A poll of Canadian spending habits finds that only one-third of those surveyed actually set budgets, and even fewer review their purchases on a monthly basis.
The Bank of Montreal report suggests just 34 per cent set budgets for expenses such as housing costs, food and insurance.
And only 22 per cent review that spending each month to determine whether they are staying on track.
BMO believes Canadian households are finding it more challenging to balance household finances.
The bank says household debt, excluding mortgages, has doubled in the past decade, with the debt-to-income ratio hitting a record high 153 per cent earlier this year.
The Bank of Canada and others have repeatedly warned Canadians to get their finances in check while interest rates are low, but many are taking advantage of low borrowing rates to pile on debt.