Are you budgeting your money every month but still seem to go over? What categories are you including in your budget? Are you positive you have all the categories you need?
Budgeting is the bread and butter to your finances and the only way to stay on top of them is to get it right the first time. When I first started doing of family budget, I would just take mental notes and jot down what I believed I needed to include. And as each month went on, I added a few different categories here and a few different categories there. Before you know it, I had a budget with DOUBLE the categories and we weren’t going over budget unintentionally.
What categories are you missing in your monthly budget?
Make sure you include personal spending money into your budget.
How many times have you looked back at your spending to see some miscellaneous personal items on your balance sheet and realize that THAT is part of the reason you’re in the red.
Not budgeting out some money to spend on yourself is a mistake people commonly make when working through their budget for the month.
I know that some months, I focus so much on saving as much money or slashing costs as much as I can that I forget that I like to enjoy life too. Life isn’t all about saving and hoarding it away and in my opinion, money is no good if it’s not being used for one of these three reasons: to grow, to secure, to live.
And in order to live, you need to allocate funds to yourself.
Note: this is different than paying your savings first. That category is allocated to saving towards a goal or type of security. Fun money (personal spending money) is for that awesome decor piece you saw on Amazon that you just can’t pass up or that Oreo milkshake that you want on a random day.
Hot tip: Use cash as your personal spending money so you won’t be tempted or forgetful and go over budget. Once the cash is gone – it’s gone. This will also teach you to be smarter with your purchases if you’re able to physically see how much you’ve spent vs. how much you truly have left.
The last thing on your mind might be the maintenance your vehicle requires.
Yes, you might be including gas into your monthly budget but what about the regular maintenance?
Of course, these things may not be every month all the time but with the many different requirements of cars, you’ll find that your car will need at least one of these a month. These are things like:
- Car washes (more likely in the summer)
- Car Part (headlight, wiper blades, etc.)
- Registration Fees
- Oil changes
- “Under the hood” products (windshield wiper fluid, radiator fluid, etc.)
Do you include home supplies in your budget category?
- Paper towels
- Toilet Paper
- Dish Washing pods/liquid
- Over-the-counter medicine
- Laundry necessities
- Cleaning necessities
Note: we tend to buy most of these items in bulk so we won’t have to allocate money to this category every month.
Relevant Holiday’s and Birthday’s add up!
Which you will most likely feel bad for. So! If at all possible, plan your events ahead of time so that you’re prepared when necessary!
A couple things to think about: consider keeping track by setting a reminder in your calendar when it’s do and “check” it off once paid. After a month, if you haven’t used the subscription services – cancel.
Are you accurately budgeting every month?
So if you’re budgeting your money every month and still going over somehow, double check your categories with the ones below to see if you’re forgetting anything:
Holiday’s and Birthday’s
If you are, that’s fine! Next steps are to decide if the money your spending is necessary (I’m talking to you subscriptions) and if it is: add it into your budget before you add in the things you can live without.