Items You Might Overlook in Your Monthly Budget

During the course of the month, there may be expenditures that come up which were simply not included in your spending plans. We look at some items that more than likely were overlooked.

Last Updated on November 3, 2013 by Brian Habibi

Budgeting is an important tool that helps individuals properly account for their income and utilize their money wisely. In our previous blog, How to Properly Budget Your Monthly Income, we discussed the basics of how to break down a monthly income into bill payments, savings and allowance. However, during the course of the month, there may be expenditures that come up which were simply not included in your spending plans. This is why the monthly budget should always be revisited and updated. Below are some expenditures that more than likely were overlooked.

Donations & Charity

Giving to charity can be a personal decision or a religious obligation.  Either way, if you make a conscious effort to give to others, make sure you are including it in your budget.

Other Travel Expenses

The cost of airfare, accommodation and spending money are the obvious items.  However, other costs such as tourist visas and extra baggage fees should also be accounted for.


Do you have a gym membership or are you part of a local club or organization that requires a membership fee? Include this as part of your monthly budget if this is the case.

Home Maintenance

Ever have a light bulb blow out or an AC start leaking? What about re-painting the walls or replacing a broken showerhead? Even though we know to expect the unexpected, these costs often surprise us.

Car Wash

Many individuals prefer to have their cars washed through the service provided by their building maintenance team. Otherwise, it’s usually an average of AED 20 per wash. This adds up considering the sandy climate in the UAE and the need for the car to be cleaned once a week at a minimum.


If you like reading the morning paper, or your favorite sports or business insight magazine, these expenditures more often than not are overlooked when doing the monthly budget.

Pharmacy Prescriptions

For those with chronic illnesses that require a monthly prescription to be filled, make sure you budget for it.


For animal lovers out there, the family cat or dog need to be included in your spending for their shots, checkups and grooming.

Bank Fees

If you frequently use ATMs of other banks, then you will be racking up usage fees. Other costs include low balance, fund transfer and account maintenance fees.


Parking in Dubai can be costly if you don’t purchase a parking card from the RTA. If you pay for parking daily, make sure this expenditure is included as part of your budget.


Salik fees tend to add up quickly. With the addition of the two Salik gates near Sharjah, it has become increasingly important to budget for the monthly Salik expense.

Religious Taxation

Religious taxation, such as Zakat, is a commonly forgotten item in most people’s budgets.


Gift giving is an important part of most cultures. Whether for Eid, Diwali, Christmas or for any other religious or non-religious occasion, the cost must be taken into account to avoid any surprises in your spending.

Related articles:

The Cost of Settling in the UAE

Top ‘Disguised’ Costs of Living in the UAE 

How to Properly Budget Your Monthly Income