April 2015 Expenses

Strawberries

Spent time sprucing up our garden this month. Photo credit: The DJ

MuncheryMeal

One of the nearly free meals we took advantage of because we’re classy like that!

We present to you our first monthly report on all our spending. After our last financial update, we decided to track our expenses more granularly and regularly, we also challenged ourselves to reduce our spending. Let’s see how we did.

Category Spending Details
Mortgage $1,793 Mortgage: Principal and Interest
Travel $52 $40 for Airbnb accommodations for an upcoming trip
$12 in fees related to travel rewards credit cards we are playing with
Health & Fitness $272 Dentist and Doctor visit: Everyone and all teeth are healthy
Groceries $193 Impressive if I say so myself!
Restaurants & Take-Out $29 $25 – Eating out once with a friend
$4 – Take Out: used Munchery promotion to enjoy a couple of almost-free meals
Transportation $10 Just gas. Better in the car than in us.. drumroll please
Pets $0  They didn’t eat.. just kidding
Bills & Utilities $136 $9  Electricity (random rebate reduced our bill)
$58 Internet
$68 Water
Heir Care $34 $24 – New to us baby carrier and some larger clothes from consignment sale; planning for the new few months of growth
$10 – replacement cloth diaper fasteners after our free one broke
Shopping $16 $10 Allergy season Kleenex refill
$3 Vegetables for garden because we never got around to starting from seed
$2 Random broom and Cookies!!!!
Total ~$2,535  An almost $2000 / month improvement from our average over the beginning of the year
Spending Minus Mortgage
~$742  This represents our variable spending for the month

We are quite happy with our expenses for the month. We had an 80% savings rate (85% if you count mortgage principal as savings). Two categories that were much lower than previously are Travel and Groceries: this month we did not do any traveling and instead enjoyed the beautiful weather at home (we spent the time making progress on our garden). Grocery expenses were low due to our efforts to clean out our pantry and freezer.

Looking ahead, we have a 10 day trip planned at the end of May and we will most likely need to do a Costco run to replenish our pantry inventory, so we’ll probably see increases in the future.

Tracking our expenses monthly and with more granularity has been beneficial to us. We will continue to review our expenses monthly to assess where we can make improvements (e.g. no more cookies).

The other main thing to note is that we didn’t reduce our expenses by sacrificing or giving anything up. We’re still spending where it counts and what aligns with our values (except maybe the cookies), and are having a blast while doing it and can’t find the time to do everything we’d like to do. Overall I’d say it’s a win-win.

* We will track income, net worth, and progress towards Freedom 35 in our quarterly update

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6 Responses

  1. Wow less than a grand on non-housing expenses. Great work guys!

    • The DJ says:

      Thanks, Fervent Finance! We were quite pleased as well. It’s not the norm, but it does help smooth out the higher spending months.

  2. Nice job! Impressive on every level. And knowing that you don’t feel deprived at all makes it all the more impressive!

    • The DJ says:

      Thanks, onl! I like to keep a budget, while The MC does not think they are necessary. I think it helps to track expenses against a budget to keep spending low. Although, I wonder if our expenses will remain low without a budget…hmm, maybe an experiment waiting to happen.

  3. Hi guys — Hope you’re doing well! We miss reading your posts. 🙂

    • The DJ says:

      Hi! Yes, we were doing traveling this month and neglected the blog a bit. Glad to know we were missed! We plan on getting back to writing in the next few weeks. Looks like I have some catching up to do on your blog! 🙂

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