How to Write a Budget Request

by Louise Bennett; Updated September 26, 2017
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A budget request is a business letter seeking funds for expenses and operating overhead for a project or department within an organization. Less formal than a traditional business proposal, this request still must adhere to strict business writing decorum and provide the reader with a thorough understanding of the project while answering any questions that may arise.

Items you will need

  • Detailed budget
  • Audience contact information
  • Supporting documentation
Step 1

Find the correct individual who oversees the budgetary requirements for your particular project. Within any organization, there may be several different individuals which oversee spending and budgetary considerations. Take the time to investigate your audience thoroughly. Ensure that you acquire the correct spelling and contact information.

Step 2

Provide historical background for the project. This should include any past experience with similar projects, previous budgets or spending plans, and the success gained from previous endeavors. Include any recent trends that may impact the success or failure of the project.

Step 3

Specify the purpose for the current budget request and provide detailed plans. Include how the money will be allocated and what costs will be covered. For example, if the budget will be spend on staffing and supplies, annotate what percentage of the budget will be allocated for each requirement. Address any questions that a reasonable person may ask regarding the project upfront to avoid delays in approval or a formal declination of the request.

Step 4

Attach a detailed budget for the project or department expenses. This will give the evaluating individual the exact numbers for the project. Like a standard budget, this section should include precise line items for each expenditure required. If exact figures are not available, it will be necessary to estimate the total expense for that line item.

Step 5

Close the request by summarizing the important details covered. This can usually be done within one or two paragraphs. Then, include your name and contact information. Suggest a follow up meeting to further discuss the funding request.

Tips

  • Business writing must always be clean and concise. Provide enough information to present a valid argument for your request but do not try to oversell with fluff. Remember, your reader will have many projects to review. Don't waste her time with unimportant details.

Warnings

  • Be careful when estimating future expenses. Estimating too little for a line item may cause your budget to be significantly under what is actually needed. Estimating too much may cause your budget to be considered unreasonable and be rejected.

About the Author

Based in central Georgia, Louise Bennett has been writing professionally since 1999. Her business, financial and career articles have appeared in hundreds of print and online publications. She received a bachelor’s degree from Columbus State University. An avid reader, Bennett is currently working on her first novel.

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