Wednesday, October 22, 2008


When selling real estate the agent has a saying "location, location, location". Well our saying with saving money is "planning, planning, planning". We plan everything. We plan vacations. We play pregnancies (sometimes :)). We plan weddings (hopefully before the pregnancies). We plan when, where, and what we will eat, wear, and do. We plan when we will plan! We plan EVERYTHING! So why wouldn't we make a plan when we go to the grocery store or when we make a purchase. To help you know how much money you have for this planning you need a budget. If you don't have one you NEED one.

First if you get paid by the week then you need a weekly budget, if paid bi-weekly then a bi-weekly budget or 2 budgets a month, if paid monthly then a monthly budget - I think you get it.

Second you should write you budget down. I use a cheap wide ruled notebook that I pick up at Wal-Mart for .10 cents during the school sales. Your budget has to account for monthly bills, such as but not limited to:
  • house payment
  • vehicle payment
  • gas/electric payment
  • telephone (estimate based on previous bills if you need to)
  • cable/satellite
  • internet
  • water (estimate)
  • Insurance (medical, auto, life, etc.)
  • Cellular bill
  • credit cards

Make sure to include an extra expenses, things like - tithes, gym membership, or any other monthly bills that are recurring.

Next you need to estimate how much you will spend on groceries and gas. Then make sure to give yourself and your spouse an allowance. The way I do this is I give my husband and myself a set amount each month. We can spend this on whatever we want but we can't have any more. Our gas money doesn't come out of this money just things that we personally want to buy. Like a book, or some kind of workout equipment. This keeps us from going over our budget or drawing money from another section that is ear marked for something else.

Hidden coupon: Sure

Be realistic with your figures. I know sometimes we can't pay a whole bill and we have to "rob Peter to pay Paul", as the phrase goes, but adjust your budget to show this.

Makes coupon better: form

Everyone will have a different way of keeping up with their budget but as long as you have a way that you can see you will start spending less. Some people get out the money for each expenditure put it in an envelope and when the money is gone from the envelope it is just gone.

I personally write down all my bills, as I pay each bill I check it off. I also estimate how much I plan to spend on groceries and gas for the month. I also write down my husband and my allowance amounts. After I make a purchase I write that amount down in my book and subtract it to see how much I have left in that area for the month. Occasionally I will spend more in one section than I was suppose to and I have to do readjust my budget to reflect that. This helps me over the month to see where my money is, where it is going, and how much I have left.

Now that you have planned your budget you know how much you can spend on your groceries and household items which will help you to plan your future shopping trips.