How to Live on SSI Disability

Social Security Disability is a government program that aids individuals that have become disabled and unable to work. Social Security will usually begin after five full months of a disability. You must apply for the benefit through the Social Security Administration. If you are approved for Social Security disability benefits, you will receive a notice in the mail from the Administration that will list the start date of the benefit and the amount of money that will be sent. The Social Security payments are made monthly.

Create a strict budget. List all of your monthly mandatory expenses and discretionary expenses. For example, the rent or mortgage is a mandatory expense, whereas going to the movies is a discretionary expense.

Compare the total monthly mandatory expenses to the monthly Social Security disability payment. The leftover amount is the amount of money that will be available for discretionary spending. The amount of discretionary spending is the maximum that can be spent in the month. If more than the discretionary amount is spent, there will be a net loss for the month.

Break down the monthly budget to a weekly budget to track expenses weekly. Simply divide the monthly income and expenses by four to determine the weekly discretionary spending.


  • Budgeting websites such as allow you to automatically track your income and expenses. The web-based programs will also help you design and implement a budget.


  • Following a simply monthly budget and then using all of the discretionary spending will not allow you to accumulate any savings.