Income- Section A
Q. Do I have to break out all the deductions in my check?
A. Absolutely not. Just enter your net take home for your gross amount and don't show any deductions.
Q. What if my monthly income varies?
A. Good Question! Experience has taught us to average out your income based on annual or semi annual totals, adjusting for any known changes such as a raise. Here is an example using Semi monthly paychecks- The previous year's net take home was $30,000, so divide the annual total by the number of pay periods. Semi monthly has 24, so you would enter $1,250.00 for your Semi monthly income. If you were paid weekly, you would divide the annual amount by 52 and enter $576.92.
Q. I receive one monthly check, but it is paid to me on the 20th of the month. The spreadsheet wants to put it on the 1st of the month. How do I change this?
A. Use line 65, transfers in Section C. Enter a negative amount of the net check in Column C, the first week of the month and a positive amount of the net check in Column E, the third week of the month.
Cash Expenses - Section B-1
Q. I don't have the same expenses that are on the spreadsheet. What can I do?
A. You can type in your specific descriptions into each cell. All areas that are HIGHLIGHTED can be changed. Use descriptions that fit your expenses.
Q. Why are there are not enough lines for all my expenses to be listed?
A. We have found that a Pouch with more than 8-10 categories becomes cumbersome to administrate.Combine several of the smaller expenses under one category and call it "Other".
Timing of Expenses - Section B-2
Q. I have more expenses in the first part of the month than I have income to pay them. How do I handle this problem?
A. This is very common and can easily be handled by the Pouch. I'm going to list the most effective measures, in order, below.
- day"Pre-fund" an expense by allocating money from the current month into next month. Let's assume your house payment is due on the 1st and is $1,250. Your net take home pay is $1,000 per week so your are short of income for the week. Our suggestion would be to have about 1/2 or $500 of the 4th week's check from the PREVIOUS month allocated for the house payment. Now you have covered your house payment and have $500 to apply to other expenses during the 1st week of each month.
- If you have more than one expense during this period, move expenses to a different period until you have reduced your expenses to a level your check will cover. You may have to prepay, like in example #1, or you can possibly use the "grace period" provided for by the vendor. Check and may sure such a provision exist, don't just assume you can be late. Most banks, insurance companies, and small businesses allow 3 to 5 days, but once again, give them a call and make sure.
- Contact the entity you are paying and see if they can move, or split up a portion of, the payment to your next pay period.
- If the expense is in a latter period of the month, simply split up the payment and put some of it into one of the earlier pay periods of the the current month where you have available funds.