March & April 2017 One Income Family Budget Update

Finding ways to make a one income family budget work while living in one of the most expensive cities in the US can be a challenge.

But our family is finding ways to live our dream life in those exact circumstances and we want to share what we are learning with you! 

Have you ever felt like there was absolutely no extra money and feel like you are constantly treading water when it comes to your family finances?

We have been there! Before we started to get on track, there was a time when we would be getting overdraft fees almost every pay period. Super frustrating!

She does such a great job of showing exactly how they budget on one income! Every single spending category with exact numbers showing how to save money on one income. She shares every single dollar that goes in and out of their one income family budget.

But once we started using a cash envelope system and became hard core meal planning nerds, all of a sudden we started to find ways to put money towards our debt.

We are now debt free and are working towards saving to purchase our first home!

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram because that is where you will get the very most up to date information when it comes to our family finances and everything we are learning.

Why do we share our family budget?

I personally find it very motivating to learn about other family budgets and what they do to manage them. Learning about their tricks on how to make their pennies stretch and what they do when obstacles come up.

One problem I have seen though, is that a lot of articles out there are families that live where the cost of living is a lot less then where we live. Making their budget a lot less realistic for us to follow.

I want to show you guys how to live on one and that it is completely doable, even if you live in an area where the cost of living is high.

Our family lives in San Diego, which is one of the most expensive places to live in the United States. But we are finding ways to make it work on one income and I want to help you do the same thing!

Check out our previous month’s budget updates here to find out what we have been learning along the way.

The REAL Numbers of our Budget 

Make sure to watch the video so you can see every single number that goes into our budget. I walk you through every dollar that goes in and out of our bank account.

You can get your own Beginners Budgeting Toolkit for FREE by clicking here.

Rockin’ the Side Hustle

Pennies Into Pearls is still bringing in the budgeted goal of $500 each month to put directly into our house savings!

I have been working my booty off to get some extra money coming in so I can get my business savings goals reached so we can take even more money home each month from my business!

I do still consider our family a “one income family”, because $500 is more of a side hustle income. Once Pennies Into Pearls starts to bring home a consistent $2,000 or more each month, I will then no longer consider us a one income family. That seems fair, right?

Tommy has been working hard at work becoming trained and qualified to become an instructor. This is a great opportunity to earn a supplement to his regular paycheck.

Our goal is for him to work 10 hours each month of overtime. This will allow us to put $1,200 in savings each month, on top of the $500 from my business.

We have pretty big savings goals currently so we can work towards saving to buy our first home.

What to do with “extra” cash? 

We got our Costco Citi Card cash reward in March! It was about $120, so that’s pretty awesome!!!

We pretty much only put our gas spending on this card. Not that we feel we have a good system in place of paying off the card as soon as we use it, going forward we plan to put a few more purchases on the card.

This way we can build our rewards even higher for next year!

We haven’t quiet figured out what we will be using this “extra” cash for. I have come up with a few different ideas but still need to sit down with hubby to make a decision.

One thing we do is keep a list of “wants” and “needs”. This is an ongoing list that sticks around all year and into the next. This list lives in my phone but you could do the same thing on a simple piece of paper hanging on your fridge.

The two main choices I see would be either 1) Put the money towards buying a new BBQ for the summer. Our current one is just about to pass on. 2) Put the money towards a “camping” fund for the summer. 

Both options are fun choices, we just need to decide which we value more and then make savings plans for the other. Because we will definitely be needing a new grill this summer and we will definitely be going beach camping at least once! So we need cash for both!

How is your family budget doing?

Do you feel like you are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel? I would be more than happy to answer any questions about our one income family budget in hopes of helping you make adjustments on your own budget!

Thanks for stopping in and I will talk to you soon! xoxo


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  • smoretraiolit
    May 8, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    I do agree with all of the ideas you have presented in your post. They are really convincing and will certainly work. Still, the posts are very short for starters. Could you please extend them a little from next time? Thanks for the post.