financial food for thought no.2


prioritize your expenses

Grab a piece of paper, and using your budget or spending records, figure out what daily, monthly, yearly expenses you have. just write them down on a piece of paper. We have expenses like rent, insurances, charitable contributions, savings, internet. You might have things like phones, credit card minimum payments, school loan payments, and other loan payments.

Put these in a list of the most important to pay first and then down to the least important. For example, it has been show that financially successful families pay at least 10% of their net pay towards charities. Note that just because you don’t pay doesn’t mean that you will become successful, it was just noticed that in financially successful families, it is a common trend. So we have put our most important expense as charitable contribution. Something further down on the list is internet. Yes, it is VERY important to us, but we know it is something we could live without if we ever needed to cut our budget.

Prioritizing our list of expenses really did help us to see what we could live without. Going back to internet. At one point in the past year, we were going over our finances together and realized that we were paying WAY too much for internet and it was kind of sucking our home budget each month. So, we looked at other options. We checked out a lot of other companies and found a company that was a little less than half of what we were paying. We also liked that it was month-month instead of a contract so we could cancel at any time if needed. Lately we have been looking at more options in the internet area. The neighbors around us all have internet so we have been chatting with them to see if we can just give them our router and then split the monthly cost. If there are 4 town homes on the same internet, that is us only paying 1/4 of what we are paying now. Awesome!

So ask yourself with each expense…

Is this really necessary?

  • If it isn’t, CANCEL IT!!!
  • If it is, think of ways that you could reduce the cost
    • do you need to move across the street to the cheaper apts?
    • can you change providers?
    • can you make it? (like my laundry soap)
  • Is there a way to make a bigger purchase now, to cut costs in the end?
    • Like buying a used washer and dryer off of craig’s list so you don’t spend $10.00 on laundry a week

It is IMPORTANT to be honest with yourself.

prioritize your expenses


  1. I think it's actually against internet contracts to split your internet amongst different households, so I wouldn't be sharing with the company the plans you have.

  2. Linz- you know, I had thought about that, but had forgotten to post about it. We are allowed to because of the apartment complex we live in, but I know it is different elsewhere. Thanks for putting that out there.