I recently shared my 2016 Budget Planner and was asked how I’d suggest handling it if someone was paid every two weeks. That made me think because my husband is paid twice a month so it’s easy for me to budget- I know a check will be in the bank on the 1st and 15th.
So, I thought back to when we were getting checks every 2 weeks & here are my suggestions.
- Budget off 2 checks a month. Some months you will get 3- but you will always get at least 2. Always budget on the least amount of money you expect a month. Always better to be UP income than DOWN.
- Put as much in the starting “bucket” as possible. Whatever money you can start off your budget with- the better. This gives you a buffer so if several bills are due on the 10th but your check doesn’t come in until the 12th you have a buffer to protect you from overdrawing.
- Pad your savings. That third paycheck you get a few times a year? Put it into savings. Pretend you never got it. This will help build that buffer even stronger. If you have a strong budget you won’t “need” that third paycheck to cover the bills.
When we used to get paid every two weeks I’d set aside a certain amount from each check to cover the “big” bills, like the mortgage. Get a calendar and estimate your bills. Highlight paydays and write in the amount you expect (again estimate the lowest amount you’d expect) and then write the due dates of each bill (over estimating if necessary). I’ve put a made up example below with made up numbers and bills.