Today's post is about my budget. I tried searching for when I posted my last budget, but all I could find was this, and that post is from September of last year. So I definitely figured that I should update this. Not a whole lot has changed, but this helps me keep track of myself as well.
Also, right now our goal is to increase our income by an extra $500 a month by doing side gigs things.
- Mortgage, home insurance, property taxes: $964
- Car Payment: $0, I'm paying it off on Monday, I promise!
- Gas (car): $350
- Electricity: $40
- Gas (house, heat, stove): $75, this has been a great winter!
- Cable: $68
- Internet: $50
- Car Insurance: $150 for all cars
- Groceries: $300 a month
- Eating out/Entertainment: $300. This is still a variable amount, but we try to keep it below this.
- Cellphones: $100
- Sewer: $29
- Trash: $17
- Water: Around $25 a month
Our food budget varies greatly from month to month. We need to do better with controlling this. Lately, we've been on a steak kick and have ate it way too much. And I've been trying so many Pinterest recipes and that's been adding to our food budget. However, we have been eating SUPER healthy, which is good! Past months were really good, but recently not so much.
I don't think there's anything missing from this list. I'm also of course saving for my vacation fund as well. And that pretty much just gets whatever money is left funneled to it. Usually at least a couple hundred. And this money is usually from my extra income that I make for the month. It makes vacations hurt a lot less.
I'm still guilty of not “paying myself” first. I should be saving and paying off debt first in order to increase my net worth, but it honestly scares me that something expensive might come up towards the end of the month and then I'll be screwed. Yes, I know that's where the emergency fund comes in, but I'm weird and OCD like that. I like to have a nice cash flow throughout the month.
However, I do think about using a portion of this money and throwing it towards debt. I could eliminate a lot of my student loans by doing this. I just love that buffer though.
Some of you are probably wondering where retirement comes in, my work has a retirement plan which is extremely helpful since right now since I am mainly trying to pay down my student loan debt. I do of course pay some of my own towards retirement, but definitely not 50% of my own money or anything. Right now, between my work's plan and I, about 25% of my salary is contributed towards saving and retirement.
However, I am aware that I should be applying some more towards retirement, I do plan on doing this soon. I always think about how I could gain better interest in other areas such as investing, and I'm still thoroughly thinking about this. Does anyone have any opinions on this? Pay down debt faster or do something that will gain higher interest? But then there's always the compounding effect.
Does anyone have any tips regarding my budget? Any opinions? How's budgeting going for you?