Author Topic: How would you classify this in a budget?  (Read 4805 times)

Zikoris

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How would you classify this in a budget?
« on: May 11, 2014, 01:35:18 PM »
I've been trying to decide how to handle certain transactions in Mint for a while, but keep flip-flopping back and forth. I'm basically trying to figure out whether I should categorize certain things as "Restaurants" under food and dining, or "Eating out" under entertainment.

This includes things like:
-Movie popcorn
-Going out to a bar with friends and ordering fries or some sort of little appetizer (<$5)
-Getting bubble tea when out with friends or relatives

We include actual restaurant meals under "restaurants" (very rare), but we end up with a few little transactions here or there that seem like they could go either way. How do you guys categorize this type of thing?

aj_yooper

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2014, 02:03:04 PM »
We put all that in restaurants.

homeymomma

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2014, 02:07:44 PM »
I tend to put things like that in whichever category "feels" right. Movie popcorn would go with the movie ticket in entertainment. The fries would go under restaurants if that's where your drinks went as well. Bubble tea would go under either one. Depending on which one had more wiggle room that month :)

I like to keep things that happened at the same time together. Like, when we pay for parking at the doctors office I put that charge under "doctor." I suppose it really depends on your goals for tracking your spending. If your trying to cut down a specific category vs. just staying within budget overall across the board. I do my budget the second way, so I can move things around between categories. As long as the net amount is right, the categories matter less.

MDM

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2014, 02:08:37 PM »
In general, if we are paying to eat then it is dining; if paying to watch it's entertainment. 

But you can use your own rules - just be consistent with budget categorization vs. spending categorization if you are comparing spending to budget.

Russ

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2014, 02:09:35 PM »
Interesting that there is a "restaurants as a food necessity" category and a "restaurants as frivolity" category. I'd put everything in whichever one you've started with just to keep it simple.

Ohio Teacher

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2014, 06:13:07 PM »

This includes things like:
-Movie popcorn Food & Dining - Fast Food
-Going out to a bar with friends and ordering fries or some sort of little appetizer (<$5) Food & Dining - Alcohol & Bars
-Getting bubble tea when out with friends or relatives Food & Dining - Coffee Shops

I added in how we categorize those transactions.  For restaurants, if we eat in it's Food & Dining - Restaurants.  If it's to go, it's Food & Dining - Fast Food.

Zikoris

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2014, 07:30:29 PM »
I tend to put things like that in whichever category "feels" right. Movie popcorn would go with the movie ticket in entertainment. The fries would go under restaurants if that's where your drinks went as well. Bubble tea would go under either one. Depending on which one had more wiggle room that month :)

I like to keep things that happened at the same time together. Like, when we pay for parking at the doctors office I put that charge under "doctor." I suppose it really depends on your goals for tracking your spending. If your trying to cut down a specific category vs. just staying within budget overall across the board. I do my budget the second way, so I can move things around between categories. As long as the net amount is right, the categories matter less.

I really like this idea - I went ahead and switched my movie popcorn from "Entertainment - eating out" to "Entertainment - Movies", deleted the "Entertainment - eating out" category altogether, and put the rest back in restaurants (it wasn't a lot, like 8 transactions for the year so far totaling around $50). It looks a lot simpler now. Less categories is better.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2014, 08:32:54 PM »
Entertainment/Discretionary is my catch-all category, but categories are really just whatever works best for you in helping analyze and track it.

I never put non home meals in food. I always put them in either discretionary or travel, depending on whether we were on a trip or not.

4alpacas

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2014, 11:04:32 AM »
I use restaurants for meals.  And social outing stuff like bars, movies, etc. under entertainment. 

I'm also not too obsessed with allowing the co-mingling of the categories. 

socaso

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2014, 01:29:41 PM »
Because we pay for restaurants out of our entertainment money I always use that category. Even things like ordering a delivery pizza go there. Although now that I write that I truly cannot think of the last time I ordered a pizza.

lhamo

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2014, 03:33:57 PM »
We have a "Food - In" category for groceries and a "Food -Out" category for food prepared by other people  or consumed outside the home.  The latter includes ordering in pizza, etc. as well as snacks and beverages consumed outside the home.  Except when we dine out while on vacation I count that as vacation expenses. 

payitoff

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Re: How would you classify this in a budget?
« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2014, 03:37:56 PM »
we put it in Fastfood - we budget about $30/month in quick meals like Jamba, Boba Tea, ice cream, frozen yogurt etc.