Yes, emergency fund. Annual expenses that are medical we budget separately, such as eyeglasses and prescriptions. Emergency fund for us is stuff like replacing or repairing an appliance and unforeseen medical costs. We don't skimp on insurances, probably are overinsured, but it's been very helpful for fender-benders, lost luggage, dental emergencies, etc. Rather pay a small fixed amount regularly than face a "surprise" expense that would be a hardship to pay.
We are also extremely careful with clothing. We stock up when we find something that works & is a good value. I also buy the best quality we can reasonably afford. We use work clothes and aprons, and with air drying and sparing use of laundry soap we can get 15+ years out of our clothes. My husband still wears several pairs of jeans that I bought for him 20 years ago. I haven't bought any clothing for us (except underwear and socks) in at least 8 years. I'm always amazed & disappointed at the poor quality and poor value of so many clothes in stores these days, even "high end" retailers.
Can you sew? I can do some alterations and mending. I also make our fitted sheets and pillowcases from flat sheets as sometimes flat sheets are a better value than sheet sets.
You will find many little ways to avoid spending. I always consider spending to be a last resort.
Last edited by pumabearclan; 06-09-2014 at 04:50 AM.