Our 2014 Budget

January 13, 2014 · 24 comments

Finally found the motivation this weekend to spend a little bit of time working on our 2014 budget. Especially after many of you called out my laziness in last weeks post and forced me to get my stuff together. Thanks for the swift kick in the pants ya jerks.

Girl Ninja and I will be repping dual income for about eight months, but come August we’ll be a one income household. Below you’ll find a screenshot of our 2014 budget coupled with our 2014 financial goals/predictions.

 

2014 budget

If you want to view the spreadsheet at normal resolution just give it a little click.

Before Tax Income:

I think it’s stupid that I have our gross income included in our budget. But for some freakin’ reason, I seem to leave it in. This year is no different. I’m reminded how much of “my” money I don’t get to keep thanks to taxes and other deductions.

You’ll notice below my gross income, I have a section titled Side Hustle. This is money I think I’ll make from blogging or other random ventures. As you can see, at $100/mo I’m not expecting anything too crazy. A few years back I sold my PF soul and brought in over $1,000 a month from this site, but nowadays I’m totally comfortable passing up sucky advertising offers.  I hate when other bloggers host “guest posts” that are clearly articles they got paid to publish.

Investments:

In last year’s budget I said I would probably cut back my 401k contributions from 10% to 5% if we bought a house. I’m happy to report that I made no such cut and don’t plan to in 2014 either. Even after Girl Ninja quits her job, I’m still planning to push forward throwing 10% in to my 401k. Retirement isn’t going to pay for itself and there’s no better time to start investing for the future than now.

Expenses:

Pretty self-explanatory. I include a 10% “random” category at the bottom of the expenses section as it seems most months have unexpected or non-budgeted things come up (household stuff, a weekend trip, birthday parties, etc). Instead of making random guesses how much we spend on cleaning products or clothes each month; we just try to keep all those miscellaneous expenses less than 10% of our net income. We also tithe/donate to charity monthly, but didn’t think it was necessary/appropriate to put those numbers in the spreadsheet.

Left Over:

This is the most important part of the budget, the green box titled Total Cash Savings Ability is how much I anticipate we will be able to add to our cash reserves on top of our retirement contributions. It’s not as much as years past, but I can’t complain if we are still able to bank a decent five-figure sum.

Goals:

In the top right of the spreadsheet you will see a section for my annual financial goals. In 2014 I’m hoping our overall Net Worth will increase to about $282,263. This would be a $47,382 increase from our current position. I’m really looking forward to being able to say I’m a quater-of-a-million-aire at some point this year. For my retirement accounts I’m estimating 6% growth over the year (2013 had like 25% growth) and a 3% appreciation on our house. Obviously, if the markets do way better (or worse) these figures will be off. All I can do is guess.

We’re going on five years of solid improvement and as long as the Big Man upstairs continues to grant us a generous income, we’ll do our best to be responsible (and generous) with it. That’s really our only goal after all.

How do you budget? You do budget right? Anything I do with mine that you think is weird? What’s your preferred budgeting tool (Mint, Quicken, Excel, Paper/pencil)?