Thursday, June 5, 2008

Intro and Budgeting

So ... let me open this up by telling you a little about myself. I am 23 and have just gotten out of college. I have a full time job, but it's hourly pay. I'm technically still an intern but I hope that by doing some really hard work and learning all I can I might be able to secure a salaried position some time in the near future. I plan on living with my parents (ugh, I know) until I have the funds that I will need to move out and get a place of my own. The area where I live is a little on the pricey side, and if you want to live in a nice area, the lowest price I've found for a one bedroom apartment is $549 and that's before you add utilities and pet rent (I have two small dogs).

I decided that since I enjoy reading other personal finance blogs I might try my hand at it and see if maybe I can do it myself. Now, I don't think that I will be able to offer much in the way of advice but support is something I can definitely lend. This blog would be more of a chronicle of my own personal savings and my journey to eliminate the small amount of debt I have racked up and create a nice savings account. Maybe I'll even venture into the world of investing! Or start a retirement account! The possibilities are endless.

Now, if I've picked up anything from my time reading about other people dealing with their money it's that the first step is to form a budget. I also know that the best way to save is to pay yourself first and live on what's left over. I think that it's also really important to set goals for yourself. So - let's jump right in.

My Savings Goal: I want to have at least $1200 in my savings account by July 31. (I currently have $150 in savings)
My Debt Goal: I want to have all of my small debts (2 under $500) paid off by July 31 and my big debt ($1600) at least halfway paid down by August 31.
My Budget:
My monthly income is about $1,560 before taxes.
I want to save at least 12% of that a month which would be about $187.20, again before taxes.
So, given these two things, that leaves me $1,372.80.

I think I can live on that very nicely ... but there need to be some allowances made for spending. I get paid twice a month so each of these allowances will be taken out in half's from each of my paychecks (which means that I can take out $50 from my first paycheck for gas and going out and $50 from my second paycheck for the total $100)
I will allow $100 to be spent on gas monthly ($1,272.80)
I will allow $100 to be spent on going out to bars and having fun with friends ($1,172.80)
I will allow $50 to be spent on clothes ($1,122.80)
And for good measure I'll throw in an extra $50 for any unexpected things that may come up over the course of the month ($1072.80)

Ok. According to this budget I should have about $1,000, give or take, just sitting in my bank account at the end of every month. That would be pretty cool, let's see if it really works. Since I've already been paid once this month, I am going to put this budget into effect starting next month. Wish me luck!

1 comment:

Taryn said...

Nice first post. I don't think I have ever read it. I'm guessing your very nice first budget didn't go so well, eh? $1,000 would be nice to save every month- that's for sure!