Taking A Day Off From Thinking About Money

I was just saying to my husband, “I don’t feel like writing anything today.”  To which he said, “You can’t just take a day off of thinking about your finances.”

You know what?  I don’t agree.  That’s the entire point of simplifying, automating, and organizing your finances:  fix and forget.  Well, maybe not forget, but not be thinking all the time.

What does a normal month of finances look like at our house?  Here’s a short synopsis:

Whatever day that Navy Federal is depositing pay for the 1st:  check to make sure pay was deposited.  Scrape off the “excess” into our savings account.  Do a general look at our accounts and make sure everything looks right.  Consider whether we need to move anything around for any reason.  Do we have any major expenses coming up?  (Last week, my daughter got braces.  Money had to be moved to pay for it.)

Around the third or fourth, check to make sure our tenants have deposited their rent, and that the automatically scheduled mortgage payments cleared.

Whatever day that Navy Federal is depositing pay for the 15th:  check to make sure pay was deposited.  Scrape off the excess into our savings account.  Pay all the money we’ve spent on credit cards this month.  Because I still have one rent deposited into the wrong account, I’ll move that money now.  Do a general look at our accounts again.  Think about the next three weeks worth of expenses.

That’s it.  I do tend to “check in” on things, but only because I am uptight.  These are the only days that I actually need to do anything, and two of those are pretty optional.  I could honestly take care of all of our banking with just one day a month, because everything except our credit cards is automated.  Well, they are automated too, but just for the minimum payments in case I forget.  In order to pay any other amount, I have to make the electronic transfer manually.

This doesn’t mean that I’m not thinking about our spending plan as I spend money over the month, just that I don’t have to slavishly watch our bank account.

Do you have your finances automated?  How much time do you spend managing your income and spending each month?

About the Author

Kate Horrell
Kate Horrell is a military financial coach, mom of four teens, and Navy spouse. She has a background in taxes and mortgage banking, and a trove of experience helping other military families with their money. Follow her on twitter @realKateHorrell.