Saturday, May 22, 2010

Budget, Budget, Budget!

I'm really excited about something...

And, if it wasn't obvious about the title, it has a little to do with budgeting!

And by a little, I of course mean everything!

Last week, with the arrival of our April paycheck, Ian and I sat down and hammered out an estimated budget for the first time EVER in our married life!

We've always wanted to have a budget, but with 8 months of unemployment and the other 14 months or so with a very unsteady and unpredictable income, we were simply getting by and were not able to budget.

Now, though we have a very tiny paycheck (close to half of what a teacher would expect,) it is at least dependable, and we were able to sit down and list what types of items we wanted to budget for. So here's a list of things we came up with:

Tithe- it's important for us to give back some of what God has blessed us with.

Savings- in addition to our retirement fund, this is savings for any contingency that may come up, or any large purchase we may want to fund (car, adoption, house down payment?)

Investment- also in addition to our retirement fund, this is our long term savings, meant to supplement our retirement.

Vacation Savings- We opened up a whole new savings account to start putting aside funds for vacation or travels. I'm really excited about this one, because in our {almost} 2 years of marriage we haven't gotten to take one vacation {boo!} but with some careful savings we will!

Credit Card and Student Loan Payments- probably the least fun of our budget items, but it will feel SO good when this is payed off. We're not really using our CC anymore, except for items that our company reimburses us for.

--Pulled out in Cash--

Grocery- This part was interesting, because groceries up here in Canada are VERY expensive, but we {almost} stayed within our weekly budget! Next week we'll only eat out once and I will keep my baking for others done to a minimum, since that is where we went over.

Spending- !!! Ian and I are giving ourselves a small set amount each week to do whatever we want with. Whether it's coffee, date night, a book, or a video game, or even something you want to save up for {can you say camera lens?!?} this is our own money that we don't have to discuss with each other before hand. I'm super psyched about this!


And last but not least, we are leaving a little bit each week in our checking so that eventually we'll have a cushion to fall back on!

That's all. And maybe that was too much personal information, but I love finances and it's great to feel like we are being wise stewards with all that the Lord has provided us with!

How do YOU budget {or do you?}


Stacey-Lou said...

that sounds great! very organised. being a student I don't have a choice really; I budget or I don't eat. But I tend to spend money on things I don't really need (coffee, chocolate, fanta etc) but I am working hard to cut this habit! good luck with your budgeting!x

Erin said...

We are working really hard on our budget right now since Andrew's hours were cut and we will be down to one income in a few months. Basically... we're pretty much budgeting the way that you are! I'm trying to get better at couponing to reduce our grocery bill.

Natalie said...

this month i'm keeping track of every penny we spend and then next month we are re-vamping our budget because i'm pretty sure it's way outdated and needs to be much more realistic!!

Unknown said...

I am still at university so dont really budget. But I am careful with my money and never splurge!

Lyryn said...

When we got married both my husband and I made such a good amount of money we really didn't need to budget. Now after 6 years, we really wish we would have. It's great that you are getting on it now! You go girl!

Unknown said...

it's great that you are starting out with a budget. We didn't in the beginning and then it seems that everytime we try we never follow through, due to deployments and the extra pay that comes with that we are blessed to get our dept paid off but budgets are really good. Great job!

Anne @ Sincerely, Britches said...

Budgeting has become very important to us during the fast few months. Setting money aside for car insurance, doc appoints, groceries, paying off debt, etc. We have tons if sub-accounts to our checking account at the Credit Union so we can divide up each paycheck and make sure the money is there for what we need to pay. It's working out great!