With me back at work and Shane getting a pay raise, we decided it was time to revamp our budget a little.
We try to review it and make small adjustments every six months or so. Since we track all of our spending in Budget for Windows, it's easy to go back and see how much we have been spending in each budget category and decide whether adjustments need to be made.
This time around, our numbers were still on track. The dilemma comes into play when we try to decide where to allot the extra money*. A portion of my income will go into our current budget to loosen it up just a little. But what about the rest?
- Do we pay down/pay off our small debts (Visa and Sam's Club totaling about $2K)?
- Do we put everything we can into savings as a hedge against the second half of the year when I won't be working full-time?
- Do we pay any extra toward the principal of our van loan?
- How much can we earmark from each check for home improvements?
- How much cash out-of-pocket will we need, if any, to refinance our home when the ARM resets in July?
These are difficult decisions and we don't want to develop a case of "analysis paralysis" because we can't decide on the best route to take. So, we've decided that paying a little extra toward our small debts and socking the rest away in savings is what we'll do until we know more about both our tax return and the home re-fi. Then we can reassess and readjust.
Just curious...how would you approach things if you were in a similar situation?
*Extra money? Hahahaha. We have debt. There is no such thing as "extra" money.