How Are You Budgeting For Unexpected Expenses?

budget buster
Another month, another budget buster.

Last month your dog swallowed a lego, and the vet bill set you back $800.

This month the emergency call to the plumber blew your budget by a whopping $450.

Remember when your car broke down earlier this year, and the repair bill was nearly $1000?

Oh, and don't forget the trip to the emergency room and the $250 co-pay for your son's broken leg.

Next month you'll get your budget back on track if you're lucky.

Don't count on luck…start budgeting for those surprise expenses.

The Budget Diet girl likes to call those surprise expenses “oh no” expenses or “life happens” expenses. Month after month, year after year you need to budget for things like tires, auto repairs, home repairs, vet bills and medical bills. How many times have you said, next month I’ll get back on track with my budget because I won’t have a car repair, and then next month comes and your air conditioner breaks? Consider “oh no” expenses or “life happens” expenses something you should count on every month, and then you won’t have any surprises. I’ve been budgeting this way for nearly 25 years, and not a month has gone by with some sort of “oh no” expense! This month it was a refrigerator repair, last month the pool pump motor had to be replaced…yes, life happens!

How much should you budget for “Oh No” expenses? Let's do a little math…

  • What's your total monthly income?
  • Subtract your total monthly expenses/bills (mortgage or rent, insurance, utility bills, etc.)
  • The amount that's remaining is your monthly “allowance” for food, fun, gas, dry cleaner and all those everyday expenses.
  • Take 30% of your monthly allowance and set it aside for “oh no” expenses…trust me, you'll need it!

Now when life happens, you'll be financially prepared!

If you need help establishing a budget, simply fill in the blanks of this budget worksheet.


Image courtesy of Arvine Balaraman /

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x