Last year our budget went kinda sorta wonky. Okay, I’m lying. It went flying off the rails at 200/mph, caught fire in mid-air and spiraled out of control down the runway. That’s one of the reasons that we started doing our 2015 Budget Challenge. We knew we needed to get things under control and that if we didn’t, we were going to be in big trouble soon.
One of the biggest things that we had an issue with was that Tom and I just weren’t on the same page financially. In fact? He was pretty much in the dark 99% of the time. It has been really hard for me to go from a single mom who was solely responsible for everything to having someone to share that responsibility with on a daily basis. I would be off doing one thing with our budget, while he was thinking something totally different. Needless to say? It wasn’t very long until the budget train had skipped the tracks.
So to fix it, we knew we had to get on the same page.
Each week, on Fridays, we sit down for a few minutes. Sometimes it really does take 20 minutes, other times it takes 2. We balance our checking account, discuss the current state of our budget, upcoming income, any upcoming bills and anything we were surprised with over the week. If there are any issues, we take this time to figure them out…together.
This one simple meeting has been what I think is the single most important part of us getting our budget back on track. There’s no more spending money for things that there isn’t any budget left for, there’s no confusion on what budget has funds left and best of all? We’re working together as a couple.
Do you and your better half do a budget meeting? If not, they’re super easy to do!
You’ll need to gather a few things first: Your upcoming bills, a short bank statement or your checkbook register and of course your better half. Together, sit down and go over EVERY dime of money that you have spent the past week. Total up all of your expenses and then total up your income. Did you spend more than you brought in? If so, you’ll need to make some adjustments for the upcoming week.
Once you’ve got the transactions sorted, take a look at the upcoming expenses. Can you pay them? If not? Find a way. After this part is done, take a look at your savings. If you’ve got money left in your budget, think about putting it here.
See? That’s it! They’re really easy and I can guarantee…they’ll help you stay on track far more than you think!
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