Because I get paid bi-monthly, my bills for the month always say I'm in the negative.  How do I manage this?

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  • You only budget the money you have.  Once your TBB has reached $0 then you stop budgeting.  Once you get paid again then you can budget the remainder of the month.

  • You only budget until your TBB says 0. Then you stop. When you get more money, then you can continue to budget. So with the money you have right now, you have to prioritize your budgeting. What needs to get paid before you receive more money? Make sure those categories are funded.

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    • Additionally, large expenses might have to be split across both checks. If so, allocate this check's portion now.

  • Ideally, over time, save  a reserve fund of one month's expenses. I have a special category for this, and when the new month rolls around, I move the money from it into all the categories. Then, my next two paychecks go to building up my reserve fund for the following month. 

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      • JollyB
      • jollyb
      • 1 yr ago
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      I agree with @silver_boa.    You should try to save a buffer and get one month ahead (i.e. to live on last month's money).  I think you should try to budget on two paychecks a month (which you probably do already).  Since you get paid bi-weekly, this means that twice a year you get paid 3 times in one month.  One of those 3 paychecks could go into your buffer fund to help get it built up.

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  • For now you just budget the money you have on hand.  For the bi-monthly people, getting a month ahead (or even just two weeks ahead) is the key to being able to budget just once a month, rather than having to wait till your next paycheck to fill in those budget categories.  I'm lucky I get paid once a month so I don't have to worry about that.

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  • I now budget by paycheque rather than by month. I am paid biweekly so this was a huge wake up call for me in months like this one where my mortgage comes out on the 2nd but I don’t get paid until the 8th.  I used to budget all my income for the month (Dave Ramsey style) but then have no money for the mortgage payment in the bank.  I am currently one paycheque ahead (we have 2 each per month for a total of 4) which is enough for the mortgage and a few other early month bills as well as some food and gas. I set this amount up in a separate category called Month Ahead.  At the end of the month there needs to be enough in that category to cover those things. When the month rolls over, I “move” Month Ahead available amount to To Be Budgeted and then budget to zero. On the 8th when we get paid, I’ll budget to zero again.  Then for the last cheque ( on the 22nd) I’ll replenish Month Ahead with the amount I started with and then finish budgeting which is usually end of month auto expenses and discretionary. 

  • I am in the same situation and have started budgeting from zero from each paycheck. But how have you been handling the "necessary" bills you know you have to pay? I have been using the running balance feature to add the minimum and then I just make sure the balance is never negative, but if there is a better way I would do it. At least until I get the buffer up. 

    • Slate Blue Pilot (2903ac015cdb) First, budget for the necessary bills you need to pay *before your next paycheck*. If you run out of money to budget, but a bill doesn't need to be paid until your next paycheck, you can budget for that bill when the next paycheck arrives.

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