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Followup to my Budgeting thread..

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Alrighty, so I realized just now after going through my bank statement over the last month that I spent WAY TOO MUCH on nonessentials I am not saying the number because to be honest, I am embarrassed.

I wanted to to ask you guys how much you budget for miscellaneous things such as fast food, cornerstore stuff, lottery, clothes, cds, dinners out, movies...etc..

Once I have bills, savings, groceries/cat food and gas taken care of..how much is a good amount per week for fun stuff?

Thanks guys, you are a huge help..I feel good that I am finally getting myself in order.
post #2 of 12
not that I'm the expert on this AT ALL but I think $50 is a good number
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by katiemae1277 View Post
not that I'm the expert on this AT ALL but I think $50 is a good number
That is what I had...but obviously went over I think this seems reasonable as well..but I am obviously no expert either
post #4 of 12
I always kept $150 for lunch, travel and nonessentials a week. I also was putting $400 a pay into savings.
post #5 of 12
whatever you have after saving 10% of your pay is for that.
I wouldn't spend any money on fast food, though, better you should throw it in the street.
post #6 of 12
I end up spending a good protion of my budget on "eating out". I like 30 minutes away from the city in which I do most everything, so I either pack a lunch or eat out. I budget packing a lunch the same as eating out so I can keep track of how much my meals cost me in a week.
post #7 of 12
When we were doing the envelope thing - we would put $10-20 for the entertainment stuff. We don't go out a lot, so if its left there for a few weeks/months - it adds up
post #8 of 12
Our budget for entertainment is and has been $0 for 3 years.

We have a cash envelope that is outside our budget that we use for eating out, trips to the dollar store, and the occasional movie. We filled it up with #1, wedding cash; #2 garage sale, #3 garage sale, #4 monthly hair cuts for my mom at $10 each, and finally #5 birthday cash. We just did a count last month and still have $200 in there. Works for us.
post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trouts mom View Post
Alrighty, so I realized just now after going through my bank statement over the last month that I spent WAY TOO MUCH on nonessentials I am not saying the number because to be honest, I am embarrassed.

I wanted to to ask you guys how much you budget for miscellaneous things such as fast food, cornerstore stuff, lottery, clothes, cds, dinners out, movies...etc..

Once I have bills, savings, groceries/cat food and gas taken care of..how much is a good amount per week for fun stuff?

Thanks guys, you are a huge help..I feel good that I am finally getting myself in order.
I would break down some of those categories by what works for YOU.

For my budget, I have:
Savings - always first!
Bills, etc
Grocery: $300/mn
Personal: $40/mn (hair products, makeup, etc)
House: $25/mn (paper products, decor, cleaning products, etc)
Clothing: $100/mn
Entertainment/eat out: $125/mn (includes coffees on the go, lunch during work week, social dinners, movies etc)
miscellaneous column: $100/mn - this is for magazines, CDs, books, girly smelly bath stuff, pedicures, massage, etc.

and so on.

You may characterize things differently. I put "misc" as anything non-essential that I enjoy - you know, the "extras" in life. My parents lump "grocery" as any food/pet/toiletries/paper products/cleaning supplies as one category. I break them out - usually b/c I go to different stores than the food store for other items and pay less. It is a preference; find your preference.

If you track your spending for a month or two, the categories will "come to life" and you will know how *you* classify them.

I like the allowance idea myself, but it is up to you to determine *what* will be covered by that and what comes out of your other columns.

I like mint.com when budgeting: http://www.mint.com/
post #10 of 12
I think we usually set aside $20 for nonessential-fun spending each week. DH likes to spend time at Starbucks reading a book on the weekends. We don't spend big bucks on movie rentals--since we moved we have expanded cable and a DVR. I'm so hooked on the UHD channel. I love 80s movies. And we use Netflix. We tried a local rental place, but racked up a $6 late fine one weekend. So we're back on a strict Netflix only again.

We don't really go out to clubs or movies that much. And we like the theater with the older movies that isn't expensive for going out. But we haven't gotten to go yet.

Our budget has been all out of whack since moving, but our lease is up this spring and we're going to get a less expensive place closer to downtown. We have to drive everywhere right now, and gas & rent are killing the budget. We'd like to be closer to Mike's work and the school I'm going to. In the meantime we have to eat out less, and even the kitties took a hit in the budget.
post #11 of 12
I've been told you should save 20% of each cheque before you even start to pay your rent and other bills.

What you spend on "entertainment" is really entirely up to you and what you feel comfortable spending. Here is a link that I found that looks quite helpful in showing you how to manage your money.

http://ohioline.osu.edu/mym/index.html
post #12 of 12
I generally keep $75 from every paycheque as mad money. I take this out in cash and try to refrain from using my bank card. I find that since I started doing it this way I stop spending so much money and have started asking myself if I really need what I am planning to buy.
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