Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Our Monthly Budget

To lay the last bit of our financial foundation, I wanted to share our monthly budget.  Our exact expenses change a little month-to-month, but this is the basic picture of our spending:
  • Mortgage - $900
  • Emergency Fund - $500
  • Tax Account - $400
  • Home Account - $350
  • Roth IRA - $300
  • Vacation Account - $250
  • Cash - $200
  • Extra Roth IRA - $120
  • Extra Masters Money - $125
  • Car Payment - $330
  • Car Insurance - $110
  • Gasoline - $150
  • Electricity - $150
  • Cable & Internet - $100
  • Cell Phones - $80
  • Water - $30
  • Garbage - $20
  • Groceries - $300
  • Fast Food/Restaurants - $200
  • Misc Bills/Car Maintenance - $200
  • Entertainment/Misc Fun ($75 each and $100 joint) - $250
  • Medical - $100
  • Maid Service (biweekly $45) - $100
  • Lawn Service (biweekly 8 months a year) - $50
  • Netflix - $20
  • Pet Expenses - $100
  • Massage Envy - $50
  • Total = $5485
That comes to $65,820 a year.  We make $78,000 before taxes plus the $4000 a year my hubby makes as a sports official.  Taxes, the pension, the 401k, and our benefits account for the other $16,180.

Needless to say, I am anal enough to keep up with every single expenditure.  Unplanned expenses are taken from the appropriate target accounts.  Also, before anyone asks, I contribute considerable time to my charities and we both use some of our "fun" money for the charities of our choosing.

I didn't start this blog to brag.  This is to show that a teacher and an office worker can use their money as a considerable tool to build wealth in less than 5 years.  By spending less than you earn and saving the rest, you can create wealth.  All of my favorite blogs boil down to that basic idea, yet people question it's possibility.  Saving is's even fun.  I never worry about making our next mortgage payment or having enough to pay our bills.  That is priceless to me.  :-)

Would a budget like this help you?


  1. Testing here BFS
    (budgeting fun stuff)
    I selected the anonymous.
    Dno't know about the other choices.
    Leaving Sat for vacation so I may not be able to post much here.........I'll be back. :-)

  2. I was just talking with my wife on how friends of ours can't live on his salary of $200K, they also need his bonuses to help ends meet. Your situation shows that if both spouses have the same goals, it's amazing what you can accomplish.

  3. Good test BillV! This is a basic Blog Spot site...should work the same as others. Although it should be safe to post as normal - it should hide your email, feel free to try posting with your name and no email address too. :-)

  4. MikeS, I have a few aquaintances in the same boat - they make much more than us and still have trouble making ends meet.

    It's sad when the teamwork aspect of marriage is overlooked. They'll have to talk sometime, right?

  5. Sad things is they have talked. I think the husband has just given in to the situation. He would like to be able to just live on the salary, but as resigned himself to having the bonuses make up shortfalls.

    Thankfully, my wife and I see eye-to-eye. Any bonus I might get, is just that, a bonus. It should not be counted on as regular income, even if it makes up 30-40% of overall compensation.

  6. MikeS, I like the way you think...30-40% of your income received as large pleasant surprises sounds heavenly. :-)

  7. Out of curiosity, do you budget anything for charity? Some of those folks who seem to make a lot more pay WAY more in taxes which really cuts into a budget (you especially get slammed if you don't have any kids), plus some wealthy people give a lot of their income to charity and to family members who are less well off.

    Also, people who are doctors or lawyers usually have large student loan debt from their many years of education.

  8. Anon, we don't budget for charity but we donate our time and use our fun money for causes we want to support. You can see my view on charity in this post:

    Honestly, I feel like our time is worth a bunch too. Donating time also allows us to save as much as we do for early retirement...that's when I hope to be a full time volunteer.