I’ve alluded to my new budget a few times, so I think its finally time to write a full-fledged post about it.

4 Paycheck budget  $3,395.80
  Rent  $1,150.00
  Insurance  $     33.33
  Electric/Water  $   100.00
  Internet  $     50.00
  Phone (Cell & Landline?)  $     50.00
  Grocery  $   200.00
  Car Loan  $   260.00
  Car Surplus (used towards insurance)  $     21.67
  Insurance (minus car surplus)  $     95.00
  Registration  $      6.93
  Gas  $   200.00
  Student Loans  $   167.25
  Roth IRA  $   400.00
  Dad  $   300.00
  Long Term  $          –  
  Toiletries/Personal Care  $     20.00
  Household (cleaning, etc.)  $     25.00
  Dance  $   130.00
  Clothing  $     40.00
  Entertainment (Dining, Movies, shows, etc)  $   100.00
  Grooming/Cosmetics (Haircuts)  $      8.33
  Misc. Savings  $     38.29
  Totals  $3,395.80

This is my budget calculated based on 4 paychecks a month. Did you notice anything odd?

There’s no savings in there other than my Roth IRA (401k is calculated pre-tax, therefore not included).

Before you scold me though, in the original budget I had close to $300 a month going to savings….only $38.29 survived once I converted to the 4-week budget. So my plan is for those months with 5 paychecks, that whole paycheck will go solely to savings! At that point I’d distribute it accordingly. In the beginning most will go towards repaying my emergency savings, and some will go to donations, travel, gifts, and “Long-term” savings.

Some other things to point out, I’m not sure how much renter’s insurance will be, so I have estimated $400 a year, but I’m not even sure I’m getting a policy at the moment. I haven’t chosen an internet service yet either, so that may go down a little. The line that says “Car Surplus (used towards insurance)” would appear to not make sense. This is actually just a place holder for the money that is direct deposited in my “car account” that is extra after my car payment is taken into account. I’d get it adjusted, but I don’t feel like submitting the paperwork, therefore I have to implement goofy placeholders in my budget.

For tracking I’m going to continue using my handy register that I keep in my wallet. It makes it easy to write down whenever I spend on something. Electronically I’ll be using PearBudget, although we’ll see how that works out for me.

So that’s my budget at a glance. Its going to be tight for me in the beginning. Entertainment is supposed to include eating out. I used to get an allowance for $63 a week, and now its basically $25 a week. Fortunately I have a grocery line item to make up for that. Now I just need to get cooking! To put it simply, I’m going to have to get used to controlling myself and limiting my frivolous spending. I’m sure it sounds easier than it is.  We’ll see after this first month where I can make any additional adjustments.