What to include in your budget?

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Everyone’s finance is a little different. What works for me may not work for you. The list below is what I have been using for past 5 years.

I use the budget app You Need a Budget(YNAB) for budgeting. I am a fan of zero-sum budgeting in which every dollar is assigned to something. If I don’t use all budgeted amount then it gets rolled over to the next month. This rolling method works great for building a sinking fund.

CategoryItemsBudget Amount
HousingMortgage – Payment$1,323.29
HOA$86.00
Home Repair $100.00
Home Maintenance$100.00
Total – Housing$1,609.29
UtilitiesElectricity$50.00
Gas$50.00
Internet$65.00
Water/Trash$44.00
Sewage$10.00
Total-Utilities$189.00
Food/SuppliesGroceries & Supplies$275.00
Eating Out$125.00
Total – Food/Supplies$400.00
Medical & GroomingHairCut$25.00
Medical$100.00
Clothing$75.00
Total – Medical & Grooming$175.00
TransportationCar Payment$350.00
Gas$20.00
Car Maintenance$100.00
Auto Insurance$35.00
Registration$18.75
Total – Transportation$523.75
Other ExpensesGifts$50.00
Books & Training $50.00
Spend Money$100.00
Travel$300.00
Miscellaneous-Other$100.00
Total – Other Expenses$600.00
TOTAL – BUDGET$3947.04

The numbers go up or down depending on the months. For example items like Auto Insurance and Registration are only paid once every year. Home Repair item is a bucket to keep the money for major home repairs.
Spend Money is my favorite. This is the amount I can spend on whatever I want guilt-free.

Percentage by Category –

CategoryAmountPercentage
Housing$1609.2946.01%
Utilities$189.005.40%
Food/Supplies$400.0011.44%
Medical & Grooming$175.005.00%
Transportation$523.7514.98%
Other Expenses$600.0017.17%
Total$3497.04100.00%

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