Budget Survey Results

A couple weeks ago, I asked for my readers to take a budgeting survey. This was part of my effort to get a better understanding of whether people liked budgeting or not. I suspected that more of my personal finance friends actually don’t budget, but I needed some hard data. I always enjoy finding out new statistics, so I figured I would work to generate some new ones.

Are you Curious to Hear Whether Personal Finance Bloggers Like Budgeting?

If you have anxiously been waiting to see the results, I am glad to release it today. Overall, 30 people participated in the survey. Because I also wanted this post to be informational, I asked everyone who participated to offer 1 piece of advice for my readers that had to do with budgeting. There were a lot of great tips, but I forced myself to only choose 5. Here’s the top five (in no particular order).

[stextbox id=”info”]Budgeting is like dieting. It’s a lot easier to overeat or overspend than it is to restrict yourself. It is always hard to find a balance, but balance is the key to success.Newly Weds on a Budget[/stextbox]

[stextbox id=”info”]The most important goal of any budget (even if you don’t have one like me) is to generate positive cash flow each month. Once you are spending less than you earn all other things in your personal finances are possible.Six Figure Investor[/stextbox]

[stextbox id=”info”]Remember that life happens, and if you do blow your budget now and again, it is okay.  Consider that working your budget over the long term will increase your chances of success.  Glitches will happen, learn from them and let it go.  – Cents to Save[/stextbox]

[stextbox id=”info”]

Aim for the stars. If you fail, maybe you’ll land on the moon. Also, automate anything you can!

I build in such a large cushion it doesn’t hurt when we go over budget – but it helps to have targets. We do celebrate a month where we hit the target, but we go over as much as we hit our spending targets. If we hit them? We might lower a category even further.”Don’t Quit Your Day Job


[stextbox id=”info”]Your budget has to work for YOUR situation. You can’t always follow a formula to determine your needs and expenses, and you can’t always cut drastically in certain areas just because a personal finance guru says you should. If your budget is unrealistic for you, you’ll never follow it.So Over Debt[/stextbox]

Budgeting Statistics

Now that you have learned all about budgeting through the advice of the experts, how about some statistics, accompanied by some cool charts:

  • 6 People said that they do budget on a regular basis
  • 3 people who budget on a monthly basis say they do not enjoy budgeting. That tells me people not only budget for different reasons, but because they think it is important (regardless of whether they enjoy it). Good for you!
  • When asked how often you over-spend your budget, there was a varied response (see below for details):


There you have it. If you think personal finance bloggers are the most disciplined, finance-loving individuals out there, you have something else to learn.

Did anything surprised you by the results? If so, what was it?

16 Responses to Budget Survey Results

  1. PKamp3 says:

    Yeah – I expected more uniformity in the over-spend question. I expected ‘never’ and ‘rarely’, but it looks like we’ve got the whole spectrum covered…

    Thanks for including us!

  2. Kyle says:

    I actually expected “Most of the time” for overspending – glad to see there are people unlike me who actually manage to stick to a budget! It just means I need to keep ironing out my budget to fit my lifestyle. Interesting survey!

  3. I’ve never been a big budget guy. I make sure the savings account has more in it at the end of the month than at the beginning. If it’s heading the wrong direction, and there’s not a very good short term reason, I’ll take action. But in general I don’t worry about it. I try to make good spot decisions about what to buy, and leave it at that.

    I find I’m much more competent at, and can achieve better results by, maximizing the inflow side. So I focus on that.

  4. The overspend results are a bit surprising. I figured it would be at least 50-50 leaning towards responsible budgeting. Good to see that even pf bloggers are human and deal with budget issues from time to time.

  5. Thanks for running the survey. It’s always interesting to see how others do it.

  6. Thank you for taking a survey. It is very interesting to see how other blogger’s manage their finance.

  7. Interesting numbers. I don’t like budgeting either.
    I like to take the automated approach all the time. But you do have to figure out your budget the first time. Can’t get away from that.

  8. Not too surprised because I suspect a lot of PF bloggers have their act together (or at least I hope they do). Once you’ve cleaned up your mess, I could see relaxing a bit and skipping a budget. Probably goes on autopilot after a few years of doing it.

  9. Christa says:

    Very interesting! It would be interesting to see how different people budget as well, like if they put money into upteen different accounts of if they budget so everything comes out of one account.

  10. Kylie Ofiu says:

    That is really interesting. I too would have expected more uniformity and that more PF bloggers would have been into budgeting and things. I love budgeting and we stick to it pretty well. We rarely go over. That said in the past we were hopeless, but we have it together now.

  11. I am part of the 80%! Though I must admit that we go over our budget as well. When I was single it was set in stone. Now that I am married, it seems to be an outline:).

  12. Alex Morgan says:

    I’m pleased to know that other personal finance bloggers are as human as I am and make mistakes. Also like the comparison to dieting and how it is generally easier to cut back then find room for extra calories. Of course I just wrote a post on this, so I guess it is on my mind.

  13. It’s nice to see that I’m not the only PF blogger who has gone over budget before. I’ve actually grown to enjoy budgeting, but then again…I am kinda a dork. 😉

  14. Andrea says:

    A budget tells us what we can’t afford, but it doesn’t keep us from buying it.