<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Home > Survived the holiday - Next!

Survived the holiday - Next!

December 28th, 2018 at 02:01 pm

New user error! I had a great entry written and now it is lost. Frown

The blog was about the cost of Christmas. Adding up receipts and guesstimating for expenditures not recorded, we spent about $900 on Christmas. This does not include the big ticket family gift of a cruise in July 2019. I think $900 sounds modest for a family of four. We spent about $600 on our kids gifts, small gifts from kids to my husband and I and food and decorations. We had a simple meal, using freezer and pantry item and only purchased a roast from the grocery store.

Now I am faced with the kids home from school until January 7th. I am sure we will see a movie or two and attend a hockey game or two. I will try to keep costs down.

While adding up the cost of Christmas, I realize that this amount was "cash flowed" from extra December income sources (extra in the paycheck from no social security deduction and an extra paycheck). I have been watching budgeting videos on Youtube. I am curious about sinking funds. I don't do sinking funds per say but move any extra $ in the checking account to savings.

I have tried YNAB and EveryDollar (ED) previously but could never quite figure out how to start. We live on last month's income (meaning that I have already set up to pay January bills and we still have money left over) but I can't figure out how to start YNAB and ED. Do I start with $0 and allocate the next paycheck received?

Any advice on YNAB or ED and sinking funds would be appreciated....

6 Responses to “Survived the holiday - Next!”

  1. crazyliblady Says:

    Welcome to SA. It's great to meet you. That's not a new user error, unfortunately. The website is just weird and has technical problems. So, to cope, I type up my entries, the few that I make, in Notepad or Word. Then, I copy and paste them into SA. It makes for much less frustration.

  2. crazyliblady Says:

    I also have sinking funds for different kinds of expenses (car replacement, house maintenance, professional expenses, appliances, medical, tax prep, and aaa/property taxes. For everything except car replacement and appliances, I figure out a guesstimate on how much per year I can expect to spend and I budget a little more than that. For appliances and car replacement, it is different. I am not saving for a specific dollar amount for appliances, as I have nothing specific to buy right now. I am just saving up for replacing any appliance that breaks down. I am also savings to buy a different car. The sinking funds and amounts you have may completely differ, as you have a large family, but I would suggest you have sinking funds for Christmas and birthdays. Welcome and good luck.

  3. crazyliblady Says:

    One other thing I forgot to mention. I have each sinking fund in a separate savings account. I have heard others advocate for putting it all in the same one. I used to do that, but I would forget that $XXX amount is for a car and $XXX is for something else and so it was difficult to keep track of.

  4. crazyliblady Says:

    Here is a video about using the Every Dollar. I have never used it myself. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3KY7riF1lPY

  5. creditcardfree Says:

    Yes, important to at least make a quick copy of your post before you submit. Sometimes if you hit the back button, it will show up again.

    Cash flowing Christmas is impressive! We could probably do that, but I simply save $50 a month towards Christmas. We were under budget this year!!

    I'm not sure how I started with YNAB. We don't technically live one paycheck/month ahead. So when we started we had a paycheck of half a month. I simply allocated all those funds into categories, some were zero because they would be filled with the second paycheck of the month. The sinking funds end up creating a cushion of sorts in our checking account, so if we do go over we aren't technically in the red in our account. YNAB should have lots of videos on their site explaining how they suggest doing it.

    When you enter a deposit or balance into your checking account on YNAB you get to decide which month the money is for. We are about to have a paycheck on Dec 31, this is January income for us, but in your case, since you already have funds for January spending, your next paycheck could be allocated for February. When you set it up you can tell YNAB which month the current funds you have on hand are for, which in your case would be January. Then you start allocating those funds in the January column. As you spend in January, the funds are taken from those categories. I use an older version of YNAB, but I'm assuming this is still the basic idea of the newer versions. Budgeting is budgeting!

    If you go to my blog and search 'sinking' you will find a few posts I did about sinking funds.

  6. rob62521 Says:

    Every year we put money in a Christmas Club account and that helps us cash flow our expenses. Although there are only two of us, I use some of that money for gifts for others as well as tips for our hair stylists and things like that.

Leave a Reply

(Note: If you were logged in, we could automatically fill in these fields for you.)
Will not be published.

* Please spell out the number 4.  [ Why? ]

vB Code: You can use these tags: [b] [i] [u] [url] [email]