A few weeks ago, I wrote this post about the iPad app I bought and started using to track our budget called Budget Envelopes. Since I have had more time to use it and have completed an entire month, I thought I would tell you a little bit about how it is going.
We get paid biweekly, so my gas and groceries envelopes are set up as biweekly and every 2 weeks they get money added to them. At the end of the two weeks whatever is left over is set up to roll over into the next envelope. I had not truly tracked out expenses in a long time. I told my husband that I would be happy with any money being left over at all and I ended the month with $1.77 in groceries and $30 in gas (which we will be using more gas this month because spring soccer means more trips to town.) I discovered too that as the money started getting low in the envelope and the cupboards instead of running to the store to grab a few things, I became more creative using up what I had left.
The rest of the envelopes are set up as monthly and if there is any money left over they are set up to roll over into the next month. A month is set up as 30 days, so because I started the envelopes on Jan 25th the new month began on Feb 25th. If I wanted to, I could adjust that so it would change on the first of the month, or any other day I wanted.
I did run into a few challenges. We had a few expenses that popped up that I didn't know about that were left over from last year and a few expenses that are a one time a year things that I had to pay for. We also had higher than I expected electric and water, so I had to move some money around in order to pay for those extras. We did not spend more than what we make in a month (rather important for staying on a budget.) I am hoping that this month will be a little bit more "normal" so I can get a better idea if I need to make adjustments or not. I am very pleased that I can keep track of exactly where every penny we have spent has gone, and that I can know in a glance if I have money to spend or not.