Post # 1
Mrs. Bee and I haven’t ever really formally budgeted our expenses. We both don’t spend that much money – our major expenses in recent years have been eating out and cab fare. And once I realized how cab fares add up, I made sure to use only busses and subways… that allowed us to save a surprising amount of money!
Looking back, we probably should have had a formal budget for day-to-day living. We used up most of our savings paying off college debt and the wedding… which actually helped us keep our living expenses down when we first met. When you don’t have much money, you can’t really spend all that much!
I’m thinking we should start budgeting and saving though, because Mrs. Bee likes to go on regular trips! Those are hard to squeeze in without a formal budget… and who knows, maybe she’ll start a blog all about traveling one day. 🙂
How about you: do you budget your monthly expenses?
Post # 3
Mr. FF and I do use a budget. I have a spreadsheet all set up. This all started when I was wondering one month how much money we just "throw" away. After looking at it and seein the numbers, we realized something had to be done.
You would be surprised to see where all your money goes.
Plus Mr. FF and I are trying to save money up for a baby since I am unable to have one the natural way. So this is something that we are saving for so we won’t be 80 when we finally are able to get a baby!
Post # 4
- Wedding: July 2018 - Outdoor ceremony, banquet hall reception
I never budgeted AT ALL before I met Mr. Powder Puff, so it was hard at first to adjust to restrictions in what we did and spent our money on, but seeing the benefits has made it all worthwhile.
Mr. Powder Puff is really great with money, and his habits have been rubbing off on me. Like Firefighter says, it’s really eye opening when you see where all your money goes!
Post # 5
We don’t really, but we are realizing that we need to start! We have a few wedding-related expenses come up that were a bit of a shock to the bank accounts, but ended up being okay…until my car started acting up. We were told we should just trade it in rather than trying to fix it, which means another car payment. We’re also looking for a house, which will mean another payment! With all the new expenses, we’ve realized we’ll need a budget to make it through without too much debt.
Post # 6
We tried doing a budget for the wedding, but we stopped since we were annoyed w/ keeping track of the little amounts spent for the wedding…
needless to say, we’ve never kept a record or budget of what we spend day to day… i would love to, but I think we’re both too busy to do such….
we both aren’t big spenders, but we do like to take at least one big trip a year and many many many small trips.
I always wonder how much people make and if they can live still survive… when I was making 20K a yr (which is more than what I make now) I was able to pay rent (living in SF), put away money into my Roth IRA and living pretty comfortably month to month… so it doesn’t make sense to me that people who make a lot more than that can’t… of course I didn’t have any other savings other than the Roth IRA….
and also I guess to go with this topic, did you guys check each other’s credit score before you get married?
Post # 7
I would say we have a very loose budget. We know where 2 of our paychecks each month go (1 to savings and 1 to rent, gotta love Boston). We also use mint.com for all of our financial accounts (check it out! it’s wonderful!) As a result, we can keep an eye on things by category, how much is in our checking, savings etc. We have a "budget" set up in there for a few categories (food, shopping, entertainment, health stuff, etc) and we try not to exceed it too much. But honestly, if we’ve paid all of our bills and have money in our checking account, we don’t watch what we spend too closely since we’re already saving 1/4 of our incomes (on top of 10% 401k contributions).
We started our wedding planning with a budget, but then we stopped keeping track after I got really stressed that we spent $23 more on invitations than we had budgeted for. We threw the budget out the window at that point. We knew what we were going to pay for the "big" vendors (venue, food, photography) and already had that in savings. Everything else would likely come out of checking before the big day, so we saw no reason to worry about it if we had enough money for it.
Post # 8
Very timely post! We were just talking last night about working out a monthly expense budget. I think seeing how much goes out for expenses we help us keep our spending in check. Since we got engaged, we have been more frugal in anticipation of the financial outlay for the wedding.
Post # 9
I have a very detailed budget for all of our mothly expenses. It is not always a planning tool, but I do look at it and say "oh, we have a little extra this month, so it would be a good time to replace X." We also used it to look at how much we need taken out of each of my paychecks for our short term savings to float next semesters tuition payment.
I used a couple of sources (Kipplingers & the Washington Post’s grad guide in particular) to set up an ideal budget based on what % experts recommend you spend on each category. After a few months, we started adjusting those to fit our needs–for example, we spend nearly twice what the experts recommend on healthcare, so we needed to find ways to cut costs out of other areas.
One thing I started doing at the end of 2008 was to pull together an overview sheet so I could see what our average income & expenses were for each month all in the same place. It’s a really helpful tool, especially with a new emphasis on saving.
Post # 10
Yeah — chicagohusband is very good with money. I wasn’t a big budgeter or saver before him but now we are.
Post # 11
I’ve budgeted myself since I got my first job at 16. It was harder to do when I graduated and started working full time and made more money than I’d ever made before! I had a few months of spending sprees, but now it’s been super important to budget with the wedding coming up, a big move and switching jobs. Mr. LL was never a big budgeter and hates tracking his spending , but is usually really good about how he spends his money and is pretty frugal (uses coupons, only goes out for lunch once a week, etc)
Still, I think it’ll be an easy transition, (because we have similar spending habits) even though we’ll be very poor with fi being a graduate student and the cost of living so high in SoCal!