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29 Feb 2012

When a Bonus Really Becomes a Bonus!

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by Jesse Mecham

This came to my inbox from Trudy yesterday. There’s a lot to glean here!

For the last 5 years I’ve had a job that pays a bonus in late March/early April. That bonus has always been spoken for – and then some – by February. Property taxes, income tax, medical bills, home owner’s insurance, new tires, whatever …

This year, after using YNAB consistently just since last July, that bonus is going to the the topic of a very joyous conversation for my husband and me. Not one penny of it is allocated. When the bonus pays out we are going to sit down and actually make conscious decisions on how to give every bit of it a job. It won’t all go to fun since we’re still paying off debt, but what a huge relief to not have to hope that the property tax doesn’t come due until the bonus is paid, or worry that the balding tires will wear out too soon.

Rule One helped them squeeze dollars that were simply slipping through their fingers and allocate them toward Rule Two categories (income tax, medical bills, homeowner’s insurance, new tires, whatever…).  That’s the gist of it. The bonus then truly became a bonus.

Congrats to Trudy. That “how do we allocate this bonus” conversation is going to be a lot of fun!

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Remember, budgeting is not restrictive. You won’t be spending less, you’ll be spending right. You can do this! Today. Right now. What do you have to lose? Except all that debt and stress. (Ok, so kind of a lot.)

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