Overseas holidays, annual insurance bills, those clusters of birthdays that happen in even the best-planned families. We all have times of year that we know will be uber-expensive.
And then there’s the unexpected stuff… car tyres, medical expenses, speeding tickets.
“I just need to get past this expensive time” is a myth I used to use all the time. I was always going to stop using my credit card, pay down debt, and start saving - next month. This month, there were too many bills that I couldn't have anticpated.
It’s a myth.
Not that some times of year are expensive. That’s true.
It’s a myth that expensive times are an aberation. Most months are expensive.
Life happens. Things break or wear out, and need repairing or replacing. Winter sets in and the power bill sky- rockets. Our child's sports team wins their way into a tournament in another city. And the expensive months that we about did know in advance have a way of coming around faster every year.
But it’s also a myth that there’s nothing we can do but carry on the way we have been - scraping through and waiting for a 'normal' month before we get serious about saving or reducing debt.
Your Annual Spending Plan can save you, if you put all your irregular and "unexpected" expenses in before they happen.
It is true that some of this planning will be your best guess, not an accurate prediction. But you can ballpark it. You know how old your appliances are, whether the car is due for new tyres and what it costs to have the vet treat your cat after it gets into another fight with the neighbour’s cat.
Estimate it. Put it in your Annual Spending Plan. Know about it in advance. That’s the way you’ll honestly get past the expensive times.