Budgets come in all sorts of variants and permutations, but the best type of budget is the one that actually works for you.
The strictest budget that I know of is the zero-sum budget. With it, you have to “spend” every cent you make or to be more precise, you give every cent you make a job to do since money that isn’t allotted will only be spent mindlessly. My preferred budget though is the anti-budget by Paula Pant of Afford Anything where you save/invest a pre-determined percent of your income per month. It pretty much goes like this: take out money, save/invest accordingly, and spend the remainder of your monthly income as you please. Easy peasy.
Unfortunately, it will take me a while before I can use the anti-budget since I still have consumer and mortgage debts to deal with, necessitating that I micro-manage my money until I can completely wipe out my debt.
I used to make regular net worth updates and then post them here on my blog. I still regularly track my net worth, although I just don’t post them here anymore because, honestly, I’m disappointed with myself and my failure to dramatically increase my net worth.
But since this is a personal finance blog after all and I would like to be held accountable for my actions, instead of my net worth, I am going to publish how much debt I’m in and then track that. I have a feeling I’m going to regret this airing of dirty laundry, but what the heck, I never claimed to be a personal finance rockstar. So here we go:
I was in Quezon City for a meeting yesterday and my husband went with me since he also had some business to attend to in the area. My meeting ended at about 3pm, but with the almost 3 hour travel time that we endured just to get to Quezon City from Paranaque, I thought twice about going back to my office in Pasay, because what would most probably happen is that I would arrive with an hour to spare before the office closed. I knew that there was nothing important pending in the office that couldn’t wait until next week, but we were scheduled to receive our salary and a bonus yesterday and I have to pay a credit card bill tomorrow. However, when I checked my active account, I realized that I had just about enough to pay off my credit card bill and even if I didn’t, I could tap into my emergency funds and then simply replenish those accounts next week when I receive my money. And so we didn’t go back to Pasay, instead we spent quality time at the grocery (parents can relate to this I’m sure) and went home early to our son.
A few days ago, I asked for the reversal of my credit card’s annual fee of Php2,250. Yesterday, I received a text message saying that my request for reversal was not approved but that they hoped I would still continue using the credit card so that I can qualify for waiver next year.