Slowly but surely, I am figuring out so much.

I have been working endlessly getting every single detail of my “new year, new you” in the process. Here is some of the progress I’ve made since ringing in 2018.

Fancy new budget

I have been working tirelessly on a new fancy budget for myself. It is very detailed and oriented, just like me. It’s elaborate and over the top, again, just like me. I spent approximately 10-15 hours working on this over the course of the past few weeks. I think I finally tweaked it to the point of being ‘good enough’. I’m sure, like everything in my life, I will find ways to improve it over time. For now, after 10-15 hours of working on it, I believe it’s good enough.

So, since someday I am going to… I answered the phone for Nick’s guidance counselor and now I don’t know where I was going with that.

I made a budget book. I will show you. Oh! Now I remember! Since someday I am going to start monetizing this blog and I am going to be 100% real and pure with my finances and life on this blog. I mean, honestly, I am 100% me on this blog. You see me in all happiness, tears, fits, and fury. Right now, debt is my main goal. I am going to try to be debt-free by 2020. I did the math. My debt to income ratio is half. I am almost exactly half the way in debt than what my income will be depending on what this job ends up being. I cannot think of what I will be doing in 2019 or 2020. So far, I have budgeted as far as March 2018. I know what my income will be as far as that far ahead so long as I don’t do something stupid and get fired. I found out some stuff about work. You know how I told you some of my worries a couple of entries back? Well, I got some answers! I’ll share those later. I really want to show off my budget so far.

Income Tracker

I have an annual/yearly income tracker. The entire year is on one page. Each date and day of the month is listed from January through December for 2018 on one page. I have four color-coded ways to track my income. This is what it looks like:

 

Obviously, I am going to add the income as it comes. I went ahead and put in my unemployment checks because I know I’ll be getting those from now until I start my job in Feb. I will not add anything else until it’s physically in my bank account. I colored my payday’s green because I know from Feb. until the end of April I will be paid every Friday. After April 27th, that might all change. I’ll explain more about that later.

So that’s my income tracker. On the top, I have all my income formulated to add up to tell me how much I made up to the date. I can include ALL income. Whether it’s unemployment, child support, paychecks, random little incomes I come across by doing random things on the internet like I like to, and more. The ONLY income I will track is money. I will not track gift cards or certificates. Sure, it pays for stuff, but it doesn’t physically go into my bank account or is cash in my wallet, it doesn’t get included.

Monthly Bill Payment Tracker

I have a monthly bill tracker. I have planned ahead through the end of April and figured out every bill I have to pay for each and every payday. This ensures that I am NEVER late with a payment on a single bill. This also ensures that bills are paid first and above everything else first. I have every bill that I pay written in Google Calendars. I also have every payday listed in green. I look at Friday and look at the week ahead. Whatever bill falls within that week, I add it to the date I have to pay it. So, if I have three bills due within the week before I’m paid again, I have to pay those three bills with that first paycheck.

Now, I’m going to post what this looks like but I want to explain a few things first. So, if it’s green, it means that it is paid off for that month. Once the payment has been submitted, I turn it green.

You will see I am paying certain bills twice in January. You’re probably thinking to yourself, “dude, you’re broke. You have no income. You’re unemployed, why are you paying double bills in January BEFORE you start your job.” Well, let me explain, I get an unemployment check the Tuesday after my first day of work. That will be my last unemployment check. I will work from the 5th until the 9th. That will be my first pay week. I will not be paid until the following Friday for my first paycheck which will be the 16th. That means, yes, I get paid unemployment for the first week, but there will be an entire week in there that I’m not being paid anything from anywhere. I will have a bye week. So, to rest my worry, I decided to go forth and pay most of all of February’s bills in Jan.

February is slower going than January was especially with the budget going now. Each and every cent is being accounted for. I’m paying bills as money is coming in. Literally paycheck to paycheck.

So here’s what my Monthly Bill Payment Tracker looks like:

As you can see, I am supposed to pay all five of those last bills for January on the 26th of January for February to be half covered. I’ve already paid 2/5 of those bills before the 26th so I’m ahead of the game. This entire spreadsheet is literally just saying ‘this is the minimum monthly payment I have to make’. Once I start snowballin’, these amounts will be MUCH more. In fact, once I get my taxes, two to three of those bills won’t even be on here anymore because I plan on paying off at least two to three charge cards with my taxes this year. So, ALL of that above will change by mid-February.

Snowball Debt Relief (in January so far)

I started my debt snowball relief. Well, once I start working it will start.

If you know anything about Dave Ramsey, you would know that you have to pay off your smallest debt first. You pay off the smallest first to build momentum. You get momentum because BAM the first one is paid off and man did that feel good, let’s go to the next one. You throw everything you paid towards the first one towards the second one once the first one is paid off. Which gives you the snowball effect because as you pay more stuff off and the old payments roll over to the new payments it snowballs and grows.

I wrote out my debt snowball. This does NOT include debts I already paid off. Although I have considered adding those too just so I can see how far I’ve come since July 2016 (which is when I started my debt journey, not to be confused with my debt-free journey). These are my debts. How much I owe on them. Their minimum payments. As of right now, everything is filled out as a minimum payment. As the months go by and things continue each number will change from left to right.

The first two debts will more than likely be at 0 for March as long as I have everything planned out accordingly. Whatever I paid for those (I’m not looking at it), will go towards the third plus the third’s minimum payment. At the end of the month, whatever money I have left over after bills, needs, maybe a few wants, and then sinking funds will go towards an extra payment towards that month’s third debt. It could be $20 or $200. It all depends on how well I did that month but as much as I can towards debt while still living life and having a little fun.

Quicksilver, Disney, and half of Kohl’s will be paid off with taxes should I get the amount that I’m looking forward to. So, $50 will go towards the remaining balance of Kohl’s, so I’ll be making a minimum payment of $92. Plus whatever extra I can pay towards the minimum each month to pay it off as fast as I can. Once Kohl’s is paid off I can move along to Platinum. So it will be a minimum payment towards Platinum will be $157 each month plus whatever extra I can pay. That’s how the snowball works.

January 2018 Budget Debt Spreadsheet

So, here comes the nitty-gritty. I have worked tirelessly on this next part. The top stuff, that stuff was already done and just needed adjusting. The following I worked on from the ground up, from the beginning.

Here is my budget. It has an area of income, my regular costs, my debts, my sinking funds, and then a breakdown of certain categories like household, gas, groceries, and pocket money and miscellaneous. Everything is formulated to do all the math for me. All the percentages are calculated to adjust when I enter amounts, etc.

It’s perfect for me. At least, I think it is. I’m sure over time I’ll adjust it more and more to work for me but I wanted to perfect it as much as I could in January so I can literally copy over the file each month and just delete the ‘actual’ category and start over new each month.

Now, the important part. I learned how to do this ENTIRE spreadsheet on Youtube. I watched “FreedominaBudget” four video series and learned so much about Excel that I didn’t know! It teaches you from the bottom up how to type in and manually enter and click each and every item you need to follow this budget and work with it. I HIGHLY recommend these videos. You can find the first video in the series here. Again the Youtube account is “FreedominaBudget” and she has lots of awesome videos.

So, here it is. My January budget and debt worksheet as of today, January 10th, 2018.

Ta-da. I haven’t decided if I’m keeping the blue box or not. That was something I thought I could calculate by dividing up the weeks for each expense and giving me a weekly budget for each thing but every week is different so I’m unsure if I can implement that in my budget or not. My weekly expenses for debt aren’t the same every single week. Some debt is more or less each week. I could give myself a rough estimate of a breakdown on how much I should be spending each week on consumables vs non-consumables, my miscellaneous or pocket cash, and my sinking funds but definitely not my debts. Maybe that’s how I’ll break it down. I’ll break down those items in a weekly format to give me a base of what I should be spending each week but not as a hardline of that’s ALL I can spend each week. Some weeks will be higher or lower, I just kinda want to break it down weekly because that’s what I get paid.

Anyway, that’s it. That’s my entire budget book. If you have any questions whatsoever, please, please, feel free to ask. Each picture is clickable and you’ll be able to make each picture larger so you can see the real-life numbers of my real life budget. #nofakenesshere

written on at 8:50 pm || Filed under: Budgeting, Debt Relief

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