Money, Marriage, and Monthly Budgets…
Carrie and I decided to start posting our monthly budget. (YIKES!)
This post is an attempt to explain our intentions.
(Link to our monthly budgets and our net worth tracker at the bottom of this post, please read this post before jumping straight to the monthly budgets.)
For those who don’t already know, our marriage started off on extremely rocky financial ground.
When we first got married, Carrie owned a house what was about to be foreclosed on. We were able to avoid foreclosure with a short sale by paying about $16,000 to the bank. (The house was hers, the money was mine…so, yeah, that was fun.)
We started an intense monthly budget and cut our spending to the bare minimum. We had to, just to make it through that first year.
We never went without or went hungry, but it was challenging and very eye-opening.
Our financial situation tested our new marriage in many ways. Most of the challenges caused by our financial situation were non-financial in nature. We learned how to trust each other, communicate with each other about serious issues, and work together as a team. We learned how to align our values and priorities with each others. We are better off now as a result of the strict financial habits we formed over that first year. We had dozens of intense conversations about money that most couples avoid for decades.
Carrie and I have been thinking about posting our monthly budget for about a year.
We want to provide a real life example monthly budget.
We believe that an open and honest conversation about money is important.
We believe that an open and honest conversation within YOUR marriage is important. Better conversations about money can improve your marriage, in fact, it could save it.
We earned $2508 more than we thought we would. However, we spent $1652 more than we planned to. The reason for most of this is a business trip to Chicago. This trip was for Carrie’s job. We paid our way out of pocket and then we were reimbursed. The extra expenses and the extra income balance each other out. It makes the differences between May budget and May actual make more sense.
Our income for June is going to take a huge hit. Two reasons for that:
1: Carrie is on maternity leave and her paycheck will be taking a huge hit in June, like almost down to zero.
2: I lost some audio producing work that I had been doing for about a year.
We pay car insurance twice a year so we will pay $568 during June. (Geico rocks!)
We will need to pay $400 in first quarter personal taxes this month so we don’t get to far behind on taxes this year.
On the up-side, we might have an additional $1800 come in during June in the form of more insurance reimbursement for the birth in April. We always try to aim low on the income side so we are forced to be more conservative.
We plan to out-spend our June income by $2843. If the $1800 comes in we will only over-spend by $1,043. We can afford to do this because we have a few thousand in cash savings to pull from. Our income changes every month, so some months we out-spend our income and some months we spend a lot less than we earn. Gotta love having an irregular income!
More on the up-side, we are going to cancel our DirectTV bill this month. I’m sure there will be a cancellation fee of some kind, but it will save us money in the long run.
Lastly, we are going back to using cash for restaurants. Since having our baby girl in April, we have been eating out a little more than we usually do. So, we decided to use $100 cash for restaurants for June to put a stop to that.
|May / June 2014||May Budget||May Actual||Difference||June Budget|
|Restaurant||200||335||-135||0 ($100 CASH)|
|Car tag / title / tax||0||0||0||0|
|Car gas / oil||300||214||86||300|
|Income – Spending||132||988||856||-2843|