List of Irregular Expenses

Budget for these expenses that crop up throughout the year

Mature couple doing paperwork and using computer
Musketeer/Getty Images

Feel like something is always blowing your budget? Irregular expenses are likely to blame. You may have a handle on the ones that come up monthly, but the ones that pop up every now and then weren't in your budget. Take a look at this long list of irregular expenses, and make sure you've included everything in your budget that you should:

Insurance

Your insurance expenses may be billed monthly or you may elect to pay them just annually or quarterly.

Taxes - Retirement - Charity

If you don't pay as you go, these can turn into large expenses you will have to fund once a year or quarterly.

  • Estimated tax payments
  • Property tax: This might be paid out of escrow by your mortgage company, but if the tax went up you will have to make up the difference.
  • Income tax payment (if not enough was withheld)
  • Retirement contributions: if you wait to make that tax-deferred contribution annually
  • Charitable contributions

Home Expenses

You need to take care of your dwelling, and these expenses can come up by surprise.

  • Home maintenance
  • Home repairs
  • New appliances, repair or replacement
  • Furniture replacement and additions
  • Bedding, kitchenware, linens
  • Lawn care
  • Garden expenses
  • Tree care and removal
  • Heating oil/propane fill ups
  • Homeowners’ association dues

Vehicle Expenses

There are many expenses associated with a car, truck or motorcycle beyond gas and insurance.

  • Vehicle maintenance
  • Vehicle repairs
  • Tires
  • Vehicle registrations
  • Vehicle inspections

Utility Expenses

  • Pay-as-you go cell phone minutes
  • Replacing your cell phone to update it or when lost or stolen

Education Expenses

  • Tuition bills
  • Class dues
  • School and office supplies
  • School pictures and yearbooks
  • Field trips

Health Expenses

Even if you have a good insurance plan, you can rack up unexpected expenses.

  • Yearly check-ups (medical and vision)
  • Glasses/contacts
  • Medical bills
  • Dental cleanings
  • Dental work
  • Insurance deductibles (enough to cover your largest deductible)

Pet Expenses

Your best friend can also cost you irregular expenses.

  • Pet check-ups, vaccinations, prescriptions
  • Pet grooming
  • Pet licensing
  • Pet boarding
  • Veterinary health insurance
  • Emergency veterinary care

Personal Care Expenses

What you wear and how you look can cost you money.

  • Hair care, nail care
  • Clothing and shoes
  • Jewelry
  • Cosmetics

Leisure Expenses

  • Vacations/Travel, including transportation, lodging, food, admission fees
  • Magazine subscriptions
  • Newspaper subscriptions
  • TV/movie streaming subscriptions (ex: Amazon Prime)
  • Season tickets/Season passes
  • Fine dining events
  • One-time tickets (to concerts, plays, conferences, theme parks, festivals, etc.)
  • Home electronics, computers, mobile devices
  • Hobby supplies
  • Sports activity supplies, clothing, shoes, equipment, fees
  • Membership fees (for clubs, gym, work-related organizations, warehouse clubs, co-ops, etc.)
  • Kids’ activities fees (sports, dance, scouts, after-school clubs, camp, etc.)
  • Gifts
  • Christmas (food, travel, clothes, gifts, decorations, etc.)

If you are not sure how to go about adding these irregular expenses to your monthly budget, here's help: