Budget Builder Spreadsheet

Build next year’s budget from the ground up with the Budget Builder template.

Budget Builder for Google Spreadsheets

I’m sharing my process (and my budget-builder personal worksheet). Maybe the sheet is helpful. Maybe you build on top of what I’ve shared. Maybe the concept helps you form your own (better) process.  Here is what I do…

I start by looking at my actuals from the prior year. If there are any surprises, I use a custom query tool to understand the top income or expense transactions within a category (e.g. an expensive meal, a forgotten home repair, etc). From there, I strip out one-time expenses (a trip, an expensive purchase, a home improvement, etc) in the timeframe where they occurred.

At this point, I have a baseline of my monthly actuals without the surprise items that I don’t expect to recur in the coming year. I like to look at the annualized average at this point and level it with a rounded “baseline override”. The Groceries category is an instructive example here. It’s not a seasonal expense so I don’t need to try to track the ups and downs of the prior year. If I spent $6,000 the prior year, I’m just going to override the month-to-month lumpiness (of the actuals) with $500 per month.

Finally, I add/budget in my new one-time expenses like planned travel, home upgrades, a new computer, etc.


How to install this template

Start your free Tiller trial, set up your Foundation Template, then install this template with the free Tiller Community Solutions add-on for Google Sheets.

Tiller Community Solutions FAQ

Is this template free?

This is a free template created by a member of the Tiller Community. While it's free for anyone to use, it's designed for Google Sheets automated by Tiller. Additionally, it's recommended for use within the Foundation Template.

What is Tiller?

Tiller is the only automated personal finance service for Google Sheets and Excel. Tiller keeps all your daily spending, income, and account balances updated in your spreadsheets, so you can easily see where you stand at a glance and gain powerful insights about your money. Learn more →

Does this template have any dependencies or special requirements?

This template for Google Sheets works best when installed in Tiller's Foundation Template.

Have questions about this template?

Visit the Tiller Community with any questions about this template.