When we decided I would take the year off to work on Special Need Tech, I decided I needed to be more serious about our budget. Since we got married, we have always been pretty good about staying on track with savings, etc. We lived on one income until we had kids (then one of us stayed home for the first three years, so we actually were on one income.) We have always bought less house than we could afford.
But it never hurts to do a re-examination.
So I compared where we are against the percentages that are recommend by financial experts (taken from a Real Simple article):
5% = The maximum % of your take home pay you should owe in credit card debt: we’re golden here. We pay off our credit card each month
10% = The minimum % of pretax income you should save for retirement: We actually only save 3% of pre-tax income so we have a lot of room to grow. But we save over 10% of after-tax income so I am not feeling too shabby. Still, we are going to put a recent pay raise towards raising the amount of pre-tax income.
28% = The % of pretax income that should go towards housing: We spend around right at this or will once we complete our refinance to a 15 year loan. We are trying to get our house paid off by the time the girls are in college.
Overall, we are right on track!