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Free Budget Calculator

Input your monthly after-tax income to determine your spending in three categories.
February 24, 2017
Managing Money, Personal Finance
At cheatgame.info, we adhere to strict standards of editorial integrity to help you make decisions with confidence. Some of the products we feature are from our partners. Here’s how we make money.
We adhere to strict standards of editorial integrity. Some of the products we feature are from our partners. Here’s how we make money.

It can be a challenge to stick to a budget. cheatgame.info wants to set you up for success by helping you create a realistic budget that accounts for all of your expenses.

We advocate the 50/30/20 method as the best way to spend your money responsibly.

Use our calculator to estimate how you should divide your monthly income into needs, wants and savings.

» MORE: cheatgame.info shows you where your money goes

What is the 50/30/20 budget?

Start with your take-home income, devote 50% of that figure to necessities, 30% to wants and 20% to savings. Here’s how it breaks down:

  • Monthly after-tax income. This figure is your income after taxes have been deducted and the cost of payroll deductions for health insurance, 401(k) contributions or other automatic savings have been added back in.
  • 50% of your income: necessities. Necessities are the expenses you can’t avoid. This portion of your budget should cover costs like housing, food, transportation and insurance.
  • 30% of your income: wants. Wants are the extras that you spend money on for fun or enjoyment. They include entertainment, travel, extracurricular activities and memberships.

Start with your take-home income, devote 50% of that figure to necessities, 30% to wants and 20% to savings.

  • 20% of your income: savings and debt. Savings is the amount you sock away to prepare for the future. Devote this chunk of your income to paying down existing debt and creating a comfortable level of funds to avoid taking on future debt.

For more budgeting advice, review our tips for how to build a budget.

Not sure how to start budgeting? Become a cheatgame.info member for free. We’ll track your spending in one place and identify areas where you can save.