Here is my budget for January 2010. I'll be updating it with actual expenditure figures at the end of the month, but my main goal is to keep my textbook costs below the budgeted amount by:

1) buying used; and
2) selling my books at the end of the term.

JANUARY 2010 Estimated Actual
Irregular Expenses

Books/Supplies $349.00
Windshield replacement $146.90


Braces (consultation/visits)

Monthly Expenses

Rent $597.50
Laundry $0.00
Cable and internet $35.00
Cell phone $100.00
Groceries $0.00
Personal Care, meds $50.00
Car Insurance $113.00
Car Maintenance $0.00
tire installation and rustproofing $0.00
Transpo - Gas $50.00
entertainment $50.00
bank fees $10.00
LOC payments $28.00
periodic ING & CIBC MF Investments $160.00
AfterGrad Savings account $1,280.00
postage, stamps, printing $22.70
miscellaneous $5.00
Total $2,997.10

I have some extra cash flow coming in over the next month in the form of awards, so I'm putting that into my 'After Grad' emergency fund, as previously mentioned. Laundry = $0 because I plan on doing the same thing I did last term, which was to take my clothes home with me every other weekend in a giant laundry basket so I can wash my clothes at mom's house. Also, postage, stamps and printing costs are expected to be slightly higher due to second year legal applications being due this month, each of which costs $1.50. I expect to be sending out 15 tops, so it comes out to $22.50. Finally, gas is only $50 this month because I already had a full gas tank at the beginning of the month :)

I've seen a couple of other bloggers' budgets online and the estimated vs. actual method seems to be quite common. Is there another way of doing this that's more efficient?
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