I am just entering my second trimester and starting to think hard about our budget. Every four months we make a double mortgage payment. Our car is paid for, our only debts are student loans and our mortgage. We use a credit card regularly, we pay it off monthly as not to accumulate interest. We use the points for that to get gift cards to do holiday shopping.
We have a nine month emergency fund that will sustain us without having to cut any of our expenses in the event we both become unemployed, 18 months if one of us is unemployed without cutting anything. This is great since my maternity leave is unpaid. I plan to return to work after the baby is born. The daycare of our choice will add about $400 a month to our expenses. I just want some suggestions on our budgeting. I feel as though we are fairly frugal, we could probably do better, but it doesn't usually seem worth it. I am concerned about budget after baby comes Right now, I feel much more comfortable keeping our savings, aside from retirement, in a typical, crappy interest savings account. It is there if something happens and we need it. We've only ever taken out for surprise things like when the water heater flooded our basement.
Combined take home monthly after taxes and payroll deductions (health insurance, life insurance, retirement, etc): $2926
Prescription Copays: $150
Student loans: $300
Pet Supplies and Vet savings fund: $80
Transportation (insurance money set aside, gas, etc): $150
Netflix: $7 (i think)
Radio: $7 (i think)
That leaves a $1142 surplus. Some months we have more if our electric is lower, if refills aren't needed on all scripts, if we drive less, get good deals on groceries, etc. We're pretty tight on not going OVER on things. We've been putting between $900-$1000 monthly into savings, the rest being eating out, "mad money", recreation.
DH is slated for a promotion at the end of the month which will add about $400 monthly to take home pay.
So, suggestions for budget adjustments for when the wee one gets here? Would you recommend making a "baby savings account" for preparing for baby or just draw from general savings for stuff like car seat, cloth diapers, etc etc etc?