For the last 12 weeks, I have consistently (yay for me) been tracking all of our spending through my weekly “Where Did The Dough Go” posts. I had planned to do this quarterly, every 13 weeks, but we get paid bi-weekly. It would be too inconsistent with 6 paychecks one quarter and 7 the next, so I opted for almost quarterly (i.e. 12 weeks) reviews. So, below is the spending review for the last 12 weeks—showing our spending, saving, investing and incoming income. The weekly averages are in italics and brackets.
Income $7,881.54 ($656.95)
Pre-tax 401K Contributions $659.32 ($54.94)
Savings $1,057.58 ($88.13)
Groceries $605.48 ($50.45)
Rent & Bills $4,007.50 ($333.95)
Gas $323.31 ($26.94)
Cigarettes $684.64 ($57.05)
Alcohol $241.36 ($20.11)
Dining out $333.06 ($27.75)
Saved 4 car insurance $120.00 ($10.00)
Entertainment $39.97 ($3.33)
Puppy Stuff $62.95 ($5.24)
Other Stuff $299.82 ($24.98)
Roth IRA contributions $60.00 ($5.00)
Betterment contributions $30.00 ($2.50)
B-day stuff/parties $44.10 ($3.67)
Sometimes making a pie chart can be quite beneficial; I knew we were spending a good portion on our rent & bills, but not 51%. That’s crazy, I should try to reduce that or something. The listed income is take-home pay, so it’s after all taxes and deductions including the 401K contributions. I’m surprised and happy that we were able to save so much.
Also, the Roth IRA and Betterment account are fairly new. The biggest ways we were able to save so much was from my decision to send 50% over our Root Income into savings right away and also saving our left-overs.
Top 5 Categories
#1 Rent & Bills
#5 Dining Out
So the top 5 are the places where most of our money goes, now it will be easier to focus on the budget piggies. Let me be clear though, I do NOT want to reduce the amount we are saving—I’m happy with that. The others can use some work. Remember, I do use coupons to help us save money on groceries (not all crazy-like) so that’s why it might be substantially lower than most people spend.
What do you think? Any ideas?