Our January Budget
I realized after attempting to show an accurate picture of our current budget using a piechart here, (and failing miserably) that because of the way we budget, the only way to paint a realistic picture of a budget was to give an accurate accounting of where our money has gone in any given month. As previously mentioned, we have a Manulife One account and I had to make some major adjustments to the way we budget in order to get the most out of this account. It took me about a year to really feel like I was 'on top of things' in this area.
Each payweek (my husband and I both get paid at the same time every two weeks), I determine how much we've made and take any amount over $1800 and enter this into the ledger marked 'Mortgage/ emergency fund'. This means that we make more headway on paying down the mortgage during the summer (busy time at work) than during the winter (slow time, less hours). The rest of the $1800 is written into other ledgers to determine how much money we have to spend in the other categories.
Our budget categories are as follows:
Property Tax, Mortgage Interest & Fees
Baby's Spending/ Education Fund
Car/ House Maintenance
I have played around with the amounts that are designated to each category over the last 6 months and think I've gotten them to acceptable levels. I've also added and removed categories. If you see something that's missing I probably lump it in to one of these categories. I also have no problem borrowing from one category to pay for something extra in another etc. We even go into the negatives in a category or two at times if there's a good reason. Sometimes there's not a superb reason but as long as we're being responsible then I figure- it's our money...
For January, I calculated all the money that came in and the money that went out and represented them with another handy dandy pie chart here: