Budgeting Basics

Case Study | Building a Budget Using Mint
Welcome to Mint!
Linking Bank Accounts and Credit Cards
Type in your bank or credit card company and follow the instructions on the screen. Repeat this for each account.
Once you have finished linking your accounts, visit the accounts home screen to see a brief summary of each account. 
Linking Loans, Investments and Property
Next add any loans, investments or property. From the account home screen, click Link Loan or Mortgage, Link Investment or Add a House or Car and follow the instructions to automatically track each account. 
Once you have finished linking all accounts, you will see a net worth at the bottom of the accounts home screen.
Simply put, net worth is defined by the equation:
What You Have – What You Owe = Net Worth
If you chose to include student loans, this number might look pretty bleak. That is because we are not able to add the value of our DVM degree to the asset or  “What You Have” side of the equation. We are only recording the liability or “What You Owe” portion. Luckily, most banks understand that in order for a veterinarian to practice medicine, they had to pay for an expensive degree. As long as student debt is well managed, it usually doesn’t get in the way of home or practice ownership. 
Selecting and Creating Budget Categories
Now its time to start building your budget. Select CREATE A BUDGET
Choose a category such as Auto Payment
If you do not see the category or subcategory you would like, select add a category and follow the instructions to personalize your budget. 
Returning to the category management screen, select the frequency this expense will occur (every month, every few months, once per year). If this is a category where you would like the balance to roll-over select start each month with the previous month’s leftover amount. Then enter the amount you expect to pay monthly, every few months or once per year. 
Repeat these steps for all expense items and income sources in your budget. 
Monitoring Your New Budget
Each transaction will need to be sorted so that it matches the categories in your budget. This is a bit tedious at first. It doesn’t stay that way for long. Each time you categorize a transaction, Mint gets “smarter”. This means the next time Mint sees a vendor (store) you categorized, it will automatically categorize the transaction to match the previous ones. 


  1. Thank you for sharing these budgeting resources Ian. I’ve been using Mint for about a month now, and it has really helped me realize how much money I spend and places where I can easily save.

Explore More