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I am new here and looking for lots of advice because I am determined to only have to work part time and if I can't figure out how to make our finanaces work I am going to have to work full time.
First off my husband only works 7 months a year and then is on unemployment the other months because he is a indoor/outdoor painter. He has been looking into getting a different job that is year round. He has applied for a few painting jobs and has also gone and got his security license in attempt to find a new job.
I work in our local ER doing registration I get health insurance and benefits for the family.
We have 1 personal loan that we had to get to pay a few lawyers for 4000$
Otherwise we have no debt besides our monthly expenses. However, with everything going up and DH coming to his off season I am so worried about having to give up on my dream of only working part time.
How do you all keep yourself on your budget or having such self control? We are very much live for the moment kind of people and can convince ourselves that we need to do or go anywhere.
I really do want to make this work (and obviously if we can't- I will work full time) So any advice would be greatly appreciated.
We do not live above our means. We make a budget each and every month...WRITTEN OUT, and we stick to it. If it is not on the budget it doesn't get bought and that's just the way it is. We have zero debt, no loans, no credit cards nada (by choice). We have each of our bills on our budget along with our monthly income and if there is anything left over that goes into savings. We stay dedicated because we know we have to be. We see the big picture and know that eventually we want to retire and so we will need a retirement fund, and we know that one day our cars will need to be replaced and we'll have to have that money in the savings account (because we do not do car loans), and that things in the house will break so we have an emergency fund. I truly don't mean this rudely, but it's called being a grown up. Sometimes you have to tell yourself NO, simply because the money isn't there or it truly isn't needed. There's no "convincing" something either is needed or is wanted, if it is wanted then it does not have to be purchased, if it is needed then it does it's as simple as that. Yep, I want a newer car, but we need to save a bit more money before I can do that so I've had to tell myself no for right now. We had some unexpected expenses come up this month that came out of our miscellaneous portion of our budget, so when an opportunity came up with cub scouts to go to a baseball game, we explained to our son that we had some unexpected expenses and it wasn't in the budget this month and we were sorry. Sometimes it just means telling yourself (or someone else) no and you have to get to a point where that is okay.
With your husband already working part-time, I am guessing it will be hard to work it out for you to work part-time as well. To be honest, I am curious as to why he collects unemployment because he has a seasonal job, is that what most seasonal workers do?
When trying to figure out what you can afford, it has to come down to fulfilling your needs first (housing, food, etc) and then seeing if you can afford wants (cable, cell phones, etc-YES, those ARE WANTS, not needs even though society tries to pull them off as needs).
Savings IS a need, because expense (like home repair, cars, etc WILL come up).
We tend to be more like you in that we are spenders and live for right now . Its is a constant struggle and you just have to write out a budget. I found that using the cash system helped us to stick to it. If the cash wasn't there we couldn't buy it. We put the debit card "away" so we couldn't use it. That way there was no way we could impluse buy. Its a habit that has to be broken. The cash system or envelope system doesn't work for everyone and usually takes a few months to get used to. First things first you have to sit down and write out a budget of what goes out and what comes in and see exactly where you are sitting each month. Its the only way to know for sure if you need to work full or part time. Also a good goal for you would be if you want to work part time ensure that you have enough in savings to cover bills that your DH's unemployment won't cover. So during his working season you save up the money you need to make the year even, if that makes sense.
Post questions here and don't get discouraged if it doesn't just click. This takes some time and patience to build a new habit but you can do it. Set a goal that helps too.