Tuesday, December 28, 2010

January 2011 - Budget Blues

Well it's that time of year again - that time when I do the spinnerama on the ol' budget. The really fun part is NOT knowing what my pay will be in January and when I do find out it will only change again in February. So I've been juggling numbers all day, looking back to see what the differences between my Dec./09 pay and my Jan./10 and Feb./10 pays were and trying to make an educated GUESS that won't leave me too far in the hole in case my guess is not as educated as I thought I could make it. Hoo boy!

This is what the inside of my brain looks like right now:

Anybody else remember dance class in highschool? My physed teacher was trained as a Nazi SS folk dancer - just when you thought you were going in the right direction...no NO NO you dumbkopfs...not that way...left, no right...oh I give up!

Yes, that's right...I've got the Budget Blues...

I'm standing at the crossroads
don't know which way to go
no matter which way I choose
I know I won't have enough dough...

Bills pile up to the left of me
savings wave bye-bye from the right
my money has wings and heads for the sky
man it sure is a turrible sad sight...

What should I do I ask myself
estimate high or estimate low
it really don't matter which road I take
one thing's for sure my money will GO!!

Oh I got the budget blues....

 So watch my hands veeeerrrrry carefully as I shuffle my money around and around and where it goes nobody knows....

  • I need to bump up my RSP in January and February as I missed a few payments last summer due to house purchase, lawyer fees etc etc so am reducing my emergency fund payments for two months and doubling up on my RSP payments - not happy about it but it's only for two months
  • I've decided I want to pay down my line of credit faster so am reducing my savings by $200 a month and adding that to my line of credit payment making it $1200/month instead of $1000 so my LOC will be paid off in 41 months instead of 49 - insert BIG SMILE here!
  • since I had money leftover in my grocery and gas envelopes each of the last four months I am reducing both by $50/month
  • had an increase in condo fees by $20/month which seems rather excessive but can't do anything about it
  • still waiting to hear how much my property taxes will increase by :(
  • decided to save for Christmas starting in January because I didn't have nearly enough this past Christmas so diverting $100 month into the Christmas/gifts account (and will try to cut back even more in 2011)
  • of course by increasing LOC pyt and putting $$ into a Christmas account every month means my savings account takes a big hit - instead of saving $1000/month I will be saving $650/month but I am hoping that what I put in there will STAY in there because I will have planned for my other expenses - insert CROSSED FINGERS here!
  • I have left myself $311 misc for the month of January - I am hoping that having a little extra misc $$ that I will be able to cover anything that might pop up from time to time
  • February's pay will be a bit higher and will remain the same until July when it is higher yet again due to NO union dues being taken off in the summer and then from Sept. to Dec. I have my BIG paycheques due to having paid all of my CPP by then so the point is January is my smallest paycheque then things start to look up plus there's a nice big juicy tax refund to look forward to:)
Hope your budget isn't giving you the blues, but if so let me know cause I can REALLY empathize!!


  1. Don't forget to account for the OCT payment. We usually pay ours from our mid-January cheque.
    That is interesting about not paying union dues in the summer. Our board has just moved to year round pay this school year, so I wonder if that will apply to us too?!

  2. Yes, that's why my pay for January is lower than Feb. because of the OCT fee :( As if January isn't bad enough eh?
    I love year round pay - we've had it for 15+ years - on the 15th and last day of the month:)

  3. Oh - I thought maybe that was why your pay was lower in January. Some years though we have gotten a raise February 1 (not this year!) though, so I thought that might have been the case.
    Yes I taught for 10 years getting paid on the 1st and 15th from September to June. This school year we have switched to every other Friday - including the summer. I love it!

  4. This all sounds great! You've definitely been doing some number crunching!! I think saving $650 a month is AWESOME personally!! :)

  5. I have absolutely got the budget blues, because I just can,t get my paltry little wage to do all I need doing in 2011. I want to have a fully funded emergency fund, have cleared all my debts, have money in a Holiday Fund and a long term savings fund.

    So I,m shuffling the cards rolling the dice and hoping to win the jackpot, but thats just not going to happen so it,s back to the drawing board.

    Love your little ditty, is it set to music ????

  6. Jane, it sounds like the folk dance in your head is confusing - but sensible!

    Good for you for wanting to retire your LoC faster, but still remain committed to savings too. I had struggled with this big time in the beginning of 2010, and it took me months to arrive at where you are!

    I'll be dealing with a change in how I'm paid this year too, and I have no idea what to expect. Still, I'm happy to continue to be paid, and happy to at least have the good sense to worry about the budget and make plans for the future, including Christmas 2011.

    Happy New Year to you! Can't wait to read more about how 2011 unfolds for us all.

  7. Love the Budget Blues!

    I think you are doing amazingly well. $650 a month to savings after all the other things you are accomplishing is fabulous!

    I'm not sure I want to even attempt a form of a budget. I'm more concerned with just getting through these high expense times. Thankfully 1 child will finish college *insert fingers crossed* by December 2011.

  8. Cute Song ;)

    What a pain in the butt! I know that I have my budget done for bills for the whole year --- DH's pay is pretty predictable so we don't have that problem. If anything, it tends to increase if anything (based on overtime & such)

    hope you can figure it out soon!

  9. Would you believe I really haven't done it yet??? But I feel your pain. My daughter's father bagged on her for his portion of her college tuition, so we are covering the full amount this semester. No savings this month either. But, that's okay. My daughter is worth it.

    Loved your song! I'll have to remember it each time I'm filling out my zero-based budget...:)!

  10. Maureen - the only music my song has is in my head and it sorta sounds like my dancing steps look lol!
    Sharon - that really sucks about the college tuition! That sort of thing has happened to me in the past too - I had to learn NEVER to count on DD's dad for anything - that way if he did help out it was a bonus.

  11. Sounds like you have a good, solid plan for the new year. Your savings plan seems excellent!

  12. Wow, imagine having that MUCH money to plan a budget with. Your savings amount is equal to my whole Pension income! Try and budget that! When I look at your "intense" time planning out ALL your money, my first thought is how incredible to have so much..Never in my life time..I only see blessings in what you are doing and what you have and where you've come from..I remember the old days..sorry, don't see any negatives..you are one smart lady, sister dear...love L.Dee

  13. Welcome Antie Eboo: I have seen your name around blogdom, so glad you stopped by! And another Londoner I am glad to see! I am adding you to my bloglist!

    Thanks Lannie! I remember the "old days" too when I was a single parent, going to teacher's college and living on...well not much!! I think that's why I'm so careful with my $$ now! You may not have the income that I do but you are able to work magic with what you do have:) Love you!

  14. I'd say you have everything under control!! Sounds great that you are spreading the savings... good luck in 2011!


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