Ok, so the year has gotten off to a bit of a rough start on the spending front.
The good news is that my income for the first 3 months of the year (including post-tax paychecks and pre-tax 401k contributions) has been $34,495. So, my $13,675 of spending for 1/4 of the year doesn’t seem that bad when I’ve saved $20.8k thus far.
*Also, theoretically, if I receive my stock at the end of the year, I could have an extra ~ $4000 of savings per month which is significant (and makes my bad spending choices look slightly less bad?)
But I can do better than that.
Rent is fixed, so nothing I can do about that being my biggest cost per month (my 50% of our one bedroom… I should enjoy this “cheap” rent while it lasts.)
Food… we still spend too much on food, but I’m eating healthier so feel good about that. When baby arrives, I do want to see how to decrease monthly meal costs. Need to cut back on Blue Apron for a while… we really haven’t gone out to eat that much.
Travel… that was a big cost first quarter, but it includes dragging my husband along on a work trip to a pretty cool location (I said I’d pay and it was last minute so the flight was like $750 roundtrip but so worth it) and also it includes my and my husband’s flights to my cousin’s wedding coming up this June (I don’t make him pay to go to weddings of my friends and family!) So, travel is costing a lot and will probably continue to cost a lot if I’m going to bring baby to east coast to visit family. The June flights are paid for but none of the hotel or other costs are yet, so next quarter travel costs won’t completely drop. They should be cheaper over the summer when baby is on the way and brand new though because – where am I going?
Shopping… not sure how I spent over $1600 on shopping (not including maternity clothes and baby items) — eeks. I really though I haven’t spent that much but it just adds up. Ok, so it was really about $300 for web hosting (I decided to start another blog and promptly failed to start it, oops.) And $400 for some awesome noise-cancelling headphones that I needed to survive my open office at work. So, after those things, it’s $600 on shopping which is still too much but more understandable. I have $200 of clothes to return to REI when I get around it, leaving a much more reasonable $400 of shopping spend over 3 months. Granted, this includes a few returns to Sephora so… ok, maybe it was $600 in spend on shopping. The web hosting was bad, but it’s not a recurring charge, at least not for 3 more years.
Health – $837. Includes a $221 doctor’s bill that I had to pay because my COBRA insurance got f’d and my “maxed out for the year” deductible didn’t carry over. $106 for a contact exam. Then, the other biggest spent here is my prenatal fitness classes (I’ve requested my husband split costs for maternity clothes as I feel it’s unfair I should have to pay for that entirely on my own, but the prenatal fitness classes are more of a choice so I cover them out of this budget.)
Auto – $770 – auto insurance $65 /month apparently plus $220 car registration plus gas. Not much I can do about these costs except take public transit, but that won’t be that much cheaper since it drops me off no where near my office.
Maternity – $629 – this is half of what I’ve spent on maternity clothes and other items for baby thus far (mostly maternity clothes) and one $100 3d ultrasound of baby. Honestly, a lot of this was new bras. I’m still not sure how I spent so much here since I went in saying I’m not to spend that much on clothes I’m going to wear for nine months or less. Oops. I still feel like I have NOTHING to wear. And I do need a dress for the June wedding…
Gifts – $306 – one husband’s birthday dinner plus a few small gifts. Really not bad. Probably should give people more gifts.
Fees – $121 – mostly an annual CC membership fee. Two tiny finance charges on CC ($15 total) because I was stupid and put too many work charges on there and forgot to do my expenses. Never again.
Personal care – $75 – haircut.
April is looking worse than other months to date… yikes.
|Category||20 Days||April Expected|
Darn, I’m not doing that well on the frugality front. And we still haven’t purchased a new couch or other much-needed furnishings for our apartment. I really don’t know how I spend this much money. I can’t be spending $5000 a month. Yes, that’s still below the $7000 in after-tax take home pay I receive, but there’s no excuse to be spending $5k a month right now. Some things seem worth it — (the personal care $244 was a prenatal massage and membership for discount massages for the rest of my pregnancy.) The entertainment is to a concert this July that will probably be the last concert I go to in a long time, and it’s a gift for my husband. Food I’m still spending too much on.
Really, I should be spending no more than $3500 a month on EVERYTHING.
This would be a good budget to target for May. I’ll be tracking to it here as I’d like to really figure out how to create and STICK TO a budget before baby comes: