How do you budget your money?

posted 4 months ago in Money
Post # 16
Member
391 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I’m going through this right now. I was always good with my money and always sent a chunk over to savings before it would dissappear but I want to get even more serious with savings and wanted to see how much I actually was spending on stuff compared to what I thought. 

 

I get paid a chunk on the 15th, and I put over half of it into savings.. then I live off the remaining chunk to what I “budgeted” for. Then on the 30th, I get the rest, and thats when all the bills and rent come out. and the I have a remaining little chunk until the next 15th..

 

I tried a whole bunch of finacial saving apps, and I didn’t like any of them. But I found one that is so simple and basic. its a brown wallet called “spending”

Post # 17
Member
674 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2017

LilliV :  For us, yes. I tried Mint for a while but didn’t love it, and the YNAB app is really user friendly so we actually use it. It’s especially helped us save money in areas like groceries, which pays for the $7/month cost of the program. I think it might be a style thing really; it’s very much like a digital version of the envelope method. It’s also very easy to track real expenses and move money around to cover unexpected costs. There’s a lot of flexibility with the categories/budget lines, and you can quickly reproduce your budget for the next month. Also they have the ability to set up savings goals which has helped us save for baby, Christmas gifts, visiting home, etc, plus general emergency savings. We’ve been able to put a lot more into savings with it than with an Excel spreadsheet method or Mint. 

Post # 18
Member
3237 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017 - City, State

We each have separate accounts our paychecks go into, and have a certain amount moved into our checking and savings account each month. It’s automatic so we consider that money already gone. Our joint account is used for all joint expenses and experiences, like groceries or going out to dinner. 

For my personal account, I take out a specific amount of cash every Friday, and that’s my spending money for the week. If I run out, I’m done purchasing things that week, so that’s how I keep myself on a tight budget and that allows me to put away more extra money than I would have otherwise. Also, forcing myself to use cash, and keeping all credit and debit cards at home at all times (unless they’re specifically being used for earning points) prevents me from impulse buying, as charging is much easier for me than actually watching the cash leave my hands. 

Post # 19
Member
5 posts
Newbee

I really like You Need A Budget. I’ve been using it for about 3 years, and have more than tripled my savings account in that time. It is very similar to the envelope method, the way they phrase it is that you “give every dollar a job”. When I get paid, I allocate money to various spending categories and savings, and then use the app to track my spending. It really helps me pay attention to where my money is going. It also has nifty reports that show you your spending habits over time, net worth, etc. There is a subscription cost, but I believe you can do a free trial for a month or so to see if it works for you. 

Post # 20
Member
4 posts
Wannabee
  • Wedding: August 2019

I use spreadsheets. I just list all my vendors, expenses for each and tot up the total see see what I need to save up and I have another tab for savings to see what I have and predict I will have. I have two columns – total paid and total due for each. 

I save every month by putting money aside at the start of the month so I can’t accidentally spend. Most of the vendors requred a depsoit so I took that out of the total due. 

Post # 21
Member
1581 posts
Bumble bee

We follow Dave Ramsey (financially, not religiously).  We followed the baby steps, budgeted every dollar, paid off 112k in student loans and a car note.  We’re now debt free and working on building a 3-6 month fully funded emergency fund.  Then we move on to paying off our house, which we have run the numbers and set a lofty goal for us of being mortgage free by 40.  That’s 7 years away for us.

We have 2 methods, we have a clipboard with all of our monthly expenses and due dates, and we have a place to write in the actual payment amount for each month.  We also have a notebook where we run the numbers of balance-expenses.  Then we can budget the extra into savings or cash flow plans (previously debt payoff).

I check our accounts freeeequently.

Also, our food budget was ever challenging.  Especially since my husband was the one who was managing it.  After several months of the budget changing–we agreed to a set amount.  Now, we pull out that cash amount and my husband can spend however much he wants on whatever groceries he feels necessary.  But once the cash is out, it’s out.  He’s come a long way and now budgets that cash very well.

Post # 22
Member
263 posts
Helper bee

bakerbee09 :  I just budget per paycheck. I started doing that when I was a broke college student and it just stuck with me. I put my monthy bills and amounts on the calendar in my day planner (I count savings as a bill). I also keep a running list of my “wants:” new clothes, a trip, a fancy dinner, a big gift I’d like to give or donation I’d like to make.

 

On payday, I pay all of the bills due for that paycheck, buy one or two of my “wants,” and then once all that’s out the door (or bank account, rather), I set myself a budget for fun money. I make it realistic. I used to tell myself I won’t go out for dinner and happy hour, etc. but who am I kidding? I know I will so I might as well budget for it. Being realistic has helped with my overspending. There are some months where I’m really low on fun money (like now-tax time!) and some where I have more but you have to strike that balance between being realistic but not too indulgent for your means.

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