How To

10 Budget Calculators for All of Life’s Situations

photo: ansik

In itself, Mint.com is a thorough budget calculator, looking at all of your actual expenses and income and giving you comparisons to allocated budget amounts. But sometimes you just want to run a few hypotheticals based on a potential income or expense increases or decreases as the result of a future event. Or maybe you just want to drill into a very specific situation. That’s where the 10 quick and easy budgeting calculators we’ve outlined below can come in handy.

General Budgeting Calculators

Kiplinger: Kiplinger has a very comprehensive worksheet that lets you project your expenses in a wide range of spending categories (from fixed costs such as housing and car payments to variables like pocket money and your electric bill) and compares them to how much you actually spent.

CNBC: The ‘On the Money’ team has created a helpful budgeting calculator that takes the guesswork out of how you should allocate your take-home income, including savings and spending in various categories. Simply put in your monthly take home pay, and it calculates the rest.

20SomethingFinance: Shameless self-promotion (but for good reason). Over 2 years ago, I created a budgeting spreadsheet that I still use to this day. It includes built-in formulas to calculate total income and expenses and the ability to budget for every month of the year ahead. If you want to save the work you’ve completed, having your own spreadsheet is the way to go.

photo: clevercupcakes

Weddings Budget Calculators

Your Wedding Company: Getting married in the near future? If you aren’t setting aside and keeping tabs on a budget for your big day, you are heading towards a world of debt pain and a rocky financial start to your marriage. This calculator has a pre-set field for just about every wedding expense that you could potentially incur. It includes the ability to see ‘suggested’ budgeting amounts.

The Ritz Carlton: Working backwards, and perhaps more effectively, the RitzCarlton has created a wedding budget calculator that allows you to put in your total budget and the number of guests you plan on inviting, and then giving you a list of how much you should allocate towards each wedding expense.

photo: sleepyneko

Student Budgeting Calculator: Finaid

Looking for a budgeting calculator that factors in all student related income and expenses? Look no further than Finaid’s student budget calculator. Tuitions, books, grants, loans, work study: all are factored in.

Startup Business Calculator: IdeaCafe

Starting a business can include costs that you have planned for– and a whole bunch of costs you probably had not considered. Whether you’re just toying around with the idea of a startup or feel ready to take the plunge, IdeaCafe’s startup business calculator will help you keep your budget on track.

photo: jessicafm

Cost of Raising Children Calculator: WalletPop

Not sure whether you can afford to have children at the moment or add another to your growing family? WalletPop aims to lend some insight with this helpful ‘cost of raising a child’ calculator. It includes pre-set amounts of average expenses in each category.

Budgeting Calculator for Being a Stay-at-Home Parent: WalletPop

WalletPop’s second budget calculator entry to make the list delivers with helping you answer the age-old new parent dilemma: “What is the financial impact of becoming a stay-at-home parent?” The fact that it factors in cost savings from working at home makes it even more helpful.

photo: rappensuncle

Retirement Budget Calculator: CNN Money

Although not a ‘budgeting’ tool in that it doesn’t calculate what future expenses will be, it is effective in determining how much income you will have in your golden years so that you can properly budget in savings in the present.

GE Miller discusses personal finance topics for young professionals at 20somethingfinance.com.