Wednesday, February 5, 2014

January Financial Recap - where did all the money go?

Each month, I attempt to recap how we spent our money, and categories where we were over or under.

Here are the highlights (& lowlights from January):

Income (note that this doesn't include retirement, charitable donations, or healthcare, all of which is deducted automatically before we ever see the money):
Standard pay - $21,700
Bonus pay - $8,400
Total income for January = $30,100

We were at or below spending targets in the following categories:

  • Boys (general bucket category) 
  • Boys clothes
  • Boys college
  • Boys lessons
  • Childcare (saved cash in December to pay for January's date night)
  • Cleaning (the cleaner was on vacation, so we cleaned & saved $180)
  • Gas
  • Gifts
  • Health
  • Insurance
  • My clothes
  • Rent
  • Liquor
  • Vacation mortgage
  • M's clothes
  • Personal
  • Seattle house utilities
Areas where we were over our spending:
  • Boys birthdays. Over by $7. Bought both boys a present (an organizer for their Rainbow Loom bands, which have taken over my house.) :-)
  • Car - over by $967. :-( Major repair needed on my car, which is 9 years old.
  • Dining out - over by $204, mostly due to my work trip. I had no idea I would have to pay for my own meals. Groan.
  • Dry cleaning - over by $19. We've primarily switched to Dryel, and had to restock our supply.
  • Entertainment - over by $90. We added this category for 2014, and ended up going on a day trip to Monterey. We'll balance this out by not doing anything similar in February.
  • Groceries - over by $15. So close!
  • House - over by $120. These were for our legal documents. Doesn't really belong in this category, but this is my "placeholder" category. ;-)
  • San Francisco utilities - over by $109. The insulation in this house sucks big time, and the windows don't even seal. On "cold" nights, the heat runs forever.
  • Vacation house utilities - over by $400. We have a yearly pay for a handyman/watch service that checks on our property weekly. Critical since we're not in the area.
  • Toiletries - over by $56. We were out of everything. Hopefully we're stocked up & can lower this substantially in the next few months.
  • Travel - over by $170. I purchased my mom's ticket to fly out and watch the boys in April.
  • Seattle house mortgage - over by $17,748. Not really. ;-) We transferred $15,000 from savings to our HELOC, to reduce our interest. Our December payment also cleared in January, so two payments cleared during the same month. 

In total, we spent $20,662 (removing the $15,000 transfer, as that's mostly just shuffling money around). Our planned expenses were $19,098, so we were over by $1,600. We average out all of our yearly totals, so there are some totals that don't make sense on a monthly scale. In general, the only anomaly that concerns me for our yearly budget is the car expense of $1167. That will definitely put a dent in our yearly budget. 

How did you do with your January spending? Are you on track? If not, how will you adjust your spending to get back on track? 


  1. I think you did good. reducing your mortgage always feels nice, right? :)

  2. I just calculated our January spending. I didn't have any goals to start the month with and we haven't been tracking - so not a lot of comparisons to make right now.

    I still can't believe you had to pay for all your own meals on a work trip! No reimbursement??!! I would be so irritated.

  3. That’s a lot of expenses. It’s difficult to handle all of this, but looking at the areas that you’re covered with like car major repair, birthdays, utilities, and more; it’s relieving. Just keep your spirit up, and for sure things will get better soon.