Your Questions About Household Budgets That Work

Laura asks…

Anyone know a good book or ideas on budgeting your household checkbook?

I made over 100k last year and my wife blew threw it as quick as I made it…I worked over 500 hrs overtime! I need a budget that is practical. Does anyone know of a good book or ideas?

richmama answers:

To start a budget…it is very important to write down where the money is being spent so you can identify where you can cut down and save.

You can do this on a monthly basis or whatever suits your situation, list down your expenses as

fixed payments like rents or motgage payments, car loan payments, student loan payments.etc. These are expenses that you need to pay and which are fixed amounts

expenses that you can control like groceries, utilities, petrol , other basic necessities

The above expenses are the ones which you can’t avoid, though they are controlable.

Deduct the expenses from your income and you will see whether you have excess cash or you have a deficit.

If you have excess cash from the process above, you can start planning on what to do with the excess, it is a good idea to put away some as savings….but don’t forget to have fun too if you can afford it. You can’t just work and not have fun!

Use a credit card only for convenience, meaning charge your expenses but pay all the balance at the end of the month to avoid paying interests which are extremely high. If you can’t pay your credit card balance, it means that you spent beyond your means. The credit card statement serves as a list of your expenses which can help you keep track of your spending. It is very easy to forget how $100 in your pocket was spent, so make sure you write down everything. Quite hard at the beginning but very helpful!

Good luck…I am sure that when you do this, you will have a better understanding of where your money is going.

Robert asks…

Could you run a household budget this way, and not bankrupt yourself?

A Household‘s budget is based upon 40-per-week of income from the employed. The Employed decide that they wish to work fewer hours, but insist that since working less (taking in less revenue) doesn’t cost anything (other than lost income), that they can continue to live on a budget based on a 40-hour work week, but only if they did not add anything to their budget (no new spending).

Would this plan work in your house? Why do “conservatives” continue to believe that revenues (income) can be cut without corresponding cuts in the budget?

Do not bother answering with a question. It’s a waste of everyone’s time, including your own. Snide comments that do not answer the question are best left untyped, as well.

If “trickle-down” is being cited, please support with data what is being asserted. 30+ years of hard data, and real life experience, prove trickle-down an abject failure at doing what we were told that it would do.

richmama answers:

No You couldnt..

Fact of the matter is, we DONT believe “Why do “conservatives” continue to believe that revenues (income) can be cut without corresponding cuts in the budget?”…….quite the opposite

In the 1980’s we TRIPLED revenues to the Feds by cutting taxes, and the Dems spent every penny of it and then some. It was only after we dug our heels in 1995, was change made. Tax rates WERE higher, but still not at the record levels they were back 40 years ago.. One could say that REP’s proved that holding the line on budget spending was the cause of our record surpluses in the late 1990’s, and only after Congress decided to go on future spending binges, did we get back in trouble.

People dont seem to understand the concept that government should NOT run continual surpluses. If they are in surplus for more than a couple of years, then they are taking too much in taxes, and that tax should be given back to those that paid it..

Please dont try to rewrite history… It is all there in black and white…

Helen asks…

I have $ 2,500 to invest in cd’s. Where to invest?

I have been doing lots of work on my household budget, projecting income and expenses for the next 3 to 5 years. I am totally debt free including house, and have a big emergency fund, and have an ample amount of money in mutual funds and retirement funds.
I still have a minimum of $ 2,500 that I want to put into CD’s, probably a 1 year Cd. Where do I find the absolutely higher interest that I can put this money ? Search internet sites for best rate? Take whatever my local bank is offering on cd’s ?

richmama answers:

My stock broker is offering one 1 year cd that pays 5.2% as the highest offering. Most are quoted at 5%. 6 mo t-bills pay 5% currently. That will give you a benchmark to shoot for.

Mary asks…

Why do people on both sides believe economic myths?

Conservatives think cutting the deficit in a recession is a good idea (disaster, one of the things that started the Great Depression and made it come back in 1936). And they think that the stimulus hasn’t worked (wrong, latest estimate from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office is that it saved 2.5 million jobs).

Liberals think that ending wars is good idea for the economy (wrong, war is an economic stimulus, WW II forex ended the Great Depression)

Why can’t people learn a little bit about Keynes and monetarism and realize that the economy doesn’t work like a household budget? All it really takes is a few hours of reading and thought to realize that most people have things backwards.

richmama answers:

I don’t care about the economy when it comes to ending war, I care about human life.

I agree that war can be good for an economy, but North Americans can manufacturing more than destruction.

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Your Questions About How To Budget A Household Expenses

James asks…

Why does the general public believe that “Walmart is big enough. They can afford it?”?

Has anyone stopped to think that running a world-wide business such as Walmart is no different than running a household budget? There’s rent/housing expenses, electricity, heat/cooling, phone bills, just to start; not to mention paying the employees, paying security because there’s just way to many lazy, greedy people, supplies needed to keep the business running as smoothly and efficiently as possible, and all the hidden bills that a business like Walmart has to endure. Multiply all this times how many Walmarts are in the world.

richmama answers:

Recent studies have ranked Wal-Mart in the top 6 largest economies in the world. They are actually comparing Wal-Mart to the economic state of countries. The business plan and execution that Wal-Mart has is ingenious so much so that it is like a virus that is spreading (first across the US) now all over the world. It is responsible for putting small mom and pop business out of business all over the country not to mention their questionable practices with their employees. The success of a company can have negative effects when it becomes a form of monopoly. There have been many studies that show its negative influence to the economic well fare of the people around it. If you are very interested in this pick up a best seller in 2004 called “the world is flat” and read the section it has on Wal-Mart. I have to give it to the Walton’s though if you combine their shared wealth they are well above bill gate’s empire.

Hope that helps RA

David asks…

WORKING WOMEN & OUR ECONOMY! I’M NOT SEXIST I SWEAR!?

I’m working on a serious research discussion/report about the female workforce and how it may relate to the current situation in our economy. I’ve gotten a huge amount of feedback about this question. And it’s not sexist, though it may seem that way.

I’m looking for some personal opinions and facts about the last 6-7 decades and the economic changes that happened when women began working. Example: Lower wages, fewer jobs, issues with how children are raised and developing, household expenses and budgets, etc….

Let me know how you view this please…

Let me get this straight… i’m not saying women should not have the right to work or be equal, It is only my opinion that women are a vital part of the development of the average household, our children, our health, our well being, etc. Please don’t take this as sexist, understand the changes that took place and why…

richmama answers:

As a mother i understand what you are saying and your right it has changed. (Not everything appies to every person). I am a stay at home mom because i choose to be. I wont my children to have that stable figure who is there when they need them and has the time to play w/ them. I dont want to be busy w/ work all the time. I do think that over time it has changed things. Children are less looked after, and are exposed to things they shouldnt be at younger ages and growing up faster. Expenses wise i think that familys become use to relying on a 2 income family and do not prepare for job losses so they cannot handle the changes when it happens and become finacially in trouble. I honestly wish women just cared more about there children like they use to I am a young mother and I have already seen to many children being neglected or unsupervised at very young ages due to parents just not caring anymore.

Lisa asks…

WHAT DID THE WOMEN’S MOVEMENT DO TO OUR ECONOMY?

I’m working on a serious research discussion/report about the female workforce and how it may relate to the current situation in our economy. I’ve gotten a huge amount of feedback about this question. And it’s not sexist, though it may seem that way.

I’m looking for some personal opinions and facts about the last 6-7 decades and the economic changes that happened when women began working. Example: Lower wages, fewer jobs, issues with how children are raised and developing, household expenses and budgets, etc….

Let me know how you view this please…

Let me get this straight… i’m not saying women should not have the right to work or be equal, It is only my opinion that women are a vital part of the development of the average household, our children, our health, our well being, etc. Please don’t take this as sexist, understand the changes that took place and why…

richmama answers:

Well, I think the women’s movement allowed families (households) to raise their standard of living. Two incomes = more money.

I think it allowed families to purchase better cars, better food, more purchases, period

I think that because our standard of living as increased, it might have attributed to our current economic crisis. People began to live outside of their means, because it was a lifestyle they had become accustomed to.

I don’t know how many people plan to live in households where the men are currently the sole breadwinners. It seems too difficult now to go backwards in time and live on just one salary.

Women (if they aren’t raising children) are expected to go to work part-time.

Michael asks…

Should MOTHERS STAY HOME WITH THEIR CHILDREN?

I’m working on a serious research discussion/report about the female workforce and how it may relate to the current situation in our economy. I’ve gotten a huge amount of feedback about this question. And it’s not sexist, though it may seem that way.

I’m looking for some personal opinions and facts about the last 6-7 decades and the economic changes that happened when women began working. Example: Lower wages, fewer jobs, issues with how children are raised and developing, household expenses and budgets, etc….

Let me know how you view this please…

Let me get this straight… i’m not saying women should not have the right to work or be equal, It is only my opinion that women are a vital part of the development of the average household, our children, our health, our well being, etc. Please don’t take this as sexist, understand the changes that took place and why…

Would’nt it make sense to give stay at home mothers a HUGE tax credit for doing so? If more women stayed home and raised their kids, there would be more jobs and better pay, a tax credit, better kids because their parents are raising them, etc.

richmama answers:

I began having babies at the onset of the feminist movement. I have seen the way it was in the 50s, and I see the way it is now. As a well educated female, and mother of three adult females, I have a vested interest in this issue. I have always worked, both as a Registered Nurse and a college Professor, and also became a licensed realtor and earned a total of 4 degrees along the way. I managed to do all of that while being the principle caregiver to my children, since I did everything part time, and juggled shifts and schedules with my husband of more years than I admit to. The reason my children were raised by their parents was not an accident. Monumental committment, sacrifice, and intelligent decision making goes into something like this. I could have achieved higher status in the work force had I been willing to take the positions that were offered to me. I refused, and maintained my part time status because I believe that when you have children, you raise them. When it comes to priorities, and one is worried about being fired from a job versus taking care of their sick child, all too often the sick child is dumped at the daycare, and the job wins. If you haven’t prepared yourself educationally to be able to earn decent money working in the part time venue, and established a committed relationship with an equally intelligent committed partner capable of functioning as the principle income earner, then don’t have children. As a woman, I am the one that became pregnant, and I am the one that lactated. As a feminist, I understand completely my right to choose not to have children if I prefer a career. But as I see it, this is an either or situation. Full time career climbing and motherhood do not mix. I am disgusted by the sorry ass excuses for parenting that have emerged over the last three decades

ADD….being able to stay home with your children has absolutely nothing to do with luck. You make your own luck.

ADD….I would want to personally interview anyone asking for my dime to stay home and raise a child, especially if the government has anything to do with administering the funds. Before they’d get my hard earned money, I would know the reason why. Having children should not be looked at as a right…..it should be looked at as a privilege, to be earned. Aren’t there already enough uneducated, unmarried mothers of multiple children with multiple deadbeat dads already receiving welfare paid for by taxes that come out of my pocket, when I actually planned my family and worked to pay for what I chose?

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Your Questions About Household Budgets

Steven asks…

What is Cap and Trade and how will it affect our household budgets?

I doubt anyone knows of this impending expense.
I’m surprised this made it through.

richmama answers:

It should be called what it is-an energy tax, which will make everyone’s taxes go up thousands each year-especially the working class, which 0bama promised would see no new taxes.

Charles asks…

Do you believe in times of extreme recession the gov’t should run it’s budgets like a household budget and?

halt spending?

Or do you think that the gov’t needs to spend in order to keep the money flowing(i.e. it takes money to make money)just as companies invest in R&D during tough times?

richmama answers:

Even in extreme situations, household spending can’t be brought to a halt. There are always things like food, shelter, utilities, gas and car insurance that still need to be paid. The government isn’t a home and people who believe it can be run the same way are simplistic in their views.

Linda asks…

household budgets… What;s the best on-line help to organize your money??

richmama answers:

Friend my suggestion try it.
Visit: http://www.makemoremoneyinhome.blogspot.com
log on http://www.onlineno1marketingsales.blogspot.com
http://www.freeonlinesharetips.blogspot.com

Paul asks…

Household budgets – funny or not?

Seamus on looking at the household budget complained to his wife on her spending.
“If you cleaned the house yourself that would save on the cleaning lady” he exclaimed.
“You should also learn to cook and that would save on having to go to restaurants all the time.”
“And while we’re at it, you should learn to iron so that we wouldn’t have to pay the ironing lady”
After pondering on his comments for a few moments the wife replied “And if you would learn to f uck, then we could get rid of the gardener.”

richmama answers:

Ha! Ha! What a shock for the husband….

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How to Budget – Single Moms Can Make it Work

How to Budget-Budget tips for Single Moms

Single Mom BudgetOne of the most important concerns for a lot of single moms out there is how to budget. Numerous single moms go through a situation of trying to manage a tight budget just to provide continuously for their kids. This can be extremely hard for them, especially when they are facing and doing this on their own, with no partner to help and support them. Learning how to budget can make financial struggles feel like less of a burden.

However, having a good budget is crucial especially when you can almost guarantee some emergencies to happen to you and your family. Learning how to budget can help a single mom learn how they can manage their money better without all the stress and pressure. These tips will help all single moms to establish a household budget:

Learn How to Budget for Your Family

•    Firstly, determine how much money you are getting every month. This is critical when learning how to budget.  Make sure that you include all sources of income that are promptly available to you like pay checks, social security, child support and even dividends on bonds and stocks. Anything that you are sure of coming to you should be part of the budget.

•    Next tip is to list all the expenses by starting with the most vital ones such as rent, car payment, insurance, as well as utilities. You may also include in the top list the groceries and then that is the time you begin with the other expenses like credit cards, incidentals and medical expenses.

•    Carefully look at how much money are coming in versus the money that is going out. Your priority should be the bills because these are the ones that keep you sheltered and keeps food always present on the table. Pay all of those bills out of what you have kept in your budget and take a look of what’s left. This is a key strategy of learning how to budget.

•    Determine the number of non-important bills that you can pay, and pay as many as you can. However, you must rank them in order of priority first, and after that, you can start paying them. If it is hard for you to pay the full amount, or if you need to make some payment arrangements, you can always try to negotiate with the person or office you owe and explain everything.

•    Lastly, take a look at the money that was left. Always keep in mind that unexpected emergencies will always happen, so you do not have to wait for the next pay day because you have extra money for any emergency situation that might occur.

Learn How to Budget – Spend Smart

When learning how to budget make an effort to squeeze in your budget every month until you know it by heart. Maintain trimming off costs here and there, and the money that you will be saving should be directly into your savings fund. Having a budget can help you keep track of where all your money is going, as well as get hold of steps to ensure that all of the money is going to the right places for your kids. How to budget for single moms is extremely important, so it is crucial that you pay attention with your budget. Learning how to budget will help you feel in control of your finances.

Your Questions About How To Budget A Household

John asks…

HOW TO BUDGET HOUSEHOLD?

As a new wife and mother i would like to know exactly STEP BY STEP
how TO RUN A SUCCESSFUL HOUSEHOLD (FINANCES) .

richmama answers:

Congrats on the great new changes in your life! I too am newly married although haven’t ventured yet into motherhood yet! We recently went on a budget to save for a down payment on our first home. This is what I did…
I figured out how much we have coming in for income each month (net not gross). Then I looked at my last 3-6 months bills and grocery receipts to get an estimate of how we have been spending. Then I started a spreadsheet. Filled in What we earned the took out things that we can’t control like rent, insurances, phone, cable etc. That way I had an understanding of what we have left realistically after our “fixed” expenses. From that I then considered what our non-fixed expenses such as entertainment, groceries, clothing, gifts and such and set a budget of what we can spend in each category. One website I have found to be very helpful to see where we are at is mint.com… Its great cause you can see at a glance where you have gone over and where you still have to spend!

Donna asks…

How do high schools teach students about making a household budget?

Is there a requirement for high school seniors to learn how to do some financial planning? Would it help cut down on the number of bankrupcies?

richmama answers:

We didn’t have such ‘education’, when I was in school (’60’s),
and yes,
I feel that schools today should have mandatory classes in basic budget financing, credit card use, investment options. . .

Of course, if most people knew these basics. . . ???

The ‘rich’ would find it more difficult to prey on the ignorance of the ‘lower classes’ . . . And that just would not ‘do’ — in our democratic, capitalistic, consumer driven, society.!!!

Paul asks…

How a household budget surplus could provide opportunities to grow wealth?

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richmama answers:

Take the surplus and pay off debt, save it, or invest it!
Don’t blow it!

Ruth asks…

Any advice or websites to establish a functional household budget?

I am 32 and clueless about budgeting. I feel like I make enough money to pay what I need to, but I always just break even. I do NOT indulge in luxuries. I want to be organized with my spending, but I dont know how to start. Do you know of any websites or other resources that are quick and to the point that might help me? Thank you!!!

richmama answers:

Check out expenseRegister.com. It is a free website and you can set up your budget, record and track expenses. It has some neat tools to create reports etc. It is free!

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