When it comes to your finances creating a budget is half the battle! The other half is following the rules you have set forth for yourself. I think we can both agree that it’s challenging enough to track basic monthly expenses— if you underestimate your budget or forget any additional expenses that may arise it’s easy to fall into a budget deficit.
Let’s discuss some commonly overlooked expenses for you to consider next time you are planning your budget.
Do you pay for insurance, annual subscriptions, your vehicle registration? It’s best to divide semi-annual and annual expenses by 12 to get the monthly amount. Then, place the funds aside for the time that they come due. This can prevent being caught off guard by one lump sum and incurring any late fees for not paying on time!
Spring will be approaching before we know it and soon after begins wedding season, birthday parties, and cookouts! All things we look forward too, but the expenses for gifts, attire, or an additional dish to pass can add up — especially if you are attending multiple events throughout the season. Did you budget the cash to be able to attend these events? If not, spending the extra money on a gift or new attire could put you over budget.
Maybe it’s the stop for an extra cup of coffee in the morning or your co-worker wants to switch things up for lunch and grab carry out. Eating out can add up quickly without your realization. Although a few dollars here or there may not seem like it will break the bank, if you aren’t paying attention to your budget and haven’t set money aside for these extra treats a few dollars can turn into hundreds in a snap.
Setting a limit to treat yourself each week will help avoid any excessive spending and allow you to curb your cravings!
Children’s Extracurricular Activities
While we as parents never want to hinder our children from following their aspirations, the unexpected cost associated with extracurricular activities can throw your budget for a loop. Plan out your children’s activities on a calendar that way you can set money aside ahead of time for enrollment costs when they come due.
Apply these same rules to any family fun, plan family outings or vacations in advance to find deals that aren’t available last minute! Try to also consider free fun such as the beach, free zoo admission days, or a backyard movie night.
Auto and Home Maintenance Repairs
Most often when budgeting the first things we factor in are our home and transportation costs such as rent, car note, auto and homeowners insurance, gas, and utilities — but what about the other associated costs. Like our health, our home and automobiles need check-ups occasionally, and from time-to-time additional maintenance is required. Home or auto repairs can be some of the most expensive which is why it is important to regularly maintain your home and vehicle. Being proactive can avoid costly repairs down the road!
Tell us about the biggest set back in your budgeting plan!