When Life Gives You Lemons, Update Your Budget!

Week 5 | Day 27 | GB 101: Budget Bootcamp

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You’re in the home stretch! As life goes on after this course ends, you’ll probably find you’ll need to do maintenance on your budget. You might realize you’re budgeting too much in one Envelope and not enough in another.And there are other factors that might cause you to make immediate changes to your budget. For example, any change in income will warrant an immediate response in your budget. Or, you might find there are things you totally forgot to build into your budget.We asked some Goodbudget friends what kinds of things they forgot to make space for in their budgets, and Sandra said,
“Subscriptions! Amazon Prime, Netflix, Microsoft 365, local newspapers… All sorts of things for ‘just $4.99 or $9.99/month or $99/year.’ It’s death by a thousand cuts. We need to constantly review that list.”
That’s such a helpful reminder! One thing that Sandra makes clear is that our budgets will always change, and we can be proactive and minimize surprises by reviewing and making space for the new spending we take on before we’re billed.So whether you got a boost to your paycheck, or you’re taking on new expenses, knowing when to adjust your budget is important.
Today’s Assignment
  1. Review the list of circumstances that could result in you needing to adjust your budget. Things like overlooking an expense like Spotify, over budgeting in an Envelope, or taking on a new expense apply here. Do any of these sound like you?
  2. If any of those sounds like you, update your Goodbudget. First, you’ll edit your Envelopes (see how in Week 1, Day 4). Then, you can update your current Fill transaction to add money to the new Envelope, and adjust how much was filled into others (see how to do that in Week 2, Day 7).
  3. Have you already had to make adjustments in your budget since starting the course? Let us know below.
Note for couples: Any time you adjust your budget, touch base with each other so that each person knows what’s happening — and why.
Happy budgeting,-The Goodbudget Team
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1 thought on “When Life Gives You Lemons, Update Your Budget!”

  1. I have certain categories in my budget that are for estimated expenses that are important enough to me that the envelopes’ purpose is to report back how much I’m spending on that and make sure there’s enough space for them, instead of to make sure that I stay within the amount I’ve allocated to it. So I’m constantly having to adjust my budget amounts for those envelopes. My most recent example of this was for my Laundry Envelope! I realized I didn’t do my laundry as often as I thought I did, so my laundry envelope always had extra money in it, so I was able to reduce my budget amount for that. And sometimes I notice that one envelope consistently has extra money or another envelope is consistently low or red, and I have to reevaluate my priorities to decide if I want to keep it that way or change the amount. My most recent example of this was for my Growth Envelope (that I use to pay for tickets to talks and discussions, books, conferences, etc. for my own personal growth and enrichment). I kept running out of money in this Envelope, but every time I reevaluated, I realized that it was important to me to keep being able to fund the things that would promote my learning, so I kept increasing the budget.

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