Your Questions About How To Budget A Household Expenses

Betty asks…

What do you think of this budget/splitting expenses?

We’re moving in together, and had a conversation last night about how we will split up the household expenses. He is working on a plan, and so am I, and we will compare tonight. We both make roughly the same amount of $$.

Rent: Split down the middle
Electric: Me
Grocery: Him
Household Goods:Split
Cable/Internet: Me
Major Purchases: Discussed, then split.

The reason for the grocery thing is b/c he eats about 2x as much as I do! LOL! I thought it would be fair for me to pay the utilities if he does this.

richmama answers:

If that is what you think will work for you, then go for it!

When my boyfriend moved in with me, (I owned the house), we agreed that I would charge him “rent”. We went over the cost of what we felt everything would be and then every payday he would “pay rent”. This way, I knew the mortgage and utilities were paid on time because I paid them. We did most of our grocery shopping together and either split the bill, or traded off who paid (this time-me, next time-him). That is what we did because it worked for us.

We don’t really have a system anymore, what was mine, is still mine, and what was his became mine…(LOL… I’m kidding, we got married and now all of the money goes into and out of the same pot.

Even though it sounds like you both have a plan that you agree on, you may want to put something in writing, both of you sign it and give it to a family member for safe keeping, just in case.

Good Luck, I hope it works out for the both of you.

Maria asks…

How to save money on household expenses?

I am wondering about yahoo answers users tips for saving money on household expenses.

A few tips in these areas would be great:

-electric bills
-water bills
-childrens activities

Hubby and I both got pay cuts of about $700 total a month- OUCH! So, we really need to buckle down and get downright frugal. We own our house, and are in no danger of losing it, but we would like to not be so tight and not living paycheque to paycheque.
Any tips on how to be frugal?

ALSO any tips on how to get hubby to STOP spending so much money?! He spends $20 here, $20 there, let’s go for lunch, lets stop for a bite to eat on our trip, let’s buy this video game, let’s go on a weekend hotel stay, I want every single sattelite tv channel, etc. I am trying to get everyone to stick to a budget, but so far nobody else (kids ages 6 and 1, and hubby) is willing to stick to a budget. How do I get on a budget that everyone is excited (haha) about and will stick to?
We get married in less than a month and would like to start our new life off on the right foot.

Thanks a ton.

richmama answers:

Groceries, buy the store brands. Most of them are really pretty good and cheaper than the name brands, plus have a money back guarantee if you don’t like them. Only buy national brands when you have coupons. Buy in bulk when it saves you on the per unit price. Grow your own veggies and herbs, freeze excesses or trade over production with neighbors who grow what you don’t. Morph meals. I got this one from Robin Miller on HGTV. Use the main ingredients from one meal to make another later in the week.

Electric/water bills – only run full loads in the dishwasher and washing machine because it takes the same amount to run a full load as a partial one (more bang for your buck) Line dry as much as possible (it’s free) and use the dryer just to take wrinkles out. Turn off vampire electronics and change incandescent light bulbs to CFLs. Use motion detector night lights in the dark rather than turning on lights. Use solar powered lights for security and safety in the yard. Capture water you would otherwise let go down the drain and use it for plants.

Housecleaning-use vinegar or baking soda. I mist my shower with vinegar daily after showering to keep soap scum and mildew at bay. Both of these household items can clean most things in the kitchen and bath saving buying cleaning products.

Pets-If you aren’t squeemish and your pets need basic vaccinations, you can administer many yourself (Fosters Smith Vet catalog and online has many). If they need medications, it is much cheaper to order them online than buying them from the vet.

Paying cash is a great way to control spending. Take out the money at the beginning of the month and give everyone, including yourself an allowance. They can spend it any way they like, but when it is gone, there is no more. Same goes with eating out. Set a budget, take out the money and that is what you have to eat out with for that month.

Laura asks…

In Home Child Care Providers, daily operating expenses?

What is your monthly budget/expenses to watching kids in your home? Or do you have a supplies/food cost per kid? I have casually helped a neighbor out since Sept, and my household/grocery bill is at it’s highest. I was not keeping track, so I don’t know for sure if that is the sole reason. We’ve been going thru snacks, juices, milk, bread, crayons, coloring books, paper, playdoh, outside chalk, broken toys, paper towels, soap, toilet paper….etc. I have had a neighbor ask me to help with her 2 kids (5 and 6) for morning drop off, afternoon pick up….20-25 hrs a wk(5x). So, I’d like to figure a budget or get a general idea of what % of what I make would be going back into this–would be helpful to decide how much to charge or even if I want to do this. I won’t be adding more kids, I won’t be getting licensed. This would be short term, 1-3 yrs tops…til my youngest is in school (I have 3 kids). I know I will not be getting rich doing this, it just keeps me home a little longer.
My neighbor wants help for the new school year. And I won’t be watching the other neighbor kids. So, it would be 5 kids. 3 are mine. 3 would be in grade school. And my two youngest, one is in preschool, the other would be home.
In my state, you do not need a license if you are watching less than 6 kids (including your own). There are some thresholds, but since the other kids come from one single family, and there will nto be other kids–I do not need a license. Also, I would not be “open” all day and all hours–like a licensed daycare. I don’t want more kids, and I don’t want to be watching kids all day. I won’t be watching them on days off, or during breaks/holidays.
Justwanted2know, thx for the advice. I actually just want to know–how much $ you spend a week per kid, on these expenses…and are you licensed and get subsidies.

richmama answers:

What i do is, i watch toddlers in my home, for 100 a week per kid,(they all come from different homes) if there were siblings then it would be 150 per week for 2 kids. I don’t make the parents pay for food or art stuff (that is in the payment), i watch them from 6 am through 6 pm any time Monday through Friday,unless it is a holiday or a vacation week. I feed the kids breakfast lunch and 2 snacks. And we do art at least 2 times a week,

if you were to go to a daycare some places wouldn’t make you pay for foods i would call a daycare in your area and ask prices for they ages you said and see what the difference is. The place where you have them shouldn’t charge for every little thing

Mandy asks…

What is a suitable budget for living expenses?

In a few months my boyfriend and i are moving into our first apartment together.
I need help creating a budget for my living expenses so i can work out how much i will be spending each month. Here is the list of things we will need to pay each week/month (please work it out for two people) :

1. Food – How much on average?

2. Household bills – How much does this cost on average?

3. Council tax – How much per month on average?

If you could just tell me on average how much these things cost each week or month then i can start making some kind of budget.

richmama answers:

I think this will al depend on your where you are moving in and what your living expense really is.

For instance my husband and i moved into a new apartment in N Austin. Rent is like $645 a month. Electricity – $80 water-$20. We set aside $100 for food and gas a week and have other bills like internet and cell phones.

Altogether my job which pays $9.25 40hrs a week pays for everything. Not much left over for anything else though.

Hope that helps alittle.

Set up a spread sheet in excel to help you guys out to know what your bills would be.

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