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Old 01-07-2013, 08:39 AM   #1
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Budget naive

I have loosely worked up a budget for us in the past but we aren't greet at sticking to it. For you budget savvy moms, how do you create a feasible budget and stick to it? Any tips for keeping each other accountable? We should be able to put a decent amount in savings each month but it doesn't end up happening on a routine basis but we need to be saving for a minivan along with general savings. Please help!

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Old 01-07-2013, 08:51 AM   #2
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Our ef goes straight to a different savings acct at a different bank. It takes 3 days to transfer so there's a cooling off period. We also have budgets for things like.clothes, school activities, car repair, vacation, xmas, etc and we total that up and divide it by paychecks. We then deposit that amount into a separate checking with am atm card. I take $ out of that only if it can be subtracted from a budget. I then have envelopes for things.like groceries, out to eat, extras. We try never to touch the bill account for anything. It has just enough to cover bills and that's it.

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Old 01-07-2013, 09:14 AM   #3
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Re: Budget naive

tithe and pay ourselves first, as in retirement and savings. then bills are paid, and we do budget billing on utilities. then we budget groceries, sometimes that fluctuates greatly, like summer we garden so it drops and winter we spend more due to no garden. if there is a great sale I stock up.
we usually have 1 or 2 large items we buy every year that we save for. last yr we bought 2 used vehicles and a new small John Der tractor. this yr we want to do vacation and possibly as new washer. we live far from anything so fun money isn't budgeted cause we have alot of fun just being gone with each other. when weather is good we are out side alot doing sports and fishing etc with each other. all free!

I think the biggest key to budgets is knowing exactly what to expect from your bills every month like I know our cell is 32.72 every month and electric is 119 though will be going up next adjustment I am sure. knowing your . exact costs, paying yourself then make every penny after that go somewhere, have goals for your money and remember to use what you have of borrow as often . as you can. when in the stores and you find yourself aimlessly wondering around, you are not budgeting your money wisely that day cause you are inevitably going to spend funds on something you don't really need
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Old 01-07-2013, 10:37 AM   #4
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Re: Budget naive

For us to have a workable budget we used mint.com a couple months to see what we were spending, along with getting actually numbers for all our bills on paper. We took the two and created a budget. That way we weren't picking random numbers for anything (like when we'd done our budgeting before and decided $400 a month sounded reasonable for groceries... without realizing we'd been spending nearly $1000!!).

As far as sticking to it, cash for groceries helps a lot and reminding each other daily!

Do you guys have 'fun money' or 'blow money' in your budget? I found that even a small amount helps, that way if I see something I want to buy that's not in the budget I can save up 'my' money for it, but often it helps me realize I don't need it. With DH it gives him money to spend on things like the fast food he just 'had' to have in the middle of the night last night without blowing the budget.

I get $25/m and DH gets $50/m... I wish I could convince him to do less, especially since he also gets a $25 gift card every month from his employer for biking to work, but he clings to that money pretty hard and he does work hard for it.
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Old 01-07-2013, 09:16 PM   #5
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I had set up Mint several months ago but it was very similar to the budgeting program my bank offers online so really didn't give it much effort. Today I went back in, updated info, downloaded the app and I'm going to give it a whirl. Used the amounts I set a few months ago and adjusted based on spending over last several months. Wish me luck!
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Old 01-07-2013, 11:01 PM   #6
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Re: Budget naive

We did it the old fashioned way...
We gathered our bills. We made a list of all our bills and expenses.
If there was an area like electricity that fluctuated. We budgeted the highest monthly amount.
With gas, groceries,clothing, etc we just made reasonable guesses at to what we spent in a year and then divided it by 12. We each get a certain amount of spending $. DH leave a certain amount extra in the acct. Anything over that gets transferred to savings once a month. (So if the electric is less or whatever ... it gets put into savings).
After doing this for 2 months.. we then re-evaluated what worked for us and what didn't. We have now been living on this budget for 2 years or so.
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