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Minnie824
03-29-2007, 01:35 PM
What categories do you have separated for cash envelopes each week? I saw a list on the other thread of one persons, but I want to make sure I don't miss budgeting for something. Thanks!

Plantlady
03-29-2007, 01:37 PM
Are you talking about household budget, or vacation budget?

Minnie824
03-29-2007, 01:42 PM
Household budget... so far I have groceries, clothes, babysitter, eating out and gifts. What am I missing?

Plantlady
03-29-2007, 01:47 PM
I do:

Groceries (I buy household products at the same time, and lump it together)
Pet Food
Preschool
Gas
School lunch money
Karate (Or any sports here, I guess)
Personal (mad money)
Oil change (I'm in charge of this, for some reason, not DH)

Probably some would include clothing or haircuts.

My DH takes care of the rest of the bills... my envelopes are basically what it takes for ME to run the household, including kids and their activities.

I do love the envelope system. It's the best way I have found to not go over budget on items.

tbrenk
03-29-2007, 01:48 PM
I do:

Groceries (I buy household products at the same time, and lump it together)
Pet Food
Preschool
Gas
School lunch money
Karate (Or any sports here, I guess)
Personal (mad money)
Oil change (I'm in charge of this, for some reason, not DH)

Probably some would include clothing or haircuts.

My DH takes care of the rest of the bills... my envelopes are basically what it takes for ME to run the household, including kids and their activities.

I do love the envelope system. It's the best way I have found to not go over budget on items.

It it hard to start the first month?

KristinU
03-29-2007, 01:51 PM
Ours are:

Food/Groceries (this also includes toiletries etc. for us)
Family Fun
DH "blow" $
My "blow" $
DS's "commission" (allowance)
Copays (this also includes some cash building up for vet payments)
Auto Maintenance (oil changes, tires, etc.)

We're about 3 months into it and we did tweak the envelopes the first month, but now these categories seem to be working for us. You probably will too...just write on them in pencil ;)

feedindy
03-29-2007, 02:11 PM
We only use cash envelopes for the first 3 categories. We set aside a monthly allowance for the others in a savings account and pull it out as needed. This way we earn at least a little something and have access to it when something is coming.

Groceries
Dining
Mad Money
Household (water softener salt, air filters, air duct cleaning, etc)
Gifts
Clothes
Car Maintainence
Medical
Recreation (this is for things like sports, lessons, uniforms, etc)
Pictures (I spend a lot on this so it required its own category)
Entertainment (Blockbuster Online, zoo membership, family fun)
Gas, sort of (we over-estimate and do our best to not travel if we are cutting it close, but there isn't much more we can do to keep this down if gas goes way up.)

To answer a previous question, it was slightly hard to set up at first because there is nothing there for the first month. For example, we have no birthdays, etc in January (well, my daughter, but it is at the beginning of the month and paid for in December) so had we started right away there would have been quite a gift fund by March. We just started early this month so when I had 2 baby showers (one that I hosted), a birthday and teacher going-away gift to pay for it was a bit of a stretch.

bookgirl
03-29-2007, 02:23 PM
I pay bills out of two library paychecks so that gets direct deposited then I pay cc's, car payment, insurance,student loans, storage, gas (if I don't use a gas cc which I try to avoid) and sometimes a misc item. My two checks from therapy that I do with dhs clients I cash out right, give my share of the mortgage and utilities whats left is split into TRIPS (usually go someplace twice a year or three maybe) SPENDING (my money for cokes, grocerys, and misc stuff), CAR (oil and repairs), SAVINGS (which was building my ememgency fund but now it's just extra) CHRISTMAS (which is also presents for BD's), MEDICAL(bc or visits), and EXTRA TO DEBT.

Works for me. I also try to 0 balance my checking with each new paycheck and put the extra into my savings.

kkmcan
03-29-2007, 03:12 PM
We just started in Feb. and so far we love it! We keep all bill money in the checking account until it's due and then I pay them. We take out cash every paycheck (every 2 weeks) for our envelopes. Once we got going we had leftover cash last week and that was so much fun. Think we'll have extra again next week and I'll put that in the Disney Vacation jar.

Food/groceries
Dining Out
Dh blow money
My blow money
Kids allowance
Kids activities ( sports, girl scouts, chorus, golf etc)

Also we keep gas money in our account because it's easier to run the debit card at the pump than go in and wait in line.

Mermaid02
03-29-2007, 03:15 PM
Can someone explain this a little more to me? A pm is fine- or right here on the thread. Do you estimate what you use monthly and then break that into weekly payments?

feedindy
03-29-2007, 03:41 PM
I used last year's Quicken reports to set my system up, which helped a lot. What I did was look at where I spent money and how much I spent on things. Then I divided by 24. Twice a month on payday I withdraw that amount and put it in the proper, labeled envelope. Then I only spend what it is in that envelope for each category. So if I run out of dining cash and we want to go out, too bad!

I also have to really use my calendar to make some of it work. For example, I know we will be traveling next weekend which usually means drive thru. I have to skip the drive thru during errands the week before so there will be extra dining money when we need it.

It really helps prevent the whole "my sister's birthday is this month, but I don't have money so I'll have to charge it" issue. When the time comes that I need a gift for whatever reason, I just spend it out of my "gift" envelope that was already set aside for that occasion.

Plantlady
03-29-2007, 03:46 PM
I forgot, I also have allowance for the kids, for another envelope.

For us, it was not tricky to start at all.

My DH provides the only income, and it is a montly paycheck. He asked me to write down how much cash I needed for "running the house", so that I would not touch the checking account. He's doesn't like two people sharing an account. (one would think after 11 years, he's get over this).

So, every month, I make up a "mom bill" and request the proper amounts of money. Then, he gives me the cash, and I divide it up among the envelopes. This cuts back entirely on spurges by me, because I Have to pull the money out of an envelope to cover the expense.

I imagine you could easily do weekly or bi-weekly budgets the same, by just figuring out what you need out of each check, pulling out the cash, seperating it, and then not touching the bank accounts again.

When I don't get around to putting the money in envelopes, I tend to buy small things here and there, that eat up the cash. So, the envelopes work best for me, so I can see where I am pulling money from.

Stein
03-29-2007, 04:37 PM
Ours is simple:

Food - groceries and eating out
Gas
Other - everything except food or gas
Wife's spending money

kileybeth
03-29-2007, 06:09 PM
oh bother, am I the only one with to much "week" for the money in my envelopes?

I am trying so hard to stick to a weekly cash allowance for food, clothing, Doctors, eating out (greatly diminished w/ envelopes & cash) B.days and other occasions like showers, parties for kids, etc., haircuts, and on and on and on it seems?!

We are so tight money wise right now I keep wondering how everyone else does it?

sometimes one income (sahm to 4 at home, 2 grown) large house, car payment and gas for $2.50 a gallon do not agree with me!

My envelope for vacation is getting thicker tho <grin> a girls gotta have her priorities don't you think?

KristinU
03-29-2007, 07:14 PM
Can someone explain this a little more to me? A pm is fine- or right here on the thread. Do you estimate what you use monthly and then break that into weekly payments?

Yes, we have amonthly written budget and everything that we can use cash for we do - every dollar "has a name"...and that's where the envelopes come in. Instead of just setting aside $500 in cash and trying to keep the "names" on those dollars straight, having the $ in envelppes does that for us. If I had a big chunk of $ in my wallet it would just be gone in no time and I wouldn't know where it went or what it had been earmarked for. It just is so much more smooth and less stress*** for me.

oh bother, am I the only one with to much "week" for the money in my envelopes?

I am trying so hard to stick to a weekly cash allowance for food, clothing, Doctors, eating out (greatly diminished w/ envelopes & cash) B.days and other occasions like showers, parties for kids, etc., haircuts, and on and on and on it seems?!

We are so tight money wise right now I keep wondering how everyone else does it?

sometimes one income (sahm to 4 at home, 2 grown) large house, car payment and gas for $2.50 a gallon do not agree with me!

My envelope for vacation is getting thicker tho <grin> a girls gotta have her priorities don't you think?

Are you budgeting your amounts honestly or a little too aggressively? It sounds like you may have your dollars too low in some categories. Or is it a willpower problem? I'm kindof guessing the former...there is a difference between what I'd like to spend on, say, groceries than what I really do. I'm decent with coupons...but I'm not $100 a month good ;)

Stein
03-29-2007, 11:44 PM
oh bother, am I the only one with to much "week" for the money in my envelopes?

We actually have $2 in our envelopes and payday is in 2 hours (direct deposit at midnight). That is about $2 more than we usually have, so we are in the same boat.

If we had leftover on a regular basis, that would be a good sign we put too much in there and could move more over to debt payments.

feedindy
03-30-2007, 08:30 AM
If you are running out of cash, it is probably time to re-evaluate how much you are budgeting for each category. Our grocery budget used to be $350, but when the girls were put on a medical diet I went completely off budget. We were spending close to $700. It wasn't until we re-evaluated and set a more realistic budget that I was able to stay on track. We modified our budget and set aside $500 a month for groceries and I have stayed under it ever since. When the budget is unrealistic, you'll blow it out of the water. Our dining was the same way. We never set aside anything for dining because the ideal was to eat at home all the time. Not very realistic so we went about $200 over budget every month just on DH's lunches and random trips to McD's. Now that we have established an official budget for it, we stay under $140 so we're saving quite a bit on groceries and eating out just by setting realistic goals.

mom2grace
03-30-2007, 08:55 AM
We actually have $2 in our envelopes and payday is in 2 hours (direct deposit at midnight). That is about $2 more than we usually have, so we are in the same boat.

If we had leftover on a regular basis, that would be a good sign we put too much in there and could move more over to debt payments.

I agree, you should be out of money at payday.

We do every 2 weeks, and our envelopes are

Gas
Groceries
Blow
Toiletries
Cosmetics
Clothing (divided by child/adult)
Entertainment
Restaurants
Babysitters
Hair Care

We've been doing envelopes for 2 years in May, once we were out of debt, we were less motivated, but we are back on the wagon!

eacatwork
03-30-2007, 08:59 AM
Our envelopes include:

Groceries
Household
Chris MAD
Beth MAD
Eating Out
Entertainment
Vacation (other than Disney)
Disney
Christmas

In the past we had an envelope for Taxidermy (when Chris got his first deer...it takes about a year to do the taxidermy, so we started an envelope) and Biil & Casie's wedding (my DBro & DSIL) since we were both in the wedding and had to save for my dress, Chris' tux rental, shower and wedding presents, etc.