtract the total expenses from the total income to obtain the net income. This can be achieved by using the simple formula "=(Total Income - Total Expenses)" in a designated cell. This will give you a clear picture of how much money you have left after covering all your expenses.

C. Using formulas to calculate percentages for each expense category

To gain insights into your spending habits, you can use formulas to calculate the percentage of each expense category in relation to the total expenses. This can be done by entering the formula "=(Expense Amount / Total Expenses) * 100" in a separate column next to each expense category. This will show you the percentage of your total expenses that each category represents, helping you identify areas where you may be overspending.

Creating visual representations

Visual representations can be incredibly useful when it comes to understanding and analyzing your monthly budget. Excel provides several tools for creating visual representations of your data, making it easier to identify trends and patterns in your finances.

A. Inserting a pie chart to visualize the percentage breakdown of expenses

  • First, select the data that you want to include in your pie chart. This will typically be the categories of expenses in your budget and their corresponding amounts.
  • Next, navigate to the "Insert" tab in Excel and click on "Pie Chart." Choose the style of pie chart that best suits your data.
  • Once the pie chart is inserted, you can further customize it by adding data labels, changing the colors, and adjusting the size and position.

B. Adding a bar graph to compare income versus expenses

  • Select the data for your income and expenses, including the amounts for each category.
  • Go to the "Insert" tab and click on "Bar Chart." Choose the type of bar chart that allows for easy comparison of income and expenses, such as a clustered bar chart or a stacked bar chart.
  • After inserting the bar chart, you can modify the axes, add data labels, and customize the appearance to make it more visually appealing.

C. Formatting the visuals to be easily understandable and visually appealing

  • Use clear and descriptive titles for your visual representations to ensure that the information is easy to understand at a glance.
  • Choose color schemes that are visually appealing and easy to distinguish, making it easier for the viewer to interpret the data.
  • Add data labels or legends to provide context and make it clear which data points correspond to which categories.

Reviewing and adjusting the budget

Creating a monthly budget in Excel is a great way to gain control over your finances and work towards your financial goals. After setting up your budget, it's important to regularly review and adjust it to ensure it aligns with your financial goals and current circumstances.

A. Reviewing the budget to ensure it aligns with financial goals

Take the time to review your budget and ensure that it aligns with your financial goals. This may include saving for a big purchase, paying off debt, or building an emergency fund. By reviewing your budget, you can ensure that your spending habits are in line with your long-term financial objectives.

B. Making adjustments as necessary to balance income and expenses

If you find that your expenses are exceeding your income, it's important to make adjustments to your budget. Look for areas where you can cut back on spending or find ways to increase your income. By making these adjustments, you can ensure that your budget remains balanced and manageable.

C. Saving a copy of the budget for future reference and tracking progress

Once you have reviewed and adjusted your budget, be sure to save a copy for future reference. This will allow you to track your progress over time and make any necessary changes in the future. Keeping a record of your monthly budgets can also provide valuable insights into your spending habits and help you make more informed financial decisions.


A. Creating a monthly budget is essential for managing your finances and achieving your financial goals. It helps you track your expenses, control your spending, and save for the future.

B. In this Excel tutorial, we covered the step-by-step process of creating a monthly budget using Excel, including setting up the spreadsheet, listing income and expenses, and creating formulas to track totals and analyze your budget.

C. I encourage you to regularly review and update your budget to ensure continued financial success. By monitoring your spending and making adjustments as needed, you can stay on track and achieve your financial goals.

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