I’ve talked about in previous posts about the relationship between frugal living and passive income, cooking at home to save money and frugal hobbies. But, today is the dreaded “B” word which=budget. While I love the idea of a budget, as a general theory and believe it can be very important when trying to live a frugal lifestyle (as does Dave Ramsey), I don’t do it. This probably seems quite strange for those who know me in real life! “Why is this?” you might ask. Here are a few of my reasons:
1. I’m totally out of debt, have a decent amount of money invested and have a $10 000 emergency fund almost fully funded (will be done in 2 months or so). The emergency fund could cover about 6 months living expenses. So, I’m certainly not at crisis state when it come to finances. For those who are getting out of debt, or have no money saved for retirement, I certainly recommend getting on a written budget. It’s crisis-mode time.
2. I earn about $300-500 every month in passive income. This gives me a bit of a buffer and I generally save it up and spend it on plane tickets and hotels when traveling, as well as all food and supplies for my two sweet cats, Sarah and Lucy. Without that passive income, things would definitely be tighter and I’d be paying much more close attention to where the money from my day-job was going.
3. “Budget” is my state of mind. Like I’m always thinking about how I can do things in the cheapest way. For example, I challenge myself to have at least 3 no-spending days/week. It means that literally no money leaves my wallet. And if given the choice between enjoying a home-cooked dinner at home with a friend and watching a downloaded TV show, or going out for coffee and dinner and night at the bar, I will ALWAYS choose the former.
And, I loathe shopping. Like really, really hate it and I quite literally only go shopping for clothes twice a year (at most). I go in fall to get a new sweater and pair of pants for fall, and then I go in spring to get a couple tank-tops and maybe a pair of shorts for summer. My friends actually joke that they see me wearing the same two t-shirts and hoodies every time they see me. It’s not because they’re necessarily my favorites, I just really don’t have that many clothes.
So the budget? I think I’m one of those freakishly odd people who just like saving. It gives me joy, and while I will spend money to go out once in a while or take a vacation, I’m pretty happy just living small-scale, frugally. I know that things will not bring me joy and if I’m feeling sad, or lonely or upset, I’ll go home for a cuddle and a cup of coffee with my cats or go for a bike-ride or I’ll chat with a friend online instead of going out to spend money. But, if you do want to get on a budget, you definitely can’t go wrong using Dave Ramsey’s System