Your income and benefits provide you with the financial resources to pay for your living expenses. It’s important to get a clear picture of how much you have coming in every month, so you can better budget to pay your bills and possibly save toward your goals.
Remember, income isn't the same as benefits. While income (like from a job) can be used to pay for anything, some benefits can only be used for a particular purpose, like food or medical costs.
Also, income may not always come on a regular basis. Knowing what income is regular, irregular, seasonal and one-time-only can help you be prepared for when you have less coming in.
What to do
- Gather all of your pay stubs, benefits statements and records of electronic payments
- Categorize the net income amount you receive each week. Net income is what you actually bring home in your paycheck. It's your total pay (gross income) minus taxes, insurance and other deductions taken out
- Job 1
- Job 2
- Child support
- Disability benefits
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- Note any income that comes at predictable times and in the same amount to help show you what income you can count on each month
- Add up the amounts you receive each week and then add up the weekly totals to figure out your income for the month
Download this fillable PDF to help you get a total picture of your income and benefits.
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This material is provided for educational and information purposes only. It is not a replacement for the guidance or advice of an accountant, certified advisor or otherwise qualified professional.