Save Money On A Budget and Free Printable

With the new year and new goals, comes a new budget plan! I know a lot of us are making our lists of all the goals we want to accomplish this year. And if you’re like me (I feel for ya!) ;) I’m ready to get the ball rolling on some new projects and knock a few things off the long list of to-dos. Some of your goals may involve beautifying your home (so that we can all be on the cover of Southern Living, right? it could happen.), living a healthier lifestyle, paying off some debt, or spending more time with our families – crazy as that may be! :)

The reality of all this is that these goals take time and money. Today, I’m going to offer up some tips for creating a budget and ways to reduce some expenses to get that much closer to achieving your goals! Oh and there’s a free printable at the end to help get you started too!free printable budget planner worksheet
Here’s something ya’ll probably didn’t know about me. I lead a second life. Don’t worry, I’m not going to tell you I live some dark and mysterious alter ego like Superwoman or something. That would be a lot more exciting, wouldn’t it? Nope, not quite. You see, you all know me as this blogger chick, the girl that is always crafting up something or planning out her next DIY project. But what you don’t know is that by day, I work full time as a manager at a credit union! So planning a budget is a must in our home!
You may already have a budget that works for you and that’s fantastically awesome! Kudos to you and share some success stories here for us, please! :) I’m going to share some tips that we use to help save money while on a budget and making over a home! Because my DIY can be an expensive habit. ;)
  1. Reduce grocery expenses by using coupons and meal-planning. I don’t mean like create this 40 page binder of coupons. I just don’t have time for that. But almost every major store has a digital app and offers downloadable coupons. Meal-planning can help cut down on eating out and you will only buy what you need.
  2. Take on more home maintenance and repair yourself. That’s right! Get out your hammer and tool belt and go to work! There are plenty of DIY bloggers and sites out there that can tell you how to do just about anything. Know your limits, but don’t be afraid to try something new.
  3. Look for furniture and home decor at thrift stores, craigslist, consignment stores, and even curb sides! What a great way to makeover an item and put some of your own personality into your home.
  4. Choose easy-care household fabrics and appliances. I have a confession here. I gave up my front load washer for a top load. WHAAA??? Yep, that front load washer got to be too much maintenance if you can believe it. It’s all personal preference and if you like the front loader, I totally respect that. Just be sure to look at all your options. Also, I don’t buy anything that says “Dry Clean Only.”
  5. Support your local library. I love taking our daughter to story time at the library, but did you know you can get movies there too?
  6. I have a Don’t Pay Retail Philosophy. It may kill me to see something that I totally love and then have to wait it out for a sale or coupon. I will say that there are a few places this may not work. HomeGoods is absolutely one of those. ;)
Whatever your spending plan may be, be realistic about your goals. Discuss values with your family. Remember it takes baby steps to reach your bigger goals, so don’t beat yourself up. Reward yourself a little when you do well and always, ALWAYS, put miscellaneous in the budget. Kids get sick, cars need work, appliances need replacing. It will happen.
I’ve included for you a free budget planning worksheet. We use this each month to help keep us on track. We also use to help track our goals and spending habits. Check it out! It’s free too!
So, what tips do you have for saving money on a budget?
What do you find the hardest part to creating a spending plan or should I say saving plan? ‘Cause I have no trouble spending. :)
To download the template, just click here or on the image and enjoy! To print the planner, just click on the link to the image, then right click the image and save it to your computer. You can then print it from there. If you prefer an excel version, I’m happy to share, just send me an email to creativelysouthern(at)gmail(dot)com and I’ll send it right to you. :)  If it helped you, please share it with a friend!
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Its Overflowing – Simply Inspired Home Living



  • Michelle Johnnie

    I totally agree with what you have written and I appreciate the free printable. I am featuring this at

  • Gaby

    Is possible to download in Excel to use it in the computer?

  • anne

    Thanks for the tips. We too have a front load washer and the next time we get one it will be top load. Do you like your new top load? Does it have an agitator or not?

  • Ellora Drinnen

    Anne, we love our new top load. It does have an agitator, but it’s so quiet. I also found that it doesn’t shake the whole house like the front load did. Our laundry room is upstairs next to the nursery (!!!) so we needed it to be as quiet as possible and still in our budget. But how awkward was it when the delivery guys showed up with a top load washer to haul away a front load HE version!? :) I questioned that decision for a while, but 3 months later – totally happy with it!

  • Sarah Carper

    I’m your newest fan! I’m loving this budget page and am so excited to start using it! Setting a budget (and sticking to it!) is one of my new years resolutions! Thanks for this!

  • Claudine from

    Thanks for the tips, Ellora!!!
    Here we could definitely cut down on food!
    We love to cook and we spend a lot on everything!
    I never use coupons.. I will check some coupons online.
    We are doing much better regarding restaurants, though. We plan our meals and eat at home most of the time.

  • Anonymous

    I have been looking for a free printable like this all over blog land. Is there ANY WAY AT ALL you could post it or email it to me in excel so I can use excel to edit?

  • Ellora Drinnen

    Thanks so much for all your comments! I love reading them all. Anonymous, I’ll be glad to send you an excel version. It doesn’t allow editing of the entire worksheet since it’s created by your’s truly ;) but you can certainly use it to put your figures in and save to your computer! Just need your email address please. ;) Be sure to spell it out if you leave it in the comments. For example: creativelysouthern(at)gmail(dot)com Cheers!!!

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  • Tina

    Thanks for the budget printable! I do have a problem, however. It printed out very blurry. It is also blurry on my computer screen. (yes, I’m wearing my glasses, LOL) I wonder if anyone else had this problem?

    • Ellora @ Creatively Southern

      Hi Tina! Thank you for your comment and letting me know that the budget is coming out blurry. I will email you a good copy and will try to get this updated on the post asap for everyone else!! :)

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