When it comes to financial management one of the best things anyone can do is set up a budget for themselves, and follow it. You will find that without a plan in mind on how to manage your spending, you will only be spending without knowing exactly where it is going.

Budgets can help you see the bigger picture with your spending, and allows you to see where all of your money is going. When you make your initial budget, you will find that the amount you have allocated to each category will likely need to be adjusted drastically after your first month.

The fact is, a budget will allow you to spend without feeling the stress of knowing where your money is going. Ultimately, having a budget will allow you to become less stressful when dealing with your finances.

How can do I go about creating my own budget?

Creating your budget is not as hard as one might think. What it really comes down to it is that you need to go through your monthly spending and categorize it accordingly.

Most people will use their credit or debit card for the majority of their purchases, which is great because you can easily track your spending and determine how to categorize your budget.

The categories that should be in your budget include food expenses, debt, entertainment, etc.

At BankNerd we have been able to compile a comprehensive list of best budget templates, which we give out to consumers for free. Many personal finance bloggers helped provide their own unique budget templates.

As you can see below, the budget template from Krystal Yee, blogger at Give Me Back My Five Bucks outlines expenses, savings, debt and income in their own tables, allowing the user to easily track all aspects of their finances.

What makes this budget template great is the fact that there is another section in the document that allows you to breakdown your expenses, which makes it easy for you to determine exactly where you money has been going.

Creating your own budget is always one of the best things to do, however the key to budgets is actually recording all of your expenses. The fact is, even when you take the time to create your budget, chances are that there will be certain times where you either forget to write down a purchase, or completely disregard your budget all together.

To help you manage your finances better, banks have stepped up to help you.

How are banks helping in financial management?

Out of the Big Six, three banks have stepped up and are offering financial management tools that can assist clients in managing their finances better.

The three banks who have stepped up are none other than the Bank of Montreal (BMO), the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), and the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC).

Out of these three banks, CIBC was the first to offer a solution for those looking to manage their finances without having to rely on a secondary budget. CIBC launched CIBC CreditSmart, which is a financial management tool aimed to help people who want to budget their spending through their credit card. All of your expenses can be easily categorized, and once you have done then your transactions will automatically be directed to the respected category.

RBC was the next bank to offer a solution clients were looking for, and that solution is called myFinanceTracker. myFinanceTracker is a tool that not only tracks your spending through your debit or credit purchases, but also automatically categorizes them for you. Within each category, you are allowed to make sub-categories, allowing yourself to properly set and see where your money is going.

BMO ha sonly recently launched their financial management tool, which is called BMO MoneyLogic. BMO MoneyLogic allows the user to manage their transactions, set goals and track their progress, set budgets and receive notifications when limits have been met, and best of all collect the client’s spending and saving data to produce easy to read charts and graphs.

What makes all of these financial management tools great is the fact that these banks have created them and are giving them to you at no cost. They allow you to easily track your expenses, and take control of your spending.

Creating a budget is essential for anyone looking to take control of their finances; it may take a little work at first, but in the end it will be worth it.

Guest post by Sensei from BankNerd.ca, Canada’s Banking Information Source. You can Follow BankNerd on Twitter, Facebook or by Email Newsletter.