In this March 2022 budget, I share our family’s real budget so that you can see how we plan and follow our journey toward reaching our financial goals.

To give you my standard intro to our family’s situation: we’re an international couple living in Korea. My online tutoring business is in the US, so I earn in US dollars, but my husband works here in Korea.

 

Background

 

We’ve been waiting and waiting for my husband to be able to move forward with a career change he’s been planning. It looks like this March finally be the month. Maybe. Probably? Still not entirely sure.

That means our budget here is still a little tough to predict. It’s unclear what our transportation costs will be or whether we will need to purchase a car.

Our childcare is up in the air right now as well. We’ve had some bad luck recently with one babysitter moving away and another having to quarantine due to Covid. We’re on a waiting list in a couple of places and are trying our best to find a replacement, but it’s been rough. Lots of unknowns there too.

 

Business Income

 

My tutoring business has been a lot lighter for the past month and a half, but I’m hoping it will pick up soon. I use Profit First to even things out so that I can take a consistent salary, so I know things will be ok. But it will still be nice to see a big upswing if possible.

My goal is to reach $6500 in revenue, which is going to be tough unless I can find quite a few new students. I had the same goal for February but wasn’t quite able to reach it.

Profit First Categories:

  • Projected Revenue: $6500
  • 63% to Owner’s Comp: $4095
  • 18% to Taxes: $1170
  • 17% to Expenses: $1105
  • 2% to Profit: $130

2022 March Budget Profit First
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Since March marks the end of Quarter 1, I will also be paying myself a modest bonus out of my Profit account. I expect that to be about $400.

 

Additional Income

 

As I have done previously, I’ve blocked out below our individual incomes for privacy reasons. Including my bonus, we are counting on a combined income of about $4600 this month.

I’m also budgeting for the typical 250,000 won (about $210) we receive from the Korean government for our son. That may change, though, since one childcare option we are pursuing would involve switching to a slightly different government program that subsidizes childcare directly. Regardless, I’m grateful for the support the government provides for all parents in Korea.

2022 March Budget Income
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As always, I’m also hoping we’ll be able to find some extra income through selling a few things, doing surveys, or other random sources. I never budget for that income, however.

 

Major Financial Goals

 

Because we saved so much money when our childcare fell through, we did surprisingly well with our financial goals in February. I’m hoping we’ll still be able to save aggressively in March, even with our childcare expenses back closer to their regular level.

2022 March Budget Major Financial Goals
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  • Retirement savings: $1000 into my Roth IRA
  • Emergency fund: Still not planning to actively contribute to this beyond what we accumulate in interest.
  • Vacations/flights: $150
  • New car: $549 – every remaining penny from our budget is landing here

If we end up not needing a car, or if my husband receives a car as a perk for his job change, then we’ll redirect that money into my Roth IRA. I’m playing catch up for 2021, since last year I contributed to my Solo 401k. In an ideal world, we’d be able to reach the $6000 limit for IRA contributions by April 15th, although I don’t think that is realistic.

 

Normal Expenses

 

We did very well with our normal expenses in February, and I’m hoping we can keep some of the momentum up for March.

2022 March Normal Expenses Budget
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Some notable points:

  • Gas for our apartment: February’s gas bill was the highest we’d ever had, and March’s bill is even a bit higher than that. I’m looking forward to warmer weather…
  • Groceries & Eating Out/Delivery: I’m hoping we can keep this budget category cut back from what we had been spending last year. We’re stocked up on the staples, so it’s possible. Minimizing eating out has been good for my health, too.
  • Babysitter: It feels weird to say, but it would be great if we can spend all of this budgeted amount this month. That means we will have solved our babysitter problem.
  • Transportation: Just like we’ve done for the past couple of months, we’re budgeting a little toward car rentals and public transportation, and a little towards car insurance and gas. This is because we don’t know when we’ll start using our own car. We’ll likely not use all of the budgeted amount, so it actually doubles as a buffer in our budget.

 

Sinking Funds

2022 March Sinking Funds Budget
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We use sinking funds for expenses that are more discretionary and that vary from month to month. Notable items from our March 2022 budget:

  • Personal spending: I receive less than my husband and my toddler because I simply need less. I’ve never been a big spender.
  • Clothes: We have plenty in this sinking fund, so we’re not planning to contribute to it.
  • Car repairs: This sinking fund has been on our budget for the past two months, but we’ve never contributed to it. We’ll start it once we actually have a car. If that doesn’t happen in March either, then we’ll just put the money toward another goal.

 

Overall

 

It’s honestly been tricky to budget these past few months with so many unknowns. But what I’ve learned from the process is that by budgeting for multiple contingencies, we’ve ended up having buffers in our budget. That has let us shift money around from one line item to another as necessary during the month. And the end result has been that we’ve consistently been able to exceed our savings goals. I’m hoping the same will be true for this March 2022 budget.

This post may contain an affiliate link or a referral link. For more information, please see my disclosure here.

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