Bi Weekly Budget | How to Budget When You are Paid Every Other Week!
Owning Your Bi Weekly Budget
Bi weekly versus semi monthly pay.
First, let’s start with some clarification about how you are getting paid.
Semimonthly pay is getting paid twice a month– usually on the 1st and the 15th. Bi weekly pay is getting paid every other week.
After many years of getting paid semimonthly, on the 1st and 15th of every month, I recently started a new job that pays me bi weekly. I didn’t realize it at the time, but bi weekly pay forced me to learn a whole new way to budget. Some months I’m getting paid twice, others three times. Not always the same weeks.
All that change had me scratching my head like, whaaaaaaat?
How often am I getting paid a year with bi weekly pay?
Twenty-six times a year. Occasionally, depending on how the calendar falls, it can be twenty-seven, but for planning purposes– twenty-six.
Getting Yourself Organized
Set up your monthly budget for all categories.
Getting paid once a month, twice a month, every week—it doesn’t matter. You need to know where your money is going.
Groceries. Utilities. Mortgage/Rent. Gas. Insurance. Car Payment. Cell Phone. Internet. Haircuts. Clothing. Gym. Debt Payments.
Drop your email below if you want to receive your very own bi weekly budget template. A super simple spreadsheet to track your bi weekly pay and give yourself a year-long overview. Super helpful when making sure you are staying on track with your plan and goals! If Google is more your thing– I’ve also set up Google Sheets bi weekly budget template!
Track all bi weekly pay in Google Calendar.
As you might have read in one of my previous posts, I’m a HUGE fan of my Google Calendar. It helps me keep my life on track and organized and budgeting is no exception.
Part of it is that the visualization really helps me understand what’s happening in each month, but also the bonus of getting the reminder so I don’t forget due dates and how I’ve allocated funds in my budget.
Go ahead and schedule out the rest of your paychecks for the rest of the year.
Add all regularly occurring bills to Google Calendar.
Again, you want to be able to see what is due, when its due so you can then decide when and how you are going to pay it.
For large dollar items, like rent or your mortgage, I like to split payments. If my rent is $1200, I split it into payments of $600
Note: A bonus to scheduling this, is you get to plan ahead if there are one time expenses you need to budget. Example: birthday’s, Yearly car inspection, holiday spending, etc. No need to last-minute scramble for money to cover those expenses.
It’s far easier to put an extra $7/month away for a few months than to all the sudden have to come up with $100 because of poor planning.
I’ve organized my pay and my expenses– now what?
Set aside a month’s worth of expenses.
A goal of mine is to save up enough money for a month’s worth of expenses. I can’t imagine too many things more stressful than living paycheck to paycheck. Getting a month ahead helps to alleviate the stress for a few reasons.
First, since you won’t be getting paid at the same time of the month every month, but typically bills are due at the same time every month. If you are a month ahead, you will always have the money ready to pay bills as they are due regardless if you are getting paid during the first or second week of the month. You have the flexibility to pay when it best works for you and the due date versus being forced into a certain window because of your ever-changing pay date.
Second, peace of mind. If anything, unexpected pops up you have time to adjust for that change.
A word of caution– this is not a free for all pot of money. The purpose of this fund is to maximize your flexibility in paying bills. This is also not an emergency fund.
Check yourself, before you wreck yourself!
Budget off two paychecks per month.
As I’m sure you know there will be some months you will have an extra payday– usually about twice a year. If you can afford it, put that extra paycheck aside. It’s an easy way to give yourself a buffer (saving a month ahead as I mentioned above) or a start to your Emergency Fund.
And that’s how I rock my bi weekly budget every month!
How do you budget bi weekly? Any tips or hacks to share? I’d love to hear from you, please comment down below.