If you’re conscious of your income and expenditure, you can plan better for your long-term financial goals.

The main points in a nutshell

  • A comparison of your income and expenses shows you how much of your budget you have at your disposal.
  • Online budget calculators or E-Banking help you to plan and stick to your budget.
  • Good budget planning will help you reach your long-term personal financial goals – whether you’re planning to raise a family, take a trip around the world, or save for your dream property.

Traveling, theater visits and hobbies, plus the desire to buy property at the same time: in a household, the expenses can soon add up. Good budget planning can help you keep your finances under control and avoid surprises – but only if you do it right. We show you how to draw up your budget and how it will help you to achieve your common financial goals in the long term.

How to keep control over your budget and finances

A household is like a business. You and your family manage the finances – and at the end of the year, all being well, your income is greater than or at least equal to your expenses. With this money you, or the whole family, can fulfill a long-held wish, or save up for something specific in the long term. The basis for this is knowing what you spend your money on. By drawing up a household budget, you can see at a glance how much money you and your family will have left at the end of the month. A budget also helps you identify potential savings.

How do you draw up a budget?

To draw up a budget, you need to know your precise financial situation. It’s therefore important to be honest and provide accurate information. This is the only way to ensure that the budget will be of benefit to you and your family. Even if you plan to spend less money on your car, vacations, clothing or leisure in the future – the current amounts should be entered in your budget. Our tip: if your monthly expenditure on an item fluctuates a great deal, you can take the average of the last six months as a basis, for example.

1. The first step is to calculate your total income

Income is generally composed of the following:

  • Salary
  • Bonuses (if any)
  • Financial income from assets
  • Pension entitlements such as AHV and IV
  • Investments and Participations
  • Other income

2. The second step is to calculate your expenses

Expenses can be categorized as follows:

  • Accommodation: rent or mortgage payments, incidental expenses, maintenance costs
  • Insurance policies: health insurance, car insurance, household insurance and all other insurance policies
  • Taxes
  • Household expenses
  • Transport
  • Leisure

Extra tip: you can categorize all your payments in UBS E-Banking. This will allow you to obtain an overview more quickly when listing your expenses.

3. Finally, compare your income with your expenses

There are several tools and templates that can help you with this. You can also easily enter your income and expenses in an Excel to clarify your financial situation. Based on the information entered, you can create your personal budget so that you can keep a healthy balance between income and expenditure and regularly put money aside.

How best to allocate your financial resources

As soon as you have obtained an overview of your income and expenditure, you can make a start on the actual budget planning. To find out what proportion of income you should be spending on the various cost categories, it’s worth taking a look at the usual benchmarks, such as the Swiss budget advisory association. For example, individuals with a net income of CHF 7,000 should spend no more than half of it on fixed costs such as housing, taxes, insurance, telephony and public transport subscriptions. For a family with two children, the rule of thumb is to spend no more than 30 percent of income on accommodation, 20 percent on household expenses and 12 percent on leisure.

Don’t forget: family planning

When budgeting, you should also take into account your personal planning – for example, family planning – regardless of whether you are expecting your first child soon or are already a mother. This is because a child increases consumer spending in the family budget by an average of CHF 1,525 per month (Office for Youth and Vocational Guidance. Last updated: 2022.)) Children aged 13 years and older cost the most – at this age, it’s not only hobbies that have to be financed, but education too. Overall, parents should reckon with additional expenditure of around CHF 18,000 a year for their household expenses alone. By the time a child turns 18, this will have added up to the tidy sum of CHF 330,000. This does not include indirect costs such as external childcare, lower income in case of self-care or the value of unpaid family work. Each extra child causes additional costs – but the cost per child decreases.

You mustn’t forget that having a child usually results in a decline in income at the same time – it’s still usually the woman who stops working or reduces their working hours. Child allowances of at least CHF 200 per month or CHF 250 during education aren’t enough to make up for this shortfall.

Secure your long-term financial planning: use the household budget as a basis

Budget planning is important for keeping your finances under control. And in the long term it also pays off for financial planning. For you, it’s not just a matter of keeping tabs on your current expenses, but also of thinking in the medium and long term and structuring assets according to your financial needs. You should therefore set your financial goals early on and consider what financial resources you need and when. For the children’s education? Your own retirement planning? Or maybe for real estate? This will facilitate financial planning that is tailored to your assets, needs and financial goals. Perhaps it won’t be possible to put money aside for all your desires right from the start. So you should set priorities and start with what is most important to you.

E-Banking and other resources will help youco. – to put your plans into practice

Lastly, it’s important to consistently stick to your budget – this is the only way to achieve your goals without effort. E-Banking provides vital support by allowing you to keep constant control of your spending and your account balance. We also recommend setting up direct debits and standing orders for regular expenses. This will ensure you don’t forget to make a payment and help you to avoid unnecessary fees.

We would be pleased to assist you along the way.

Women’s Wealth Academy

Women who participate actively in financial decisions increase their chances of financial security and worry less about their future.

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