Day one of keeping our new budget, and we’ve already spent $723.96. Yep, we’re off to a dandy start. That leaves us $27,876.04 to spend for the rest of the entire year. Is that math right? Yeah, that’s right.
Ok, so $500 of that is rent, and the rest is utilities for last month, which were higher than budget, but I think it will level out a little better next month. We didn’t actually spend money on anything other than fixed expenses. Nothing to be done about that.
In case anyone out there is thinking, ok, maybe these “Wonders” can keep a budget that tight, but for me and my family, that’s impossible, let me tell you what we spent last year: $60,000. Last year all of our expenses totaled $60,000.
I’m getting these numbers from Mint, which we’ve been using for a few years now. I’ve never quite trusted it entirely, because if we use cash, there’s no record of it, and if I buy something for work and get reimbursed with cash, that does get added to the record. This is part of the reason we’ve decided to keep meticulous track of our spending this year. So we can actually see what we’re spending. Little trivia for you: no one in the United States of America keeps track of their expenses. This is based on my talking to somewhere between three and five people and having them all tell me they don’t track their spending and have no idea where their money goes. So it’s a small sample, but I think it’s accurate.
Assuming we actually spent $60,000 last year, we’re planning to cut our spending in half this year. And it’s not like we were recklessly spending last year. So, unless you’re one of those crazy rich people who spend a million dollars a year on caviar and champagne, who has more than a couple Birkin Bags, can afford name brand mac ‘n cheese and uses hundred dollar bills instead of torn up paper grocery bags to wipe your bottom, you can probably relate.
WaterSmart is trying to save water. They make software that makes it easier to see what your neighborhood spends on water on average. This way you can see if you use more or less water than the average. Turns out, this software has proven to save 5% on water over the first six months. Just by spreading awareness. I think money could work the same way. I really don’t know how much the average person spends on food or rent or anything. It’s a little too taboo to talk about money in our society. But here you go. Here I’ve laid out what we plan to spend. I’ve told you what we spent last year (to the best of my knowledge) and this year I’ll break it all down to the penny. Hopefully that encourages someone else to take a closer look at their spending.
I’ll try not to bog down my posts with too many digits, decimals and dollar signs. You know where to find the budget if you want the nitty gritty, and some posts will be technical, but I’ll still post about my own crazy thoughts and concerns regarding minimalism and whether or not we’re screwing up our children‘s lives. You know, the normal things parents worry about.
Let’s do this 2016!