tonight we put together my husband's budget – tips/strategies

posted 1 week ago in Finances
Post # 2
Member
4287 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

How long does it take for him to be reimbursed for work expenses, can he not put this on a credit card so he isn’t budgeting from this salary for them and then pay it from the reimbursement? 

What happens to the that $800 after he gets it back currently? Does that go into savings? 

I would decide the savings and discretionary spending based on his lowest wage so he has a minimum to aim for in terms of saving and so he has an idea of what he can spend freely.  Then you can both look at how much extra he got past 2200 on a particular month and figure out if some of it needs to go to anything in particular or if all the surplus goes to savings. 

Post # 4
Member
6447 posts
Bee Keeper

sunworshipbride :  I honestly don’t think this is going to work. Not having a set discretionary spending amount is going to be too loose for someone who overspends; you’ll want him to only spend a little once he gets his commission but then he’ll feel like all of the commision is play money. You have to look at the person plus the math. Set aside something small so he can still have a life, but not go crazy.

Is it possible for him to get a company card so he doesn’t have to wait for reimbursements every month? Expecting someone to front nearly half their base salary on business expenses every month is ridiculous. Then he can take that money and focus on his debt and not have to worry about business expenses.

Have you considered moving to cheaper housing? 39% of take home going towards housing is very high and won’t help the debt situation either. 

Post # 5
Member
637 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: City, State

How much does his income vary?  Are we talking 2200 some months, 7500 in others? Or are we looking at a much tighter range like 2200-2400?   Can your salary alone pay the bare minimum for household expenses?

At a glance, this budget appears too tight.  There’s no money left over for a haircut or takeout until he gets paid back from work.  That’s why he’s always out of cash. Life happens.

I suggest one-three difficult months for you both.  Sell what you can, take an extra gig or two on the weekends, babysit, tutor, strip your expenses to the BARE minimum… If you can do this while working, you can start to base his discretionary spending on what he made last quarter, not on the current month’s income. The key to making commission based incomes less stressful is predictability. If you get to the place where you’re spending December’s income in March, you’ll be able to manage shortfalls with a 90 day lead.  

 

Post # 8
Member
330 posts
Helper bee

Since you’re married shouldn’t the budgeting be based on what you both make and total expenses and savings for the entire household instead of only focusing on one person? 

Post # 9
Member
637 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: City, State

sunworshipbride :  This is great! I suggest that he takes 100% of his bartending money to use as a cushion.  This month’s income is his discretionary spending for 60+ days from now.  That strategy helped me a LOT when I worked commission based jobs.  

Post # 10
Member
6447 posts
Bee Keeper

sunworshipbride :  he should keep the work expenses and the reimbursement completely separate from his personal finances. A separate card for expenses and reimbursements might help mentally so he sees very clearly “this $872 check from work is to pay that $872 credit card bill” and then stop using a credit card for his personal spending. Switch to cash for awhile and when it’s out – it’s out. But expenses and reimbursement are totally separate and he can’t dip into the credit card or reimbursement check if he runs out of cash. 

Then I would take that $800 you currently have budgeted for his work expenses and split it – half to debt repayment and half for life. That works out to $100/week that is used for food, haircuts, new shoes, whatever it is he needs that week. And that allowance should be bugdeted weekly so that it’s easier to track. It does mean that the debt repayment isn’t as aggressive as you’d probably like, but you need to do what’s sustainable even if it takes a little longer. Any bartending money should also be split between debt and some fun money to keep him motivated to hustle. 

Post # 11
Member
4287 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

sunworshipbride :  I don’t understand how that only leaves from from the fixed expenses? Surely if 800 is going towards work expenses for that month he is also getting reimbursed for the previous month of work expenses?  $800 for work expenses that get reimbursed shouldn’t be deducted from his salary every month. 

He should set up a separate credit card for work expenses so it doesn’t get confusing.  Mixing it with his personal spending is unprofessional. 

Post # 15
Member
6447 posts
Bee Keeper

sunworshipbride :  can he open a new card and stop using the old one just to get a fresh start? If not, I know you don’t want to bail him out completely, but would you consider doing just enough so that he has enough room for the new expenses and he can try the new plan?

What are these expenses anyways? Is it within his power to lessen them? Like if he’s taking clients to dinner and drinks try lunch and coffees instead? 

ETA: I would also seriously consider putting all bartending money for the first month toward debt repayment. That way he gets the breathing room for the work expenses, but he knows eventually he’ll get to have a little fun money from that work soon. 

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