A blog about dividend investing and financial independence for a person supporting a 7 person family on one income. My goal is to be retired at age 55 to pursue other passions in life and rely on a passive income stream generated from dividends.
Saturday, April 16, 2016
March 2016 Budget and Savings
Sure March is still
technically winter but it is one of my favorite months. Not only is it a great month for dividends
but it is also usually when I get my tax refund. Maybe next year I will also get to include
any raises or bonus from my new job I started this year.
Looking at my expenses
for the month it was a good month on that end as well. My total needs were kept under budget with
just a few minor hiccups. The first
hiccup was groceries. $156 over budget
there. Again depending on where the
first or last week of shopping lands it bumps that months budget by an extra
week (to 5) or lessens it to 3 weeks. I don't sweat this category as it evens out over the year.
The second bump was in
the Guilt Free Spending Money or wants category. I blew over my budget by a good $750! Almost $400 of that went to pay off money I
owed to my daughters fund raiser. The
cash given to me when I sold the candy bars was pocketed and used to eat out
and other miscellaneous wants. This was
a bad idea and I should have saved it so it wouldn't have hit my budget in the
end. I think I did
something similar last year and really need put the cash into the bank so
it can be tracked.
The second item in
this category was a whopping (don't laugh) $200 towards chocolate. My wife is a stay at home mom and chocolate
is her allowance. We went to tour a
chocolate factory with the kids over spring break and stocked up on their
chocolates. Also after Easter another
chocolate maker in the area cuts their prices in half so we stocked up to last
us through the summer. The third largest
expense was $100 to dining out and going to a home and garden expo.
I am happy to say even
with my over the budget blowout on wants I was still able to save 59% of my
income for the month. This income was
mostly from my tax refund. If I take a look
at just my basic living expenses vs. last year I am happy that the trend is now
going down for March.
With the extra savings
I was able to fund all of my savings goals this month and even put some extra
into them since I missed funding them in January. There was even a few bucks left over for
investing so I will be on the lookout for an April purchase.
Some months do get
away from me regarding the GFSM category (wants). I still find it extremely hard to put a hard
stop on the spending once I hit my budget limit. I even bumped that line item in the budget by
$50 and still find myself exceeding it regularly. I highly suggest to anyone
who has the same problem to cut up your credit cards and go to a cash only
system. I have not yet mainly because I
am still able to save even though I blow the budget. I am not saving enough yet so I need to
buckle down some more.
How was your month?
I hope the tax fairy was kind to you and deposited some cash instead of