I’ve decided – I have opinions and I’m going to share them.
So – Number 1 – I am going to start living by a budget. Actually I decided this last month. And then 6 months before that. But this month (September 2012) I actually started living it.
I don’t know if this is a universal feeling, but its mine, I have always felt that if I had to think about money and about how much an item was, that was low class. Here is an example: if I go to the repair shop and have them fix a hole in my tire – I wouldn’t ask how much that service was going to cost. I just let them tell me at the end. Then if it was more than I thought it should be, I was angry. Not at them necessarily but at myself for not asking first. Feeling like I let them get one over on me, take advantage of me in some way. So this month I finally asked. How much is this going to cost? Are there any other costs I should worry about? I felt empowered by this simple question. And by getting an easy answer. Any place I do business – restaurant, car repair, shops – any place, I shouldn’t feel embarrassed to ask. All of these places want my money, my business and in some cases want my return business. There is nothing stopping me from asking. Except by own feelings of embarressment.
So here is how my budget works out. I’ll update at the end of September with how well I did.
Gas and Car Repair – $200.00
Restaurants = $180.00
Grocery = $150.00
Extras (Clothes, books, etc) = $100.00
These are all the variable items in my life. I’m not counting incidentals that are required. Like doctors bills, hospital bills. Also I’m not the primary grocery buyer in my household so I don’t have to budget much for that.
I just did a check up for the month and some categories I’m waaaaay over. Some I’m at about 50%. So overall I’m pretty happy. Especially considering there were months previously that I spent nearly $1000 on Restaurants and Extras!
My big reason for doing all this is I turned 30. Suddenly I’m not a kid anymore. My health scares me. And should anything happen I don’t want to be in debt. I don’t have any big bills except by orthodontics and my credit card bill. My ortho is something that I know when that will end. I have a pay off plan with my Dentist. So that I’m not really counting. However my credit card bill is me – all me.
This blog isn’t going to be just about finances however. I also plan on discussing my braces (including pictures), food/restaurant reviews, computer stuff I find interesting, and other miscellany.