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What are non-monthly expenses?
Non-monthly expenses are one of three types of expenses included in your budget:
- Non-monthly expenses are sometimes called budget busters because they’re expenses that can come out of nowhere or from impulse spending. Some common non-monthly expenses are vacations, car repairs, holiday gifts or that big screen TV you couldn’t resist.
- Fixed expenses are the payments and amounts you know about, like rent/mortgage, car or student loan payments.
- Variable expenses are also expenses you know about, but the amounts vary. These are expenses like groceries, gas, utility bills, restaurants, parking or ride shares.
Not a budgeter, you say? If you earn money and spend money, you budget! Whether you keep a spreadsheet down to the penny or toss your bills and receipts into a drawer, it’s easy to forget about non-monthly expenses.
Who experiences non-monthly expenses?
Everyone! These sneak-up-on-you expenses can feel like emergencies, but you can budget for them. You can also save up for things that are long-term, planned purchases.
- Pro Tip: Review your last few bank and credit card statements to see if you’ve had a budget buster. Did you see that expense coming? If you did, it’s something you can prepare for the next time.
How can I budget for non-monthly expenses?
You don’t need a crystal ball to know there are expenses that hit throughout the year, but don’t happen every month. From travel to routine car maintenance, to those save-the-dates for next summer’s weddings, all you need is a calendar.
- Pro Tip: Look through the next 12 months on your calendar. Do you have special events or trips you could be saving for now?
Why should I budget for non-monthly expenses?
Taking control of non-monthly expenses can help make sure they don’t blow up your budget when they happen. Having a clear game plan for the money you earn is the foundation of smart money management.
- Pro Tip: Try keeping your non-monthly expenses account(s) separate from your main banking. Separating these from the rest of your budget is one way to prevent being caught off guard. Keeping them separate helps prevent possible temptation while you save.
You got this
Now you know that “came out of nowhere” expenses have another name: non-monthly expenses. With a little knowledge and some pro tips, you’ll be ready to pay for that extra gift, plane ticket or new license plate sticker!