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Day 3 Know your outgoings

Day 3: What goes in a budget?

Knowing your day-to-day outgoings helps you to understand your spending. Just making a list of where your money goes can make the situation feel easier to manage.

By putting together a budget you’ll also be able to look at areas of your spending where you can make changes. Careful budgeting can also bring you long-term benefits and keeping track of where your money's going is an important step to take.

Creating a budget doesn't have to be a chore. Rory has helped thousands of people to list their outgoings. In this video guide he'll take you through the basics of understanding your spending.

Create a budget

Free spending planner

It can be hard to know where your money is going. Download our free template to help you plan a list of your outgoings.

Download spending planner (pdf)

Keep track of your spending

To create a list of your spending there are a couple of things you'll need, and one thing that's optional:

  • Household bills, receipts and bank statementsThis will help you list your outgoings including utilities and living costs
  • Pen and paper or spreadsheetYou can also use our spending planner above as a guide
  • A cup of tea or coffeeThis isn't essential but it could help you focus

Easy ways to cut back on your spending

Once you know how much you spend on bills and living costs you should look at simple ways to reduce your outgoings. You could buy supermarket own brands, switch energy providers or take your own lunch to work each day. You can find out lots more ways to save money on our MoneyAware blog.

Coming up tomorrow

Day 4 of the programme is all about understanding your income. If you can't wait until tomorrow then you can skip ahead to Day 4 now.

If you do one thing today...

Use our free spending planner to list your outgoings including your utilities, rent/mortgage and household spending.

Yesterday: Know your priorities

Today: Know your outgoings

Tommorow: Skip ahead to tomorrow

Need help now?

If you need debt help now then go straight to our Debt Remedy tool for debt advice in 20 minutes.

Get debt help now

Take one mindful minute...


As part of your 7 Days, 7 Ways journey, you can also learn more about mindfulness and the benefits it may have in your daily life. Visit Mental Health Foundation’s bemindful.co.uk for more information.

Day 3: Make it a habit and be patient.

Persevere with the breathing techniques we’ve discussed, and make time for yourself whenever you can. It can just take a minute a day to be mindful, but it can be easy to lose the motivation if you’re not in the habit of it. Set a time in your diary to walk away from your desk or into another space.

As with most things, start simple and slowly build momentum. It can take time for a new habit to become part of your automatic routine. Slowly increase the time spent on mindfulness at your own pace. There’s no rush!

Helping you become debt free...

“I wish to thank your staff for all the great help they gave me when I was in so much debt.
They were a pillar of support to me.” (Leslie, Essex)

Foundation for Credit Counselling Wade House, Merrion Centre, Leeds, LS2 8NG trading as StepChange Debt Charity and StepChange Debt Charity Scotland. A registered charity no.1016630 and SC046263. It is a limited company registered in England and Wales (company no:2757055). Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

*This is the average rating of our service based on the StepChange reviews on Feefo by DMP and DRO clients three months into their solution.

© StepChange Debt Charity 2018