What is Flexible Budget Example Advanatges of flexible budget

Flexible Budget Definition

If actual volume is higher than planned, then costs will be higher, which is generally considered a negative result, even though you are selling more! If actual volume is lower than planned, then costs will be lower, which looks like a good thing, but may not be if your sales are down. A fixed budget is estimated on the past data and management’s anticipation regarding future events.

  • If such predictive planning is not possible, there will be a disparity between the static budget and actual results.
  • Nothing ever stays the same, and management has the responsibility to respond to unanticipated adverse conditions and to take advantage of unexpected opportunities.
  • Unless you’re on a very tight budget, you should be able to buy baseball tickets and go out to eat.
  • Flexibility budget – it is established for fixed cost and variable rate is determined per activity measure for variable cost.

Typically, this budget includes costs that are related to activity in addition to or rather than revenue. For example, a business’s insurance policy costs may vary based on how many employees the company has and may increase if the company hires new employees.

Identify which costs are variable and which costs are fixed

A long-term budget can be defined as a budget which is prepared for periods longer than a year. These budgets help in business forecasting and forward planning. Capital Expenditure Budget and Research and Development Budget are examples of long-term budgets. A variable cost is an expense that changes in proportion to production or sales volume. Unfavorable variance is an accounting term that describes instances where actual costs are greater than the standard or expected costs. All budgets get rolled up into the master budget, which also includes budgeted financial statements, forecasts of cash inflows and outflows, and an overall financing plan. At a corporation, the top management reviews the budget and submits it for approval to the board of directors.

Flexible budget enable an organization to predict its performance and income levels at a given range of sales levels and activity levels. It can be seen the impact of changes in sales and production levels on revenue, expenses and ultimately income. In flexible budgeting, a budget has scenarios for different potential volume levels. During the year, a company compares its actual results to the budget scenario that’s most appropriate based on the actual volume of activity. With flexible budgets, managers are constantly updating their projections and cost controls with current information. The most significant advantage of flexible budgets over static ones is the ability to adapt to changes in the real world.

Revenue Comparison

When unexpected expenses crop up, it’s easy to respond by pulling back from everything unnecessary in your life. By moving your money around you can see exactly how the numbers will work out, and can make sure to keep quality of life priorities from disappearing entirely. Flexible budgeting allows you to adjust your savings and spending based on how you actually live your life, not based on a hypothetical sketch of how you should live it. The rest of this article will focus on the personal finance of flexible budgeting because… well, that’s a lot more relevant to the rest of us. Suppose the budget was set up with the expectation that sales would be $200,000 per month and labor cost was budgeted at $50,000 per month, or 25 percent of sales.

  • This helps in a transparent and accurate calculation of variances.
  • Divide the budget you plan on spending on variable costs by your estimated production.
  • Conversely, if revenue didn’t at least meet the targets set in the static budget, or if actual costs exceeded the pre-established limits, the result would lead to lower profits.
  • Where the firms face difficulty in demand forecasting for new business and products.
  • Do executives have the stomach to say no, even when there is funding to undertake an unbudgeted project?
  • If so, one can integrate these other activity measures into the flexible budget model.

This allows for a more symbiotic relationship between the two. It helps in assessing the performance of the management and key production personnel. If the factory has to use more machine hours one month, its budget should logically increase. Conversely, if it uses them for fewer hours, its budget should reflect that decline. If the financial needs of a factory, for example, change regularly, a flexible budget makes more sense.

How to Prepare a Master Budget for a Business

The importance of flexible budgeting highly depends on how accurate expenses are categorized into variable, semi-fixed and fixed expenses. Flexible budgeting is important in creating cost estimates for various activity levels. The measurement of these activity levels is based on activity outputs, inputs and levels.

In this article, we will explore what a flexible budget is, the advantages and disadvantages of flexible budgeting and how you can create this type of budget for your business. A flexible budget is also called a variable budget because it shows how revenues and costs vary with volume throughout the budget range. Production budget – an estimate of the number of units that must be manufactured to meet the sales goals. The production budget also estimates the various costs involved with manufacturing those units, including labour and material. A personal budget or home budget is a finance plan that allocates future personal income towards expenses, savings and debt repayment. Past spending and personal debt are considered when creating a personal budget.

Flexible budget definition

It helps in setting the expected costs, revenues, and profitability of the business. Further, since the flexible budget is not rigid, it can be adjusted according to the actual activity level at the end of the accounting period and used for variance analysis.

What is flexible budget formula?

Flexible budget= Fixed cost + (actual unit of activity x variable cost per unit of activity).

You will want to leave yourself some catch-up time if some of your bills are already late. Although eliminating expenses entirely is the fastest way to a solid budget, substitution tends to have more lasting effects. People often cut too deep and end up making a budget that they can’t keep because it feels like they are giving up everything. Substitution, in contrast, keeps the basics while cutting down the costs. Without knowing your cash flow, you could be putting yourself into a bad financial situation and not even know it.


These budgets are different in different levels of activities, which facilitate the ascertainments of fixation of cost, selling prices, and tendering of Quotations. The factors of production are prone to certain limitations and are not in human control. Making a prediction based on these resources can be difficult. Some costs are not fully variable and consist of a fixed portion as well. It requires careful analysis of costs and incorrect classification of costs can provide inaccurate results. A flexible budget gives you wiggle room for the unexpected and unknown. This budget model can justify large variances which may have occurred because of increased demand or other external factors.

Flexible Budget Definition

Housing should occupy its own category; for renters, it will likely have little more than “Rent.” Then, under that, account for your groceries, coffee, metro tickets and all the other little things you buy on a day-to-day basis. Use “Entertainment” for your non-essentials like a bar tab, going to the movies, concert Flexible Budget Definition tickets and the like. “Shopping” will account for your one-off purchases, everything from electronics to books or a new jacket. The key difference is that Daily Expenses covers the things you buy routinely while Shopping covers the things you buy once. Prepare alternate budgets for producing 6000 and 7000 units.

Variance Analyses: Tale of Two Coffee Shops

Conversely, if revenue didn’t at least meet the targets set in the static budget, or if actual costs exceeded the pre-established limits, the result would lead to lower profits. A static budget helps to monitor expenses, sales, and revenue, which helps organizations achieve optimal financial performance.

What is the purpose of flexing a budget?

Accounting professionals should be able to 'flex' budgets. This process means changing a budget to allow for different sales levels and allows more realistic variance analysis at the end of the financial period in question.

There are several methods and tools available for creating, using, and adjusting a personal budget. For example, jobs are an income source, while bills and rent payments are expenses. A third category may be assets representing a potential reserve for funds in case of budget shortfalls. Whether switching to a flexible budgeting process from a static model or starting from scratch, there are keys to success.

Fixed and Flexible Budget

A flexible budget is a budget or financial plan of estimated cost and revenue for different output levels. The variation happens due to the change in the volume https://personal-accounting.org/ or level of activity. Let’s assume a company determines that its cost of electricity and supplies will vary by approximately $10 for each machine hour used.

Flexible Budget Definition

This does not always happen but is why flexible budgets are important for giving management an indication of what questions need to be asked. Unlike a static budget, a flexible budget changes or fluctuates with changes in sales and production volumes. The static budget is intended to be fixed and unchanging for the duration of the period, regardless of fluctuations that may affect outcomes. When using a static budget, some managers use it as a target for expenses, costs, and revenue while others use a static budget to forecast the company’s numbers. Although flexed budgets tend to maintain fixed costs at the same level whatever the level of output/sales, very often fixed costs are actually fixed only over a relevant output range. The method of determining the fixed and variable elements of costs is often arbitrary and hence the flexed cost bear little relation to the correct budgeted cost for the flexed level of activity.

Potential to maximize revenue

The cost of preparing the various packages may be very high in large firms involving vast number of decision packages. The paper work will increase periodically due to large number of decision packages. The state and stability of an individual’s personal finances is called financial health.

  • The measurement of these activity levels is based on activity outputs, inputs and levels.
  • It also knows that other costs are fixed costs of approximately $40,000 per month.
  • The analysis may include actual and budgeted costs and comparisons between different costs.
  • To forecast the amount of expenditure under the various classification heads to meet the physical plan.
  • In contrast, a flexible budget might base its marketing expenses on a percentage of overall sales for the period.

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