Join Date: Jun 2007
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Hi - My husband and I are naturally fairly frugal people - although we do spend a fortune on organic food, shampoos, sunscreens, etc. We make "enough" money, DH has two jobs, I have one part time job, we live fairly well (but simply).
We were planning to purchase a slightly larger house in the next few years. But now, with mortgage rates so low, and housing prices down slightly in our area, we are considering buying the larger house now. I will be working more hours in a year or two, so we will be able to afford the house then - but now we will most likely have to use our savings to make up the extra costs.
Anyway, we have never had any sort of budget down on paper. I have no idea if we have any extra money left over at the end of each month or if we're taking too much from our savings already. It seems to be working out OK (probably pretty even), but I'd like to get a better idea of what money goes in and out.
We have Excel. Could we create our own budget within that or is it too basic? DH is hesitant to use online budget prgrams, because then others might have access to our financial situation.
What can we do? Thanks!
Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdad and mom to DS 24 months, and DD 8 months! .
Unless you do quite a few cash transactions, you should be able 'recreate' your financial history by looking at your bank accounts, credit card statements, check written (some banks will have scanned copies of all of these). We ended up going back a year and re-constructing to figure out our 'run rate'. It seemed like it would be crazy overwhelming, but it wasn't so bad when we got into it. It took a lot of the fear an mystery away from making a major decision. We also were sure to do a loooong time period to 'catch' one time things like vacations, medical payment etc.
Thanks for everyone's insight! It's very helpful. I did a quick list of our income (take-home pay), and then all of our expenses. We do have a couple hundred left over each month. Of course, this seems to all (that's what I need to figure out) get sucked up to buy new clothes, car repairs, birthday presents, etc.