Budgeting woes…

January 27, 2015 at 11:22 pm Leave a comment

Sometimes budgeting can be discouraging.

For me, that happens when goals suddenly change.  In my most recent case, I had two major expenses change in big ways on the same day.

One expense turned out to be $400 more than I expected.  Let’s call that Expense A.

Expense B was also about $400 more than expected and could not be paid the way I had planned.  This expense is one that gives a discount if it’s paid early.  My plan to pay it was to charge it to a 0% credit card, then start paying it down in a few months, and pay it off over about 9-10 months.  Unfortunately, payment by credit card was not allowed as it had been in the past.  This meant I had to overhaul my budget so that I could save up several thousand dollars in the next 6 months to meet the “early” deadline.

The overhaul required taking money out of my Emergency fund, stripping out my rainy day funds (money being saved for Christmas, Home Insurance, Property Tax), and take contributions out of my car replacement category  (driving an ’06 now), and a few other smaller categories intended for home improvement projects.

Now, my Christmas, Home Insurance, and Property Tax categories must be completely funded during the last 6 months of this year.  My new plan shows me putting a whopping $162.37 in my car replacement category by December 31st.  In August, I start saving about $600 a month for Expense A for next year.

It’s only January 27th, and my financial year looks pretty bleak.

But, there is hope.  Thanks to my budget, I have a plan!

Trying to handle these expenses without a budget…  Well, that would just be crazy.  I’d end up putting lots of spending on credit cards, building up debt.  I’d be very worried about making sure all the bills were paid.  It would be much more stressful, especially when additional surprise expenses show up (which they always do).

So, while I do see some woe, I also see the hope.  And I know that I would not be able to do the things I’m doing with my money without a budget.

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