How to draft a liquidity budget

The liquidity budget is an indispensable part of your financial plan. Your financial backers will ask you for it, and it helps you plan ahead. Find out how to make one.

A liquidity budget is also called a cash flow forecast. It helps you keep track of your company funds. In the budget, you calculate how much money is in your bank account after income and expenses. It will immediately show you whether you always have enough money to pay your bills. And also whether you need extra money in certain months. Or when it is smart to buy a new computer, for example.

Draw up your liquidity budget in 4 steps

  1. Opening balance

    Determine the opening balance as of the 1st of the month.

  2. Income and expenses

    List the income and expenses you expect in the following months.

  3. Surplus or shortage

    Determine whether there is a surplus or a shortage in a given month. Example: you employ staff. You have to pay their holiday allowance in May. In the liquidity budget, you set aside sufficient money for these expenses in May. You also ensure that you have sufficient money for the other expenses in that month.

  4. Additional financing

    Do you see a shortage in a certain month? Then take action in time and arrange additional financing as soon as possible. For example, you can request extra working capital (in Dutch).

Example of a liquidity budget

Month 1
 

Bank balance beginning of month
10,000

Customer payments received
  8,000

 
 

Payments to suppliers
  1,000

Rent
  1,000
Wages
  2,000
Private withdrawal 
  2,000

Payable VAT
  1,600

TOTAL income and expenses
     400


 

Bank balance end of month
10,400

Month 2
 

Bank balance beginning of month
10,400

Customer payments received
  7,000

 
 

Payments to suppliers
     800

Rent
  1,000
Wages
  2,000
Private withdrawal 
  2,000

Payable VAT
  1,400

TOTAL income and expenses
   - 200


 

Bank balance end of month
10,200

Tips

  • Take your customers' payment terms into account. On average, private individuals in the Netherlands pay after 30 days. Companies usually pay between 30 and 90 days.
  • Take holidays into account: if your company closes during the holiday period, you will not receive any new assignments during that period.
  • Some payments are at fixed times. For example, taxes, rent, telephone costs and wages. You cannot postpone these payments.
  • State VAT in a separate column. Take into account the VAT return you need to file and pay. Most businesses file a VAT return every 3 months over the previous quarter. In the following month, you pay the due amount of VAT to the Tax Administration. There is a chance that you pay VAT before you have received the money from your customer. For instance, if you have sent the invoice in February, filed your VAT return in March, paid the VAT in April, and receive payment in May.
  • Do you need help drawing up your liquidity budget? You can hire a bookkeeper or accountant via NOAB (in Dutch) or NBA.

Difference between liquidity budget and operating budget

A liquidity budget shows your income and expenses per month or per quarter. This ultimately also provides an overview on an annual basis. In an operating budget you budget amounts per year. These amounts do not include VAT.

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Do you have a question about financing or money matters? Contact the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce KVK Financing Desk free of charge: 0800 10 14

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