How We Budget & Spend Extra Expenses
If you’ve read my $25 budget posts or any of my budget posts at all you’ll know that my husband and I don’t spend a lot of money on extras or non-essential items. We each have $25 a month to spend, (though he never uses his) and beyond that the rest of our money goes into our savings account.
You may think to yourself:
So what about extra expenses? What about car troubles, sickness, or anything that breaks? And beyond the emergency things what about fun things like a vacation, camping trip, or new tv? Do you NEVER buy those things cause if so that’s not the life for me!
Fear not, today I’m going to talk to you about what we do for extra expenses, what they are to us and how we pay for them.
So let me breakdown 4 categories of extra expenses to us and examples of how we use them:
1. We need it but not every month so it doesn’t need a budgeted category.
Here is an example to explain. I have been getting migraines and someone recommended computer glasses to possibly help. They were twenty dollars on Amazon and Greg and I decided since it was for health and the migraines were becoming worse it was worth it right away to just buy these from our savings account. (Our savings account is essentially where all our non-essential spending comes from and where all the money we save every month by not buying a lot of non-essential items goes!)
It was a random item that didn't fit any other monthly category but was necessary we both decided so it was bought out of that fund.
An example of a non-essential item that turned into one we budget for now was again for migraines. I decided to see a chiropractor to see if it would help. For awhile this was just coming out of extra expenses (savings account). But when we decided this would be a monthly thing to help my head, we moved it over to a budgeted category.
2. We want it and both agree in the investment, both item and price.
An example of this was recently when we bought a keyboard. We had talked for so long about buying one but had never actually sat down and did it. My husband and I both love music and write songs so we wanted a keyboard to be able to use for that. Finally we decided we needed to just sit down and invest in one. (Sometimes we are too cheap for our own good and it takes us awhile to actually pull the trigger.) So we bought a piano for around $250.
Now this kind of bigger purchase does not happen every month in any way and I think it’s been the biggest purchase from this fund for the year. But it’s an example of an unnecessary, investment purchase that we both sat down and talked about for awhile before buying it. Oh, and we love it, no regrets! (Also, we had the money for it. In case that wasn't obvious, our extra expenses (savings account) has enough money for all these things.)
3. An experience that we both agree on and price.
These can be small like camping throughout the summer or they can be big like a mexico trip we are taking this fall to celebrate 10 years together. This comes out of our savings or “extra expenses” category and again is talked over and agreed upon beforehand. There are definitely a ton of experiences that we don’t buy, but that is also our personality. We are not super into activities all the time. Gifts are our love language! ;) It just depends on what you love the most, we are all different!
Finally the one everyone thinks of when it comes to building a savings or an extra expenses fund. I put it last on purpose. I think many people use emergencies as the reason people should save their money. While I 100% agree that you should have a savings for that reason I think it is only one of the many reasons to not spend all your money each month.
Only sometimes do I have to use the money I save for emergencies. Most of the time I’m rejoicing for that money not because I am worrisome of an emergency any minute, but because I know too that if anything fun comes up I can take part if I want! That I can make the decision and my bank account doesn't.
Does that help understand a bit more how we do things? I felt like it was necessary to have a blog post like this to really explain how I come about money, budgets, spending and saving. I think it can be a little different than other people and so I’m always open for more explanation.
You all know I can over explain! ;)
Let me know if you have any other questions and make sure to think about building that savings up for these reasons!