Budget + Free Printable!

Budget + Free Printable!

Today I'm excited to share with you our budgeting plan & a free printable for you to print out and use at home. We would really like to be able to buy a house & start a family in the next couple of years, and hopefully this plan will help us do that--and help you reach some of your financial goals as well!

This spending plan is the one that Ricky and I have been using the last several months to keep our monthly budgets. We have used the Dave Ramsey program in the past and had a lot of success with that, but fell off the wagon sometime last year. This spending plan is based loosely on that concept of a zero balance budget (that is, budgeting out even the money you will save or use for "fun money" so that the amount at the end is zero each time). I've made this plan into a printable for all of you in case you're curious, so you can click on the link to download it and use it yourself!

Allocated Spending Plan
(Downloadable version doesn't have Ricky's & my names on it ;) )
For each paycheck, you can enter the pay period & amount at the top, then deduct expenses all the way down. For Ricky & I, since we are a two income household and we are paid bi-weekly, we use one budget for each month and in the pay period date box, I also put (J) or (R) so we know which paycheck we are working with. You can adjust to your own pay schedules as well. 

We tend to combine this with the envelope system, making it even more Dave Ramsey-esque. Again, we were on fire with the envelopes for about a year and a half and then once we missed a month, we just never got going again. So this is my commitment--making it in public that we will start up again!
Using envelopes for your cash categories instead of always using a card helps keep track of what you're spending your money on, but the bigger benefit for me is that it makes the spending feel more "real"--I'm less likely to make impulse buys because I'm watching the amount in that category dwindle down. 

If you're not sure what I mean by "the envelope system", it's a way of taking your budget one step further by taking certain categories (for us, it's food, entertainment, clothing, gifts, travel, household items, etc) and taking out the budgeted amount of cash each paycheck and keeping them in "envelopes". You can use real envelopes, but most people use a form of expanding file or wallet. Then, when your money is gone for that category, you can spend any more for that type of item until your next paycheck fills it back up. If you have excess, you can roll it over to the next pay period. The rolling over helps save up for things you want or need but don't want to spend all at once--you can set aside a smaller amount each month and because it's no longer in your account you won't accidentally spend it. 

Please let me know in the comments if you think this will be helpful to you, or if you have any questions about how to use either the spending plan or the envelope system! You can also check out my Contact Me page and get a hold of me via email as well. 

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