Hello. Could someone please direct me to a site or library book that defines the “envelope” system? I want to try it.

Hey, try http://www.mvelopes.com/ or just watch the following videos:

We use the envelope system for the expenses for his business (eyeglass repair) and for some of our personal expenses, including savings, food, vehicle expenses, entertainment, and laundry/clothing. It keeps us from over spending in those areas. The stress relief is amazing!

I am interested in the Dave Ramsay method, but can’t afford to pay for it right now. I will go to the library and get the books I think – BUT in the meantime could someone just tell me in a paragraph or so what the envelope system entails? Is it just, for example, it costs me $90 a week for transportation(public)……I would just put that in an envelope each payday, right?Or, you have a budget for $100 a week for food, that goes in the envelope…correct?

My trouble is I am so far behind on all bills. like my rent is $1400, today is the first, and I was $400 shy, so I wrote the landlord a note (its a person, not a corporation)that I would have the rest in two weeks, then I push bills back for the two weeks, and round and round like a hamster in a cage, never getting ahead. I have this intense fear in my heart that he will kick me and my kids out, and I could cry just thinking about letting the kids down that way.

But I have to start somewhere doing something, so I was thinking of the envelope system.

ALso, a few messages back some folks had good advice about expaniding your food money–could I get some of that advice again? I don’t eat red meat, and want to be healthy in terms of eating lots of fruits and vegetables – some people were very helpful, for example eggs and potatoes could be inexpensive and satisfying and not unhealthy. For vegetables, carrots in the stick (not those washed and peeled ones) seem cheap.

I use the envelope system and it works for me. For the spending categories that are the most flexible like food, gas, entertainment, and clothing you get an envelope and mark it with that category name. Then, as money comes in you put money in the envelopes. Some people fill the envelopes weekly or monthly. We use two sets – one set has our business expenses and money goes into them daily from the cash DH’s business brings in.

The other set is our personal expenses and money goes into them every two weeks when I get paid. Let’s say you decide $300 a month is for groceries and you get paid every other week. In that case, you put $150 in the food envelope every time you get paid. Do that with each category/envelope. When the money is gone from a particular envelope, that’s it – no more is spent on that category until you fund the envelope again. If there’s money left in an envelope at the end of the period (right before you’re about to fund it again) you can move that money to savings, keep it in the envelope and just put less in to make the difference, etc.

It might take a little while to get the system working just right for you but if you use it, it DOES work. The key is to not spend money on a category after the envelope for that category is empty. Personally, I think this works best in conjunction with a monthly spend it all on paper before you get it budget. Do you have a budget set up?

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