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April Update and The Dead Zone

May 2nd, 2008 at 09:07 pm

Here's the update for April for Checkbook Number One:

Income: 1372.55
Expenses:
Budget:
Groceries 500.00
MC 500.00
The Rest 372.55
Total 1372.55

Actual:
Groceries 565.62
MC 274.61
The Rest 326.86
Total 1167.09


Looks good, doesn't it? We appeared to spend 205.46 less than we made. However, we seemed to run about 100.00 short this month. How can this be?

I've determined it's because of The Dead Zone.

DH gets paid once monthly, but usually his paycheck comes in and is deposited 3 to 5 days prior to the end of the month. That paycheck is then used for next month's expenses. Those 3 to 5 days were The Dead Zone - before the end of the month, so anything spent during The Dead Zone didn't count for the current month because it was next month's paycheck, and didn't count for next month because it wasn't next month.

Clear as mud, eh? Basically some of April's money was spent during the last few days of March. It didn't "count" for March - partly because I wasn't really counting then, and partly because it was a new check. And it couldn't *really* count in April because it wasn't there.

The Dead Zone should disappear this month - all expenses now count for the month in which they are incurred. The tricks we can play on ourselves are mind boggling.

3 Responses to “April Update and The Dead Zone”

  1. gotthedeclutterbug Says:

    is that the total monthly income your family makes? Because if so, that doesn't sound like a lot.

    But you seemn to be doing ok with what you have. I do have to wonder though if you can't get your grocery budget down if there are just 3 of you at home. Not putting you down, just trying to help you cut your expenses so you have money for your 'dead zone.'

  2. Petunia Says:

    No, this isn't the total income. The total is divided between two checkbooks, and most of the bills (mortgage, utilities, etc) are paid from the other account. This account is the one that pays groceries, gas, clothing, etc - more discretionary type expenses. (The details are in an earlier post.) It always runs at a deficit and right now I'm trying to get income and expenses to be even in it.

    Believe it or not, this is the lowest our food spending has been in a long time! That's definitely a budget category that's easy to overspend!

  3. reflectionite Says:

    lol! the dead zone...

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