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So what is the Ideal Budget?

February 16th, 2009 at 04:20 pm

Does it look like this, the top Google hit?


In lieu of anything else, it looks pretty close to me. I'd like to post my actual numbers next to it for a critique from you people, hopefully I'll have that ready in a few days. What I do know is mine is far from that! Oh, housing is dead on, but debt service is a TAD higher. Arghh.

So the numbers in descending order are :
Housing 30%
Transportation 14%
Food 12%
Entertainment/Recreation 7%
Clothing 6%
Misc. 6%
Debt 5%
Savings 5%
Investments 5%
Insurance 5%
Medical/Dental 5%
Total 100%

Some difficulties with quicken online are slowing me down, but luckily I found the help forums, and a fix for the problem I am having is due in February. In the meantime I'll probably just resort to Excel.

4 Responses to “So what is the Ideal Budget?”

  1. Chalatenango Says:

    I feel like we can all think of a million ways of how to spend $100.00, but not many of us know how we can take $100.00 and convert it to a million dollars.

    Being on budget at least helps ensure that money is allocated & spent properly.
    One especially important part of your budget is ensuring that savings is also included. Many of us fail to save. I too am struggling to save any money, but eventually I will build my savings up.
    At the moment my efforts are all on getting out of debt.

    Good luck to you.

  2. NJDebbie Says:

    Ralph, I must confess that I do not have a budget (written one that is). I should, but I don't. I do however, put savings religiously away from every paycheck. I realize that I am also lucky; we have a good income and a rental house that we managed to pay in full and generates income for us. There are 4 times in the year we fall short (when NJ property taxes are due Feb. May, August and Nov). If I were to have a budget, perhaps I wouldn't be robbing Peter to pay Paul durin those months.

    Your doing a great job trying to get yourself out of debt. Don't give up, stick to your guns at home. I have my fingers crossed for you.

  3. Ralph Says:

    Hey, if you are banking money, a budget isn't as necessary! It's when you fall behind that it is sort of critical. For years I did it in my head but you can see where that got me! I knew I was in trouble when I had to notch back savings to pay old debt. Luckily (I suppose), my company has a pretty minimal requirement to get the company match.

    Property taxes are a great illustration of how budgeting makes sense. Thank goodness I have the forced budgeting of escrow. Forced automatic monthly payment of a top priority expense makes sense. For the same reason I LOVE that my mortgage is on autopay. I worried a lot when it was up to me to pay quarterly taxes and insurance and monthly mortgage. Now it's a no-brainer.

    Thanks, NJDebbie, but I feel like it's all smoke and no fire right now. Or like birthing an elephant - very noisy and takes a long time. But it's a necessary first step and sort of fun too.

  4. Amber Says:

    I don't have a budget per se however I do sock away savings and contribute to an IRA account

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