Sunday, March 9, 2008

Our Budget

Without getting too personal into how much we make I am posting our budget. I love to look at other budgets to see how I am doing and how others spend their money. You can see other recent budgets at Thrifty Florida Mama, and Blessed Frugalness.

$$$$ 401-K funding on percentage of income with company match
10% tithe on gross
$$$$ we support some friends that are missionaries
$1583.00 mortgage
$57.00 extra mortgage
$645.00 medical flex account(we have 3 in braces and put aside $5000 in savings for this expense and are having money taken pre tax out of check. See more here Our normal yearly medical expenses are $80.00 a month. I transfer prescriptions between stores to use their offers for gift cards. Now that I am getting so much free from CVS and Walgreens this will probably go down further.)
$200.00 electricity/gas
$65.00 water
$70.00 cell phones (3 phones,basic phone at $50.00 plus add two for $10.00 each)
$40.00 home phone and internet
$30.00 Direct TV
$500.00 groceries (including paper and cleaning)
$100.00 clothes
$80.00 household (decorating, maintenance, haircuts, photo, mailing)
$83.00 activities (baseball,church camps, basketball. I give each child $200 a year and they pay any additional fees if they want to do things)
$300.00 auto gas and maintenance
$75.00 gifts I put $50 aside for Christmas and use the $25 month to find clearance items.See my gift box here)
$80.00 school( I home school and have most of texts. This is for class fees and association fees with our group plus fees for the two in public school to take certain classes
$120.00 auto insurance (3 cars- we pay for daughter's gas and insurance because she has done well in school and received a scholorship to college. This has been her job to do well in school. We have full coverage on my vehicle and husband's vehicle because although they are paid off they are both worth over $8000.00 and it is worth the cost to not have to pay out of pocket to replace. We carry liability only on the auto daughter drives and tell her if she wrecks it we will do without replacement:))
$120.00 allowances ( we give each child 1/2 their age per week. They get a raise on each birthday. It has been a good amount: a 8 year old gets $16.00 a month, a 17 year old gets $34.00 a month. They have chores to do to get the money. They have to tithe and save some then buy what they want)

Our kids take on babysitting jobs, mowing grass, raking, selling lemonade and cupcakes and muffins to earn money when they want to go somewhere like church camp that is over $200. Or they save their birthday and Christmas money that they get from grandparents.

I don't currently budget vacations. My parents own a time share so we have been vacationing with them and all we have to pay is some of the food,gas, and what entertainment we do. We have unexpected income through the year that covers this. We do buy season tickets each year that saves us money. We bought season Disney tickets for all 7 of us for $1200 when we were in Florida. This let us in Magic Kingdom, Epcot,and Animal Kingdom. My MIL gave us the money for Christmas and told us she wanted us to take the kids. She didn't know we would be able to buy the season tickets and use them for more than one trip. We stayed with my dad in a time share unit so did not incur hotel costs. When we moved to AL we bought Space and Rocket tickets. It was over $20 a piece to get in and my dad plus 3 others were up. For $120 we bought the family pass and it included 6 guest passes, so it was cheaper to buy the season than daily pass. We are going to Gatlinburg for Spring Break and are getting Dollywood and Dixie Stampede tickets on the base for a cheaper price. We thought that we would rather go to a "new" destination in the summer and fall so did not buy the season tickets; but they were only about $100 more for Dollywood.

We have $10000 in an emergency fund plus the $5000 to put into monthly budget for braces. We need to increase life insurance and fund a Roth IRA when we get next raise or additional money unexpected (like the tax rebate)

I don't have a real amount that I set aside for car service. We usually just adjust everything if something happens until we are back on track- money will usually come in that we didn't expect.

I take my money that parents give at Christmas and birthday and will buy an outfit, magazine subscriptions, or things that I want. I used to get about 6-7 magazines a year, but only get 3 now. I find so many at garage sales and thrift stores that I decided to only buy the ones that I would not be able to wait to find it used and wait on the others.

I don't account our tax refund into budget. We don't pay Federal taxes because of having 5 kids and we are still getting back a lot of money this year. And then, we will get the tax rebate.

We used to get a lot of overtime with last job and we were doing remodeling/handyman jobs that would bring in unexpected money. My husband has a salary position now so we do not get overtime, just time off, and we no longer work any 2nd jobs(YES!) so I am adjusting to being more set in things rather than knowing money will come in unexpectantly. I will be tweaking everything this year. We will put enough aside from taxes to take care of any of the things that I don't have budgeted, and then adjust as I see how much our utilities and gas and food actually come to be. Your budget is a guideline and a goal. We have had years where we could not fund even all the basic budget items and we had to be very strict. Through the years it has been a tool to keep us focused and where we can tell our money where to go instead of the money telling us where to go. We have the luxury to be more flexable now. I want to encourage those of you who are getting out of debt or just starting out to hang in there. Life will not always be so tight but if you will sacrifice now for a little while you will change your future. See my post on how we stopped living pay check to paycheck and sacrificed by working two or four jobs to win.


Jennifer said...

Wow found your blog from Thrifty Fl mamas site, who happens to be my sis in law. Love your blog, keep it up.


Angie Hopkins said...


Thanks so much for the encouragement. It is so nice to see a family who has been where we are and has "won"! Thanks for posting your budget, too. It helps me see where we are heading. Keep up the great work,

Thrifty Florida Mama

paperjunk-lc said...

300 on gas and 500 on groceries...I applaud you.
I fill up my car once a week and now that's roughly 45 a week and then there is my husbands gas.
I can spend 100 at the grocery store and that won't last the week any more.
Keep up the great work!

Southerner said...

paperjunk- I don't work so don't use a lot of gas. I combine my errands and do everything one day a week or on our way to/from school. Hubbie works within a 10 minute drive. Daughter's school is close enough to walk. Son rides bus.
Food- CVS/Walgreen deals and stocking up sale items.

Kim said...

All your numbers are really low considering the size of your family!

This is the first year I've decided to do a budget where $ goes into different savings accounts to pay for yearly expenses like taxes and insurance. Normally I'd just pay it out of checking with my buffer and not track as well I should of been.

Crystal DuBois said...

I love the idea of allotting 200.00 a year on extra activities! I think I am going to borrow that from you!

Marva said...

Great job and thanks for the shout out! Don't mind at all! I like how you do the activities category. We will have to add tha tone in before you know it! Blessings!!!

Katie said...

We are like minded..our budget is quite similar & I've got clearanced gifts for everyone in my closet!!

Cassie - Homeschooling Four said...

I read your post also about working hard to get out of "getting by". We are "getting by" right now. I am always looking for ways to save more here and pay less there.
I am not working and I homeschool. I have thought about going back to work part time in the evening just to get us ahead and more comfortable.
Your budget makes me consider this possibility again.