Accounting Paycheck Series

Say Goodbye to Living Paycheck to Paycheck: Forward Budgeting and the Cash System

Say Goodbye to Living Paycheck to Paycheck: Forward Budgeting and the Cash System February 25, 20177 Comments


This post is part of a series.  To start the series from the beginning, click here.  To browse through the series, click here.

Forward budgeting, also known as the ‘forward roll’ is also a three-step process.  Each month, you project your expenses and savings.  At the end of the month, any funds that weren’t used will be transferred into your savings account.  This process repeats each month.


The envelope system can be used in a similar method to reverse budgeting.  The only difference is that you don’t put a set amount of money into the Savings envelope at the beginning of the month.

Instead, allocate the money into the spending envelopes.  At the end of the month, move any money that is left in the envelopes to the Savings envelope.



Using a printable is a fun way of tracking your finances.  There are many budgeting printables online that would be a great solution for your spending tracking and savings rollover.

Computer Spreadsheet

A computer spreadsheet is very helpful when using the forward roll method.  The main point of the forward roll is to maximize saving potential.  A computer spreadsheet can help you to project your savings over time.  This is very useful when saving up for a large purchase like a house or a car.  You can find multiple examples of tracking the forward roll method with a spreadsheet here.


Apps and programs are a great way of tracking spending but can become very complicated when tracking cash.  I recommend using either a paper tool or a spreadsheet to track cash finances.

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  1. I love the envelope system it is perfect if you have to keep to a strict budget and I would try and make it a competition with myself to try and not use all the money in the envelopes.

  2. Love that you mentioned the envelope system. That was my favorite way to pay bills when I worked in restaurants and got paid in tips. It was the easiest way to keep up with the cash. Great information!

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