You know when you move, and you say you for sure will never, ever, ever move again, because moving is its own unique hell? Well, I forgot. I sold my house, I close in a month. And—with God as my witness and hold me accountable Internet—I will never, ever move again.
However, this move is different (in a good way) than my last move in one big way: my last move was pre-YNAB. Now, I budget and what a difference it makes.
The Budget Is A Dealbreaker
I want to be really clear, though: I don’t just have a budget. I live by my budget. I work the budget. I have been budgeting with YNAB for almost 10 years, I am practically budgeting royalty.
When I first started budgeting, I had to learn how to budget. I had to learn how to budget while digging out of credit card debt. Double whammy!
It’s like driving, you’re learning how to drive while actually driving, which upon second thought is kind of scary. It’s not like watching a tasty video on your facebook feed and then saying, “Ok, I know how to make that now.” You learn budgeting by budgeting, and you improve with practice and time.
Budgeting Is A Skill, An Art And A Discipline
In the past ten years, I’ve had ample opportunity to hone my budgeting skills:
- I paid off all of the credit card debt.
- I completed a major home renovation and paid cash for it.
- I saved for vacations for the first time in my life.
- I dealt with the unexpected death of my last car.
- In fact, I dealt with numerous unexpected expenses and paid cash for all of them.
What’s kept me in the game so long is rolling with the punches. Life can and will throw financial punches at you and I’ve gotten really good at punching back.
Which brings me back to my current hell, er, move.
As Simple As Planning Ahead
Last fall, I made the decision to move closer to family. Once I made the decision, I immediately took action and started making adjustments in my budget. I started budgeting more aggressively to my home repair category. I knew a few things would need to be done before listing the house for sale.
Then I made a new category: Moving Expenses.
I decided that I wanted to pay movers this time. I just don’t want to move all the stuff or organize a crew of family and friends to do it. I want someone else to come in and just move everything. It was a priority for me. I wasn’t sure how much it would cost at the time so I made a goal of saving $2,000 by this summer, and started budgeting toward it.
Sure enough, I’m ready for the movers. That may be the most exciting part of the move.
I set a slightly higher goal for the repairs. I had a broker come out and look things over, which generated a list of things to fix. But I was ready. Home Repair category for the win!
I listed the house in May, it went under contract in just three weeks. During the usual round of inspections, they found some issues and suddenly, I had to come up with another $400. Upper cut! But no biggie, I had the money in the budget.
The Budget to the Rescue!
The moral of the story is if you anticipate moving anytime in the remote future you need a budget. Also, if you eat food, drive a car, or live in a covered dwelling. Or if you have a family. Or if you want to have a family. Or if you have a furry family.
On second thought, the moral of the story is just simply, you need a budget. 🙂