Need help fine tuning the budget.
Results 1 to 15 of 15
  1. #1
    Registered User mommy4ever's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Western Canada
    Posts
    3,244
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    158
    Rep Power
    23

    Default Need help fine tuning the budget.

    I'm setting up a basic budget.

    After all insurances, bus passes, dance fees, utilities, mortgage, debt payments(minimums) are made, we have $2650.

    From that I've not taken discretionary funds such as groceries, gas, and I'm not sure what else needs to be taken.

    Groceries I'm allotting $600, gas $200, I need a school fund for field trips, $30/mo, that can sit until needed. What else should I be considering. I'm looking at $1000 snowball. Maybe more, but I don't want to go too lean for discretionary things as it backfires on us every time.

    Til Debt do us Part sets it up as food, entertainment, transportation, gifts and misc.

    I think having some "play" money is good, a little to do with for whatever, dh likes a case of beer on occasion, or take the kids to the store, I like a pedi a couple times a year, a nice haircut.

    Food: $600(Family of 6, plus a home daycare)
    Gas: $200
    Entertainment: $50(that's what a dinner out costs the family)
    Gifts: $30(kids b'day parties?)
    Misc: $60
    School fund:40

    That leaves $780. Should we increase the snowball, how much should be put aside as "play money"?

  2. #2
    Registered User DJ1972's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    MO
    Age
    47
    Posts
    1,380
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    18

    Default

    I think the amount of play money you give yourself depends on how fast you want to getout of debt. I usually do $25 a week for my "play money." Do you have an amount set aside for home or auto repair/maintenance? Those are always the things that get us if we don't plan for them. Clothing, hair cuts, and medical are a few more categories we use. That's all I can think of for now.

  3. #3
    Registered User mombottoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Michigan
    Age
    61
    Posts
    1,843
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    21

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mommy4ever View Post
    I'm setting up a basic budget.

    After all insurances, bus passes, dance fees, utilities, mortgage, debt payments(minimums) are made, we have $2650....I'm looking at $1000 snowball...
    Food: $600(Family of 6, plus a home daycare)
    Gas: $200
    Entertainment: $50(that's what a dinner out costs the family)
    Gifts: $30(kids b'day parties?)
    Misc: $60
    School fund:40

    That leaves $780. Should we increase the snowball, how much should be put aside as "play money"?
    $2650 - $1000 (debt snowball) = $1650 - $980 (total of items you have listed) = $670 left over.

    What are you setting aside for savings? Retirement? Emergency Fund?

    If your expenses are as high as they are you really need a larger emergency fund than $1000.
    Last edited by mombottoo; 01-22-2009 at 11:19 AM. Reason: added thought

  4. Remove Advertisements
    FrugalVillage.com
    Advertisements
     

  5. #4
    Registered User mommy4ever's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Western Canada
    Posts
    3,244
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    158
    Rep Power
    23

    Default

    That's a good thought, I always thought $1000 was puny. But it is the baby EF. Maybe I should tuck away for at least 1 full month wages.

  6. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    23,290
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    15
    Rep Power
    48

    Default

    With today's economy, I would have at least 6 months EF. You're doing well with the snowball, so if it was me I'd take out $70 for play money (doesn't mean you have to spend it), and then decide how much goes to your EF and how much goes to debt. I'd probably divide the remaining $600 in half.

    Having that much in EF brings you a sense of security and peace. I'm all for getting out of debt, however with the way things are starting to go in Canada, you just might need that EF account.

  7. #6
    Registered User momofslg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    ohio
    Posts
    192
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    13

    Default

    Insurance co-pays, prescriptions, OTC medicines, vet fee, grocery stockpile money, clothing for kids/adults, vacations

    Those are the things I always forget about when budgeting

  8. #7
    Registered User mommy4ever's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Western Canada
    Posts
    3,244
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    158
    Rep Power
    23

    Default

    Ok, played with the numbers.

    Snowball will be between 1300-1500 each month. Variance based on how many casual kids pop in through the month.

    From Dh income, I'll deposit $100 per check, and from my income, I'll be doing $300-440 depending on what extra expenses come up. This covers our gas, food, entertainment and gift budgets, puts money in savings, money for field trips and other small expenses that come up at the school that nickel and dime me to death. At the end of each month, gift/school money will be transferred to a savings account if unused, the other unused moneys from groceries, gas and entertainment will be put on debt. It might only be $10 or so dollars, but thats $10 I'm not paying interest one.

  9. #8

    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    113
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    0

    Default

    I know I'm extreme, but I have zero play money in my budget. Every penny I have goes toward debt reduction.

    Your mileage may vary, but I am sick of this debt. I won't leave the house for weeks, other than church, to keep from wasting gas. The wife stops at the store she passes on the way to work if we need some food, etc. I literally may not crank my car for two or three weeks if I don't have any work to do. I do a lot of reading for entertainment.

  10. #9
    Registered User mommy4ever's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Western Canada
    Posts
    3,244
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    158
    Rep Power
    23

    Default

    As a family of 6, it's nearly impossible not to go out, as they are all in a sport. I try not to spend much, but then deprivation starts.

    During the week days I have 1 outting, I bring dd5 to dance, while she's at dance, I do banking, etc. Typically that's all i go out, once a month or so, I might have to do other errands. Weekends are another story altogether.

  11. #10
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    23,290
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    15
    Rep Power
    48

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 57plymouth View Post
    I know I'm extreme, but I have zero play money in my budget. Every penny I have goes toward debt reduction.

    Your mileage may vary, but I am sick of this debt. I won't leave the house for weeks, other than church, to keep from wasting gas. The wife stops at the store she passes on the way to work if we need some food, etc. I literally may not crank my car for two or three weeks if I don't have any work to do. I do a lot of reading for entertainment.

    I HATE DEBT WITH A PASSION!!!! I'm totally for this and that's what we did when we paid off our debt, as much as we possibly could. However, it's not for everyone and especially when you have kids that are involved in activities outside the home. There are still unexpected expenses. Our kids are in music, we had budgeted for that, however we had to pay a few $$$ everytime they were in recitals or for a special music book that wasn't planned. Some may say, well don't do recitals, use it for debt. For our family, having our kids in recitals was as important as paying down debt. I also don't want my kid growing up saying "all they ever did was pay down debt". Does that make sense?

    mommy4ever, you are doing a great job with snowballing. Keep it up.

  12. #11
    Registered User beks37's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Age
    38
    Posts
    1,179
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    163
    Rep Power
    16

    Default

    Don't forget to budget in pet food, heartworm pills, vet visits, shots, etc. I assume you have a dog from the picture in your avatar.

  13. #12
    Registered User mommy4ever's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Western Canada
    Posts
    3,244
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    158
    Rep Power
    23

    Default

    That is part of the misc fund. Her food is part of our food budget, she's a light eater, so cheap to please Heartworm isn't something the vet is concerned about either. Her yearly check ups and her spaying is all budgetted for.

  14. #13
    Registered User Cricketlegs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    4,225
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Rep Power
    34

    Default

    I think with the increase you made to your debt snowball that you should save what is left and get your 6 month ef set up.

    With the economy like it is better safe than sorry and besides you have a great debt snowball going.

  15. #14
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,803
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    9
    Rep Power
    22

    Default

    Don't forget hygiene and cleaning items. A lot of people include this in their grocery budget - maybe you already have.

    DH and I each get $15/month blow money. Its not a lot, but we're on a small income and doing our best to get out of debt too, and its helping - a LOT. And we still get a little bit to play with when we feel deprived.

    Also, we've got an ongoing gift "account" - its money that is transferred to our second checking every month, and I keep a register of it. That way when Christmas comes, or birthdays or valentines or anniversary, we can spend more than the $30 we have. You mentioned only kids bday parties, so maybe you already have household gifts budgeted for? If not, a system like what I was describing might be helpful.

  16. #15
    Registered User Contrary Housewife's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    7,767
    Post Thanks / WTG / Hug
    Blog Entries
    75
    Rep Power
    57

    Default

    You need something for home repair and household items. (what if your iron goes out? Or the microwave, vacuum cleaner or the computer monitor?) You'll want to build that up to cover major kitchen appliances or the AC unit or the water heater, etc. Don't forget costs for yard maintenance, gas for the mower, weed killer, and things like light bulbs and air filters for the home. You think it's little stuff but $5 here and $10 there turns into hundreds a year.

    You need a car fund that goes beyond gas. Think about oil changes, wiper fluid, antifreeze, brakes, new tires in a year or two....

    What about taxes? Do you pay property tax on your car? Excise taxes? Property tax on your home?

    Will the kids need school clothes or shoes in the fall? Do you have to pay for books or school supplies?

    Do you have any memberships that cost money? Library cards? Homeowner association fees? Church?
    Last edited by Contrary Housewife; 01-22-2009 at 10:01 PM.
    Stop trying to organize all of your family’s crap. If organization worked for you, you’d have rocked it by now. It’s time to ditch stuff and de-crapify your world.

    If you're not using the stuff in your home, get rid of it. You're not going to start using it more by shoving it into a closet.

    Use it up, Wear it out,
    Make it do, Or do without. ~unknown

    A clean house is a sign of a wasted life. ~unknown

Similar Threads

  1. do you use your fine china?
    By ladykemma2 in forum General Chat
    Replies: 45
    Last Post: 01-21-2010, 09:45 AM
  2. Doing some performance tuning on the forums
    By Gabe in forum Announcements
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-26-2009, 11:46 AM
  3. The budget's lookin' mighty fine!
    By MomToTwoBoys in forum Debt Reduction & Money Management
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 07-13-2009, 11:26 PM
  4. So what is everyone doing on this fine fine friday?
    By Shellshome in forum Frugal Friday
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 07-20-2007, 09:11 PM
  5. OB visit went fine
    By MMP in forum Pregnancy
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 08-18-2004, 09:15 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •