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Thursday, September 6, 2012

: my financial plan + how to make an 'easy' budget :

lets talk finances!
and yes, that totally relates to health & wellness.
if your budget // spending // finances are out of control, i am guessing you feel that way about the rest of your life, as well.

a lot of my friends & family tease me because of how frugal i am.
and i am. man, i am cheap.
blake & i live in very little, on purpose.
having too much really stresses me out. the things we own are things we use.

when we buy something new, we donate two things. 
and when we have 'extra' money leftover at the end of the month [after we have paid loans & bills], almost all of that money goes to charity. some would say we live without much, but i would say that we buy organic foods, give to charity, have enough clothes & basic needs and we always try to give back.

so, i wanted to share my financial plan with you. my main focus with working 3 jobs is to get my student loans paid off. like most american college grads, i have had a [huge] butt-load of loans. each & every month, i have been plugging away & my ultimate goal is to have them paid off in february 2013!! [right now, i only owe a little over $7,000!]

since i am a visual person, i took a 12x12 piece of scrapbook paper to create my budget. i have it hanging on the fridge, so i am able to track everything.
i also made a mini-copy to keep in my planner, so i am always aware of my budget // spending // goals.

before i filled it out, i went through and made a list of categories ; all places that my money needs to go.
once i had my categories, i figured out how much i would be bringing in each month. from there, i started filling in my categories.
some things, i knew my amounts [bills, rent, health insurance], but some, i didnt [fun money, emergency fund, ect].
i started messing around with the numbers, until i came up with a figure that worked for me.

my categories are : rent, groceries, utilities, daphne, savings, emergency fund, fun money // donations, student loans, health insurance, credit card.

my credit card bill is pretty small [a couple hundred bucks], so once that gets paid off, i will put that money into my loans // savings.

what if i am under goal?! 
if i spend less than i budgeted for, whatever that amount is, it will count as a bonus loan payment.
except for the 'daphne' fund. if we are under budget for her, we just keep rolling over those funds to prepare for emergency vet visits or extra treats // toys.
[ps : she puked up a huge chunk of plastic bottle this morning ; cool!]

tell me : do you budget? does it work for you?
do you have any questions for me?!
please share your budget tips in the comments!