I don’t have a whole lot to say tonight, but I’ve been pretty lax about posting lately, particularly since the man usually gets here on Friday nights, which is optimal wind-down blog time.
What I wanted to write about, and solicit comments about I guess, is budgeting and re-budgeting. I generally set a budget at the beginning of the month and don’t readjust. This month I thought I might try something new, since I blew my clothing/shoes budget this month. Somanyflipflops. I also sent more to my student loans than I planned for–I’m thinking this might be my new standard amount going forward. I kept the net spending amount the same, but I adjusted some budget items down. This included adjusting down my restaurant budget (which I deliberately bumped up this month because I was taking my sister out to dinner, which ended up being lunch and therefore cheaper), so I’m hoping I can stay within that. My fast food budget isn’t over yet, solely based on the fact that I’ve been too late for my train to buy numerous pretzel. I still have my alcohol budget (boozebag), which I may use for trivia in the next week or two, or meeting an old coworker for drinks/dinner. I didn’t adjust the clothing budget for the amount I went over, solely because the overage amount hasn’t quite been established by my friends at the shoe store. But I do have $200 still left in my “everything else” budget, and I’ve been really good about not going to Wal-Mart and spending $20-$200 on whoevenknowswhat. So I might reallocate some of that money to the clothing budget.
The point? Is it acceptable to break the budget, so long as you’re still within the overall budget? I’m hoping readjusting mid-month will help to better keep track of where I am in relation to the overall goal. Am I supposed to be really strict with myself and be clear on what all of my expenses are for the month? I think I’m okay with trying this for a month or two, and seeing whether I can stick within the overall budget. We’ll see.
I’ve done mid-month inside-the-budget readjustments before and I think they’re fine as long as you don’t adjust the same budget every month…if you’re consistently spending more on one category than you should, it’s time to adjust that budget upwards permanently and find room to cut elsewhere.
I think it’s okay to break your budget parameters if you stay within your overall budget! Things pop up (like great sales!) and you can’t always plan for them. I don’t know about you, but sometimes splurging (within my means, of course) makes me super happy. Like everything, it’s okay to do in moderation. And you’re clearly aware and plan to adjust accordingly. I think it’s a great plan. And you deserve those flip flops 🙂
Absolutely, reallocate you budget mid-month. Things happen and change from day to day and it’s perfectly okay (and encouraged) to change your budget mid-month. After all, the point of the budget is to be aware of where you are spending your money and that you are spending less than your income! 🙂 Best wishes!