Inspired in part by J. Money at the highly readable Budgets Are Sexy blog, and in part by the gajillions of dollars we've seemingly spent in the past five weeks of house buying and moving, I'm going to tackle something I've never detailed on the blog before: the household budget.
This post went through three major revisions.
Big Ass Lesson #1: Blogger doesn't have an easy way for me to do tables. And back when I first learned HTML, tables didn't exist. Then it was coding tables by hand, which I hated. So, screw tables. No tables in this post. Gonna do it old-school and ugly. Enjoy.
Big Ass Lesson #2: Don't blog about your spouse's bathroom habits. That's the comparison my partner uses to describe her aversion to sharing the actual dollar-figure details of our cashflow. Perhaps it's in part a Very Canadian aversion to doing anything that would call attention to the fact that you're doing alright in life, in case it might make others uncomfortable. Perhaps it just gives her the heeby-jeebies. So, here's a hopefully-informative but un-embarrassing look.
Big Ass Lesson #3: Revision #2, without the numbers, was still too much exposure for my lady.
So, here's a laying-bare of the budget, naked but wearing a parka:
Cashflow in: Every payday, soon-to-be-Mrs. BigAss and I put a set amount of cash into "our" chequing account. We used to figure things out proportionally by inome, but our incomes are now close enough that it's presently unnecessary to do all that math. We had a zero-balance plan set up before the house-buy, but we bumped it up by a little more than 10% as a "make things work" number. Any more and we'd be feeling the hurt in our personal moneys. Anything left over after putting in the "chunk" is ours to do with what we please. For me, I stash a bit away in savings or the company stock program, and fritter away the rest on dumb stuff like cigarettes and cinnamon buns. And transit passes and taxi fare and flowers and such more-important things. It's not a lot, but it adds up if I'm smart (which one would hope that I am, by now).
Cashflow out: We have expenses. They are accounted for. That's all you're getting. I will say that the mortgage is the biggest piece, with savings, electricity, car lease and groceries also being major players.
Question to the audience: I'll grant that I've long had issues with boundaries on sharing my personal information, often leaning too far on the wide-open side. I'm more likely than most to tell people things about myself that others would be uncomfortable sharing. Gosh, I wonder where I learned that. Anyway, talking about money is clearly something a lot of people feel is taboo. Sure, there are plenty of blogs around where writers go into excruciating (and educational) detail about their budgets ... but to be fair, all the ones I can think of are run by unseen people under pseudonyms. Me, I'm out here as me. And as my 'manda reminds me, this is not a PF blog -- this isn't Big Ass Super Finances. It's mostly read by friends, family, acquaintances and assorted weirdos looking for dozens of varieties of "big ass".
So, what do you think? Is a "critique my budget" post only appropriate for people who don't tell you who they are, where they work, etc.? Does the fact that I'm full-out telling you who I am make it creepy and weird to explain our money strategy? Thoughts?
Today marks a weird spot on the calendar for me. It’s one of those landmarks that really doesn’t mean anything, other than to illustrate the...
Wow, long time no write. I didn't enjoy this past winter. I was certainly in a long slump. Things were very challenging at work. Gordo...
One year ago today, we lost Amanda. Time plays tricks on all of us. We can think "that was so long ago" at the same time as &quo...
It's been two and a half months since the last update on this blog, and I was hoping to write one soon with lots of good news. I was...