By: Revanche

Spending and Saving: August

August 1, 2006

In a very weird way, I like being on a budget because I like to know exactly where every single penny goes. However, my attempt to simplify financial matters so that I can branch out into doing other sorts of research instead of just staring at my online banking pages has spawned an entirely new system that I’ve talked about before. Chunks of my paychecks are allotted to different accounts and theoretically that was to cut down on the detail work. I’m still getting used to it, but since I’m not really at a point where I want to track my net worth, I’m going to try a different kind of tracking, just a very simple overview of what I’m actually saving and spending each month, per check. It’ll look something like this:

Savings (per check)
Budgeted: 200, pre-tax 403 (b)
Actual 1: 200, pre-tax 403 (b)
Actual 2: 200, pre-tax 403 (b)

Budgeted: 540, post-tax E-fund
Actual 1: 365
Actual 2:

Spending (per check)
Budgeted: 75, car insurance
Actual 1: 75
Actual 2:

Budgeted: 360, everything/personal,etc.
Actual 1: 360
Actual 2:

Budgeted: 100, household bill
Actual 1: 0 🙁
Actual 2:

I’m trying to reconcile the fact that my budget actually requires me to make a lot more than I make without overtime. Another factor in the reduced cash flow is my huge increase in 403 (b) contributions but I’ve decided that it’s a necessary evil because I have to reduce my taxable liability somehow and besides that I’ve got a lot of catching up to do! So, weird though it is for a hard-core saver to say: when I come up “short” each month, it’ll be the savings post-tax category that gets shorted because that figure is a high ideal number. I would reduce it to a more reasonable number but … well … I just don’t want to. Ok, I don’t want to because I know I usually work a good chunk of overtime, so there’s no reason not to maintain a high expectation – except for those times I just can’t do the OT. Maybe I’ll have to settle for a range: 450-540.

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