Budgets, like the people who use them, come in a variety of packages. Our budget lists our basic expenses and a few different savings accounts we push money into every month (few being like 7…). As the manager of our budget, I find it much easier if I have separate accounts for each of those goals.
Here are the extra accounts we have at ING (currently at 1.1%) and Smarty Pig (currently at 2.15%):
- Emergency Fund – The cash we have set aside for job loss or anything unexpected that the other accounts won’t cover.
- Taxes and Insurance – We don’t escrow, so we put aside money every month for property taxes and homeowner’s insurance.
- Auto and Home Maintenance – Ever since we paid my car off, we’ve been paying ourselves that payment for future car and home costs. We upped that amount when we bought our house but are keeping it somewhat minimal since we’re trying to pay off my husband’s car as quickly as possible.
- Roth IRA and Stocks – We put extra money here even though we also contribute automatically to the Roth IRA. We use this extra money as an opportunity fund.
- Vacations – We save here for our big annual vacations and our smaller weekend trips.
- Hubby’s Fun Money – This is for anything he has a craving for.
- My Fun Money – This is for my hobbies and habits like Shirt Woot.
It would be totally possible to use just one account for all of these, but I like being able to take a very quick inventory without worrying if I remembered to update my Excel sheet that month. It works for us.
What works for you?
FYI: I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year. I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home. If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!). Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!