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Tips for preparing a project budget

Budget Preparation

Getting Started

Budget Template

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Consider all expenses. Major categories include:

  • Personnel (salary + 20% fringe rate) – see Faculty Compensation Policy
  • Travel
  • Equipment (single items costing $5,000+)
  • Other direct costs
    • Consultant fees
    • Computers and office supplies
    • Marketing and Promotion
  • Indirect costs

Indirect Costs

  • Indirect/overhead costs are those goods and services that are needed for a project, but not purchased or secured because of the project. For example, keeping the lights on in the building, facilities staff, general office supplies that are essential to the work, but not directly attributed to the project.
  • The university allocates awarded indirect costs following the 30/30/40 rule: Thirty percent (30%) is allocated to the PI/PD’s unit budget; Thirty percent (30%) is allocated to the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research to support grant and contract development/administration; and Forty percent (40%) is allocated to the general operating costs of the university.

Budget Justification

The budget justification is just as important as your budget. This is your opportunity to explain why each expense is reasonable and necessary to complete your project.