A recent article in Lifehacker talks about the best ways to optimize your money if you don’t have a steady stream coming in on a month to month basis. When budgeting money, people normally consider two very important things, how much money is coming in and how much can be allocated for certain things. What if you don’t have a regular paycheck coming in? In the Lifehacker article they explain, “those with unpredictable incomes must work “backward”—starting with the amount of money you’ll spend to figure out how much you need. If your income is unstable, then it is your expenditures that must be stable, predictable, and repeatable.”
Looking at your baseline, you will first need to consider your food costs. Groceries should be your number one priority. You should try and only include groceries in your budget and limit or stay away completely from restaurants and fast food establishments. Being frugal with your money is essential so cutting out any unnecessary costs will help you out. Included in your baseline will be your rent or mortgage expense along with any homeownwers insurance as well as property taxes. The area in which you live could also impact your utilities. If you need heating or cooling, you will have to consider these utilities as well, along with phone and internet if needed. Nowadays, most people can get by without signing up for a phone service because cell phones are becoming the go to way to contact people. So cutting out a phone service could be another consideration that will help you cut down on your expenses. Another major expense is health insurance. This should of course be included in your expense category and should be considered greatly. For some people, health insurance could be a major contributing factor as to why they go bankrupt.
These are just a few expenses that one should be mindful of when considering budgeting with an irregular income. Having these all layed out will put things into perspective and will help you make better choices with your money.