Even though I haven’t kept up with blogging, I have definitely kept up with the budget. It hasn’t been the prettiest, but we are doing pretty well. My June budget is ready to go! I will do a full June budget overview tomorrow, but for now I want to tell you how I keep things from busting my budget!
We all have expenses that are irregular. You know the ones: car tags, taxes, vet bills, co-pays, etc. These are ones that are hard to budget for because they don’t come up very often. We had one today: vet bill. No biggie, just vaccinations and getting heartworm medicine for Bandit. Here is how I managed to take the dogs to the vet without worrying about the budget:
Every month the dogs have two line items. One is cash that I pull out each month. They get $50 a month that goes into their joint envelope. Sometimes this money doesn’t get spent in a month. If it doesn’t get spent, it rolls over to the next month. They currently have $26 in their envelope right now, and the next $50 will get added on June 14th. This cash is for food, dog biscuits, and any other things I would buy at a pet store. It almost always goes to food, as we do not buy many extras for the dogs. Very rarely do I have to refill both dogs’ food in one month. Usually it is just one or the other.
The next line item is another $50, but this money gets transferred into their joint Capital One 360 savings account. This money also rolls over (and earns a very tiny bit of interest). This savings account is for vet bills, medication, vaccinations, etc. Today when I took the dogs to the vet, they had $297 in their savings account. Both dogs needed vaccinations (Bandit needed 1 and Rose needed 2). I also got Bandit a 6 month supply of heartworm prevention medication. (Rose inherited some from my sister, so she didn’t need a refill). The total came to $122.00. I was able to use our debit card to pay for it, and then as soon as I got home, I transferred $122 from their savings account to our checking account. We only end up using this account about every 6 months for these same types of expenses. By the time we use it again (in 6 months) we will have almost $500 in there. We have been lucky that we have not had any recent emergencies or anything major with either dog lately. We have in the past, but we have always had enough money in their savings account to cover it.
How do you save for those irregular expenses?