Before allotting any of their money elsewhere each month, Jace Davidson and his wife Stacey write a check to their church.
“I really hold to the principle of, I’m a Christian, so I pay a tithe first, and then myself second,” Jace says. “My wife and I both grew up that way, and we believe in giving and being generous. We believe that we tithe on our money and we’ll be plentiful and have what we need.”
Jace, a 26-year-old entrepreneur, and Stacey, a 25-year-old dietitian, live in Dallas, Texas.
Davidson is not their real last name — they requested to use a pseudonym.
Together, they earn about $US150,000 a year.
Here, they share a typical monthly budget for the household, based on the $US10,000 a month they bring in after taxes. In categories where they provided a range — specifically, electricity, eating out, and general savings — we’ve used the average amount spent.
After tithing, their money goes to savings and investment in index funds.
“My wife and I have a thermometer in our bedroom which has the savings goal for the year and has pictures and things of what we want in the future, both for our family and what I want to do philanthropy,” Jace says. “I’m only 26, so I don’t know when and where that money will go — it depends on what comes my way.” This year, they plan to put away $US75,000. Only the amount they contribute goes on the thermometer, as he explains they can’t and don’t predict investment earnings.
They’re more flexible with their general savings, which they use for trips and to bulk up their $US20,000 emergency fund. Jace says that every year, once the account is at $US10,000 or so, he takes out roughly half the general savings and puts them into investments or business opportunities.
To the best of his ability, he tries to eliminate recurring payments. “As much as I can, I negotiate to pay upfront,” he explains. “I try to negotiate a pretty good rate so I have fewer monthly recurring expenses, so my budget ends up having 20 lines instead of 40.” With semi-regular expenses like insurance, he says, he takes the money out of general savings.
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