Learning to manage money on one income

Since becoming a one income family in early spring we have been watching money very tightly.  We were very fortunate before making the decision to just spend(within reason) and not worry too much about what was spent.  Luckily for us both of us have always been savers and very money frugal in general.  Saying that though we never had budgets and never really had a good understanding where our money went.

Things have changed since moving to a one income household.  Now using the help of mint.com and running my own spreadsheet I track every penny that we use and what it is used for.  I really like how mint.com works in most respects but do have some complaints:

1.  If you set up budgets and you have an expense happen that isn’t in your budget it lumps it into an other expense and doesn’t include that in your monthly total expenses/income. This is why I keep my own spreadsheet also.

2.  We have had several items that keep showing up as pending even though they aren’t pending in our accounts.  Mint’s solution to this just delete them.  Why should I have to where are these coming from are other items incorrect?

3.  Including credit cards in mint.  If you are like us and pay most things via online bill pay but would like to see the transactions that may not have been paid yet on your credit card.  Mint can do this but you have to be very careful to make sure you don’t double count them in your transactions.

Other things besides mint.com have been subscribing to coupon feeds such as Hip2Save.com, among others.  They alert you of deals at Walgreens, cvs, target, among others.

Overall it’s still something we are adjusting to but it has actually been a very beneficial lesson for us.

Leave a Reply