Tuesday, August 12, 2014

A Little Something On The Side.

There are two things I should discuss at this point.
One is budgeting and the other is giving.

We'll start with giving as it is quick and simple.

Dave Ramsey says in his Total Money Makeover to budget in money that we give, about ten percent.

I am not against giving to charities what I am against is charities making you feel like your contribution is not big enough.
We are far from being well off. We are on one income and we have debt. If we gave ten percent of our income to charity we would not be on track to getting out of debt. That may sound selfish to some but I'm putting my family first and I honestly don't have an issue with that. We put coins in the Guide Dog Societies collection dog each week when we do groceries, the kids know where that money is going and how those dogs help. Apart from random donations on behalf of loved ones who have passed away that is the only giving we do.

When we are debt free we will choose how much and to who we give more of our income too.

My priority is getting out of debt so we don't end up being the ones who need charity. When we are in a position to help others financially we will until then we will teach our kids about volunteering.

So basically to me it's a personal choice. If it's important to you to give then do so, if getting your own family stable first is important then find other ways to contribute to society.

Now the budget.

Each week or month depending on your pay cycle you need to have written down - or typed, just have it in words - exactly where every single dollar is going.

When you get paid visit an ATM and take out the cash. Find envelopes or jars or put some of your odd socks to use, label each one and put the cash into them.

Grocery money, clothing money, entertainment money...each one has a separate envelope.

The reason for the envelopes is to help you budget better each month and to encourage you to stop using plastic. Even if it's our savings account when you pay with card you buy more.

If you run out of grocery money and need more food you'll know to budget more for food and groceries next time. If your entertainment envelope is over flowing you'll know you put too much in that category.

It is also very important to have 'spending money' for you and your partner. You are being strict but you still need some fun. Even if it's only twenty dollars each a week/fortnight make sure you each have money to do with what you please.

All work lunches, snacks and transportation costs need to be budgeted into another area. Just because one partner may leave the house for work does not entitle them to more spending money. If you both work outside the home this should be easier.

Below are some links to resources on budgeting and one is to Dave Ramseys web page. There is a heap of useful information there and you can sign up for free newsletters.




See you at step two next week.


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