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Monday, January 30, 2012

The Money Monk's Spending and Saving for January

One of the major reasons I started this site was to have some accountability for my spending and saving habits and a catalog of sorts to compare various months and years to chart progress.

January was going to be the first month where I cataloged my finances, and I recorded all my spending and income. However, I realized I did it in an awkward and potentially incorrect way.

For things like mortgage, which is actually about $900, I counted it as $450 since my girlfriend lives with me and pays half. I did this with most of the other bills too.

What I should have done is count the bills in their totality as an expense, and then counted her 'rent' as income. That will give me a more clear and realistic picture of my situation. So that is what I will do from now on, and I will Post the results for February since I messed up on January and I don't feel like going back and recalculating everything for this past month.

What I will say however, is that I spent WAY too much on food this month, mostly eating out. Luckily this is abnormal, but the amount I spent was still appalling. About half of the restaurant spending was a result of two dinners that I attended as result of special occasions, Birthdays, etc. So I felt bad about declining. I will have to decide what to do about these situations in the future. Another large chunk was a result of failing to prepare meals for a weekend away. So with these eliminated Feb should be a better month for food spending.

I also spent more than usual on groceries, because I have been focusing on eating very clean, with a mostly paleo diet. I will have to readjust the things I am buying and stick with the less expensive versions because I am not willing to continue to spend as much as I have this month on food, even aside from restaurants. It was way too much.

The good news is I didn't spend almost ANY money on consumer goods. No clothes, no toiletries, no DVDs, nothing. So overall my spending wasn't bad, but I need to get it even lower. I don't have a high income so I need to save as large a percentage of it as possible.

-The Money Monk

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