THE FRUGAL FARMER BUDGET
In 2013 we committed to living on a Depression-era budget, all the while tracking expenses so that we could find out, for the first time, how much money we really spend. We’ve adjusted this page from last year’s to reflect what we spent in 2013 and what we
wish to spend plan on spending in 2014. Your budget may look different than ours, and that’s ok. A custom debt-reduction budget that fits your own family’s size, needs, etc., is crucial to debt reduction success:
Groceries: $400 a month for our family of 6
Personal items (toiletries and the like) and money for our 2 horses and other farm animals: $300 a month
Healthy and beauty: $0. No haircuts, no highlights, nothing. I’ll cut the kids’ hair and Rick’s hair (I was a licensed cosmetologist in a prior life :-)), but for me $0. I had originally planned to go and get myself some highlights after going a whole year without, as a bit of a gift to myself, but after re-analyzing our debt numbers, I just can’t do it. This may change if I get a nice windfall. 🙂 **Update: the local Great Clips here started offering haircuts on select days for $7.99. I now take advantage of this deal and get my hair cut there about once a year.
Clothing: Only when absolutely necessary
Entertainment: $60 a month for our family of six.
Home repair: Only when absolutely necessary, as in “we can’t live without heat and water”.
Cell phones: One, for me, with $100 worth of prepaid minutes for the year. We’ve had a prepaid phone for years, and I’m down to about 100 minutes left from 2013, so there’s no stock up going on here.
Car repair: Necessity expenses only.
Homeschooling expenses: Only necessities. We’ll be utilizing the library A LOT if our gas budget allows it.
Gifts: After tracking our expenses in 2013, we’ve found that we spend roughly $2400 a year on gifts, not the $1200-$1600 a year we thought we spent on gifts. This, my friends, is why tracking your expenses is SO very important. We’ll try to stay on track with 2013 gift expenses for 2014.
Those are all of the categories I can think of for now, but I’ll add more if they come up.
We will continue to give allowance to the kids (better defined as paid work in our family), but they’re not getting their customary January 1st raise. And as they usually are pretty quick to blow the spending portion of their allowance (they save 10% and give 10%), we’ve encouraged them to save their “spending” money for stuff they really want, like our annual trip to the county fair, since none of our family money can be used for entertainment. Update: we cut off allowance in June of 2013, saving our family $70 a month. We may reinstate this at some time, but if we do, it’ll be at a reduced rate.
Do you have budget ideas and tips? Feel free to share them with us by contacting us or leaving a comment on one of our posts.
FRUGAL FINANCE MANAGEMENT POSTS
5 Financial Moves for Millennials to Make Before Turning 30
Top 10 Ways to Prepare for Retirement
27 Ways to Save Money Right Now
5 Ways to Work Toward Millionaire Status
Frugal Home Hacks that Save us Hundreds Per Month
Six Health Hacks that Help us Keep Medical Costs Low
How to Live a More Rounded Life on a Budget
Republic Wireless Reivew: What We Think After One Year
Why Financial Wellness Matters
How Going to a Distance Learning College Kept Me Out of Debt
Reclaiming Your Wealth $1 at a Time
How to Prepare Financially for Your First Baby
Why You Should and How You Can Save More Money
When Frugality Was Normal
How to Feed Your Family for Less: Part 2
How to Feed Your Family for Less: Part 1
Republic Wireless Review
How I Saved Three Years Income, Quit My Job and Started a Blogging Business
A Financial Do Over: Hindsight is 20/20
The Worst Financial Advice I’ve Ever Received
Second Chance: A Must Read by Robert Kiyosaki
10 Things I Never Pay For
6 Mistakes Broke People Make
6 Lies Broke People Believe
How to Have a Frugal Superbowl Party
How We’ll Accomplish Goals We Failed At Last Year
How We Fed Our Family for $200 This Month
2014 Goals Final Update
Are You Acting in Your Own Best Interests?
May I Suggest Some 2015 Resolutions for Your Money?
Book Review: Rich as a King: How the Wisdom of Chess Can Make You a Grandmaster of Investing
What Working in a Bank Taught Me About Money
Book Review: Cream City Hustle
Book Review: Achieving Debt Freedom
Book Review: Train Your Way to Financial Fitness
Love, Money and Two Articles You Won’t Want to Miss
When It’s Pointless to Give Others Money Advice
Personal Finance Tips: You’re Not Done Learning Yet
Great Fathers Day Gift Ideas
2014 Goals Update
More Ways to Save Money on Groceries
How to Handle a Big List of One-Time Expenses on a Tight Budget
Credit Cards: Did You Know These Truths?
25 Ways to Save Money in 2014
Can You “Bootstrap” Your Way out of Poverty?
Choosing Long-Term Success over Immediate Gratification
How to Save Money on Dairy Products
Haggling for a Bargain: An Introduction
Homesteading: Why We’re Keeping our Back to Basics Lifestyle for 2014
Ideas for a Handmade / Homemade Christmas
5 Things to Absolutely Avoid Buying on Black Friday
7 Money Saving Tips to Follow During Your Vacation
An Old Farmer’s Words to Live By
Hidden Tips for Saving Money on Groceries
How to Save Money on Thanksgiving Dinner
Starting Your Marriage on the Right Financial Footing
How to Save Money on Luxuries and Splurges
Is Relocating Right for You?
Hidden Tips for Saving Money at Home: Part 2
How to Save Money: 10 Items to Always Buy Out of Season
How to Help Others When You’re on a Tight Budget
Hidden Tips for Saving Money at Home
How to Save Money: Check the Labels
How to Save Money: Buying Used Instead of New
7 Tips to Be Sure You’ll Never Pay for Shipping
Save Money on Groceries: 7 Ways to Save Money on Food
How Waiting Before You Make that Purchase Can Save You Money
3 Reasons You Should Start Investing in College
A Few Debt Relief Options You Should Know About
Business Tools to Help Your Business Run More Efficiently
How I Decided to Retire in Belize
$5 for a Card? I Love My Mom, but……
Fighting Boredom and Restlessness as You Work on Long-Term Goals
Health Cost Savings For Contact Lens Wearers
Five Easy Tips for Teaching Your Children Personal Finance
Our Story: In Honor of National Financial Literacy Awareness Month
No Fooling: The Bull on America’s Economic Recovery
Why You May Want to Delay Retirement
Back to Basics
How a Family of Six Keeps Healthcare Costs Low
Why Good Personal Finance Management and Prepping Go Hand in Hand
Meal Calendar: Feeding Your Family the Frugal Farmer Way
The Importance of Finding the Leak in Your Financial Ship
How Do You Refine Your Budget Without Falling Back Into Overspending?
Are We Headed for Another Great Depression?
Prosperity: For Better, or For Worse