Ok, so I was supposed to post this last Tuesday, but I was really sick all last week. As in, running a high enough fever I was contemplating going to the hospital, sick. But I’m better now, so on to the promised budget!
My basic budget looks like this:
As previously mentioned, I do pretty well. Now up until recently my roommate was unemployed so money had been tight because I’d been loaning her some to cover some expenses. She is paying me back for that, but it’s not all at once. Another factor is that we’ve cut out a lot of unnecessary spending like Netflix and other monthly costs, but we still have some hold-overs like the storage unit. Right now we have a bunch of books we’re looking to sell off in there and after that we’re going to either downsize to a smaller, less expensive unit or cut the unit entirely (the preferred option).
Some of the expenses fluctuate like utilities and gas so I went ahead and assumed the largest average expense for gas and I added up 12 months of electricity bills (water is covered in the rent) to get an average monthly cost (rounded up to the nearest tens place). The cost of utilities will rise, but the money I save in the cooler months will go to the higher summer costs.
Insurance includes car and rent, groceries account for my food as well as feeding the cats (and litter costs). Now you’ll notice the incidentals line? That’s there because it’s unrealistic to expect yourself to NEVER buy anything on impulse or to need a bit of money to pull from for unexpected expenses (I lost/broke my phone charger and need to replace it for example). I realize this is usually one of the first lines people ditch, but that’s a good way to end up with money going to things you don’t want to use it for. I’ve currently budgeted myself $30 a week, but that’s a flexible number and just what I’m giving myself to start with, I can adjust it to save more money if that’s too much.
The remaining income will be split between savings and debt eradication. I probably won’t completely stop putting some money away every month, but to get an edge on my debt I’m going to build up an minimum emergency fund and save more slowly as I put more money towards debt. This was a lesson to learn as well because I was trying to pay down my debt too fast once and wasn’t saving any money for emergencies and had an emergency and guess where the costs for that went? That’s right, back on my credit card. So emergency fund it is.
The last week wasn’t the best start to the budget, but I’m back on track this week and my roommate is also down for the budget so we’ll be saving money and paying off debt together! Next time on Budget Woahs: steps to take to make paying down my debt easier!