Budget Lesson, Part 3

I keep calling these lessons, but they are examples and explanations, more than lessons.   Names aside, please see Part 1 and Part 2 to catch up.  The Google Doc of this example is here.

School Lunch

This time, I’m going to review my non-monthly bills.  These are the bills that have to be paid, but not on a monthly basis.  Some are annual, others are quarterly, or even weekly.  Every month, the amount–adjusted to the monthly equivalent–is set aside in Quicken.

  • School Lunch – We don’t qualify for any of the reduced lunch plan, and I don’t know that it is possible to send a brown-bag lunch that is both cheaper and healthier than the school’s menu.  This is automatically replenished whenever it gets below $15.   This actually gets paid about every other month.
  • Property Taxes – Semi-annual and increasing every year.   I know the valuations around me, so I don’t think an appeal would win.
  • Life insurance – We pay this quarterly.   If I die, my family will be completely covered for several years, without adjusting a single expense.   If the expenses are adjusted to account for the fact that I won’t be eating, driving, or using electricity, it will last much longer.  This is a separate policy from the one discussed in Part 2.  GET INSURANCE!  Take care of your family.
  • AAA – Since we got reliable cars, this hasn’t been a money-saver, but it’s priceless in terms of peace of mind.
  • Vehicle Registration – We have two cars and a motorcycle that need registration every year.  I’m planning to sell the bike in the spring, but I was planning that for last spring, too.  It’s easy to put that off, since I enjoy riding.
  • Daycare – Daycare is a weekly expense.  As a two-income family, this isn’t an expense we can do away with…yet.  As time goes on, the bill will be getting lower.   In June, my youngest reaches a cheaper pricing table and my oldest is almost ready to be done with daycare completely.
  • City Bill – Our garbage and sewer are paid through the city on a quarterly basis.
  • Web host – I’ve got this blog, plus a few other side projects hosted here.  I have been simplifying and reducing the projects that aren’t fun or profitable, but I’m not sure this expense will ever go away.

There aren’t too many items here that can be legitimately and responsibly trimmed.

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