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Poll: Just 32% Of Americans Keep A Household Budget

Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 6:10 PM
Compare that to a Pew Social Trends poll conducted a few years back. The Pew poll asked, "Do you have a budget to guide your household expenses or don't you rely on a formal budget?" Described in those broader terms, 48 percent of Americans said they kept a budget.

Poll: Just 32% of Americans Keep a Household Budget - DailyFinance
4
ShorebreakShorebreak2,365 posts since
Apr 6, 2010
Rep Points: 12,598
1. Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 7:14 PM
Each year in November and December I review the year's expenses and prepare a month-by-month budget for the coming year. 

There are some expenses over which I have little control (ex.:  property taxes, health insurance).  For the others (example:  groceries, gas) I set a realistic goal and adjust as economic conditions change.  On these, I always have a good snapshot of my progress, since I post my transactions at the end of the day.    If I have to increase my spending in one category I first check to see if I can cut back in another, otherwise I just go ahead and update the plan accordingly.

The plan also also helps me anticipate my cash needs:  for example, my property taxes are included in my budget, but they are not paid until the end of the year, so I don't need the cash available until then. 
2
pearlbrownpearlbrown1,356 posts since
Nov 2, 2010
Rep Points: 5,955
2. Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 7:40 PM
I prepare an annual budget and hopefully stick to it. Unfortunately it's the insurance companies and property taxes that mess it up. Always increases.
2
ShorebreakShorebreak2,365 posts since
Apr 6, 2010
Rep Points: 12,598
3. Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 7:47 PM
For those who don't already have a budget and may want to change that, this article from credit.com describes how to get started. 
3
pearlbrownpearlbrown1,356 posts since
Nov 2, 2010
Rep Points: 5,955
4. Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 9:00 PM
I don't know if what I do fits in the category of "having a budget".  My budget is in my head.  I know how much money we have coming in so I make sure I keep enough in the checking account to cover all autopaid bills and keep a certain amount of cash at home for shopping which I don't want to put on the credit card.  If an unexpected emergency bill arises, I have an account for that but that would not be a regular bugeted item.  My way runs smoothly for me so far so I guess it could be considered a "budget". 
2
paoli2paoli21,140 posts since
Aug 10, 2011
Rep Points: 5,083
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