Author Topic: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022  (Read 1543 times)

oneday

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Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« on: March 12, 2022, 03:48:53 PM »
Continuing the tradition of the last 3 years (although I've participated only in the last 2 years), welcome everyone to the Hold Yourself Openly Accountable thread for 2022. Yes, it's a little late getting started. But there's plenty of year left for Accountability!

What is this thread all about? From the 2019 intro: "[The] goal is at a minimum to list total spending for the end of each month. We can break it down into as little or as much detail as we feel comfortable with. Can add savings rate if we want, tips, tricks, advice, etc. If you donít want to list numbers, could just do savings rate."

So come on in, find a comfy seat and Hold Yourself Accountable in 2022.


2019 thread
2020 thread
2021 thread

oneday

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2022, 04:01:07 PM »
I'm going to continue to track the same three categories monthly, as they remain my highest spending. The car and the cat are generally the next two highest expenses, but they are lumpy and have far less of a discretionary component.


              | Entertain  |Restaurants  | Groceries  |   Total    |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
DEC 2019      | $      358 | $       309 | $      281 | $     3553 |
AVG 2020      | $      102 | $       106 | $      226 | $     3419 |
AVG 2021      | $       92 | $       193 | $      180 | $     3935 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
JAN 2022      | $       51 | $       298 | $      140 | $     2145 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
FEB 2022      | $       10 | $       251 | $      103 | $     2086 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
YTD AVG       | $       31 | $       275 | $      122 | $     1761 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|



Comparing to 2021 average

It would appear that groceries are finally becoming reasonable. I am participating in a $10/week grocery challenge this year (sporadically) and this is helping remind me that just because it looks good in the store does not mean I should take it home! I can only eat so much.

And speaking of eating...lots of eating out for Reasons. That Reason has disappeared, so should see a drop, but maybe not till March, as there was a lot of eating out during the move.

Biggest expense these last two months was the move at $710. It's expensive having heavy furniture. Worth it, but I'd rather not pay for this again anytime soon.

Next I would say rent, even though I didn't pay at the old place. That landlord has promised to return my deposit, but he is sketchy so until it happens, I consider rent effectively double paid.

Gas was $156, about double what it usually is due to the driving back and forth between the two places. The movers only took the largest & heaviest furniture, plus a limited amount of boxed items.

Mr. Kitty had expenses of $187 over the two months, but I have a year's supply of flea medicine at a bit of a discount for bulk buy.

Upcoming I expect to pay:
a bit for setting-up-house expenses (wood refinishing, storage solutions)
a bit more on personal expenses as the move will no longer suck up all my free time
rent is going up $400 and utilities will go up as well (no more solar panels; have to pay for water here)

Of course will try to apply Mustachian principles to keep those as low as possible. I have already spotted a few thrift stores that might supply some of the storage needs.

kittykat

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2022, 08:45:16 PM »

              |  Fun Out  | Restaurants | Groceries  |   Shopping   |     Total   |
              |-----------|-------------|------------|--------------|-------------|
DEC 2019      | $      26 | $       682 | $      634 | $      3,473 | $     4,815 |
AVG 2020      | $      42 | $       227 | $      948 | $        953 | $     2,302 |
AVG 2021      | $     230 | $     1,024 | $    1,048 | $      1,784 | $     4,086 |

              |-----------|-------------|------------|--------------|-------------|
JAN 2022      | $     609 | $     1,097 | $    1,398 | $      1,337 | $     4,441 |
FEB 2022      | $       0 | $       828 | $      524 | $      1,422 | $     2,774 |

              |-----------|-------------|------------|--------------|-------------|


This is mostly just self-flagellation at this point, but here we go 2022. And before we get too excited about my lower February numbers, it's because I was on vacation for a week and our restaurant charges went to room charge and I don't feel like combing through that bill to find out my restaurant spend... so we'll pretend I ate a lot less that month.

oneday

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2022, 12:18:23 PM »
@kittykat no self flagellation necessary! This is your spending...own it :) Will be interesting to see where you end up for 2022, especially compared to 2021 which was a strange year. Not as strange as 2020, but still...

oneday

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2022, 03:42:18 PM »
It's time for what is turning into the BI-MONTHLY BUDGET UPDATE


              | Entertain  |Restaurants  | Groceries  |   Total    |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
DEC 2019      | $      358 | $       309 | $      281 | $     3553 |
AVG 2020      | $      102 | $       106 | $      226 | $     3419 |
AVG 2021      | $       92 | $       193 | $      280 | $     3935 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
JAN 2022      | $       51 | $       298 | $      140 | $     2145 |
FEB 2022      | $       10 | $       251 | $      103 | $     2086 |
MAR 2022      | $       46 | $       150 | $      210 | $     1303 |
APR 2022      | $      146 | $       263 | $      225 | $     3774 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
YTD AVG       | $       63 | $       241 | $      170 | $     2327 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|


March was mostly right on target, with groceries a little high since I was focusing more on moving/settling in than optimizing each and every trip. I'm OK with that. The overall total was low because of a return of deposit of prior rental and federal tax refund. Nothing else really notable there. I am satisfied with March.

April, however. Whew! Biggest expense was a major auto service for $430. Necessary, but pricy. Glad I'm driving less these days so that service costs are lower/stretched over more time.

Next two biggest expenses were restaurants and groceries (listed above). Together they exceed the auto expense by about $60. Don't want to do that every month! There is room for some eating out, but the part that is out of hand is eating out on my own; a lot of this is poor planning and not taking a snack along. Groceries had two big Costco stock ups (different things), but there is still a lot of food in the house, so I will go back to aiming for sub $10 grocery weeks for a bit to get value from those things.

Entertainment jumped quite a bit, however I anticipated this would increase after settling in. $75 was for water aerobics class (10 weeks), $20 for an app I use daily (annual subscription) and $38 for dry cleaners for a heavy wool blanket (will not need cleaning for 1+ years). These costs will not be repeated monthly, so that's nice.

Next was gas at $98 - visit to Mom, 3 hours driving each way. OK.

But the most interesting/unusual was $74 in clothing...the much-debated sweater (which I've been wearing the heck out of) and the swim suit. Both purchases were for reasonable amounts, both fill a hole in my wardrobe rather than being superfluous, and both are being used regularly. A non-routine "investment" that is already paying happiness dividends.

Kinda glad I didn't look at March's expenses a month ago. Not much was there! I might have noticed that groceries were getting out of hand, but might have also just thought it was rebounding from the low month.  In any case, the food is still in the pantry; I can get my money's worth in the coming weeks while keeping current spending low. So no real harm.

alcon835

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2022, 10:50:26 AM »
Not a lot of folks on this thread this year :(

sadiesortsitout

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2022, 11:51:41 AM »
Missed this thread before, but I have just started this in August in my journal. I'll join in here for the rest of the year!

oneday

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #7 on: August 27, 2022, 07:59:17 PM »
@alcon835 you are right. Even I abandoned it!

@sadiesortsitout if you post here, I will too. Anyone else is welcome to join or re-join as we slide along the second half of the year.

Dicey

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2022, 08:56:56 PM »
@oneday, did your LL return your deposit?

sadiesortsitout

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2022, 07:19:46 AM »
I'll post a full breakdown at the end of August. Spending for the month is currently $1,832.23. Gotta buy cat food and maybe gas this week, but otherwise I should be done for the month.

I wouldn't have had to buy cat food, but the dog broke into the cat food bucket and feasted, and then the cats joined in, the rascals. Wiped out about two weeks worth.

oneday

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2022, 10:39:05 AM »
@oneday, did your LL return your deposit?

@Dicey Yeah, finally, after a bit of tense moments and a few reminders. I was seriously worried that I'd have to take him to small claims court.

Funny timing for you to ask this question! I have been in a conversation with Prior Roommate re: deposit return, because she has bought a house & will be leaving the apartment soon. She's freaking out about getting her deposit returned (which I remember well from my first apartment). So I've done my best to reassure her, but I think until she goes through it she can't fully calm that anxiety. Her land lord is a corporation, so I feel like they should know the law well and will follow it. It's even written into my copy of the lease (but she's signed a different one since I moved out; it's possible but unlikely that the language has changed).


@sadiesortsitout rascals indeed! If that happened here, I'm not sure there would be any food left...and I'm sure the cat would be sick. Hope your beasts are feeling OK and you can stomach (haha) replacing their mischief.

Does your spending include housing? If so, that is impressively low. Well, I guess it's impressive either way!

sadiesortsitout

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2022, 04:05:28 PM »

@sadiesortsitout rascals indeed! If that happened here, I'm not sure there would be any food left...and I'm sure the cat would be sick. Hope your beasts are feeling OK and you can stomach (haha) replacing their mischief.

Does your spending include housing? If so, that is impressively low. Well, I guess it's impressive either way!

It does include housing-- I'm in a very LCOL area, bought a very small house at a very good price, in an already insanely cheap market. My mortgage payment is just under $525. It has needed a lot of work, though. 

I had spending about this low last January, but it's been much higher the rest of the year-- it was about double that number last month. And that number doesn't include the $6122 I just spent having the house re-plumbed.

oneday

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #12 on: September 03, 2022, 12:19:17 AM »
And now, this: NON-REGULAR BUT RECURRING BUDGET UPDATE!



              | Entertain  | Restaurants | Groceries  |   Total    |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
DEC 2019      | $      358 | $       309 | $      281 | $     3553 |
AVG 2020      | $      102 | $       106 | $      226 | $     3419 |
AVG 2021      | $       92 | $       193 | $      280 | $     3935 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|
JAN 2022      | $       51 | $       298 | $      140 | $     2145 |
FEB 2022      | $       10 | $       251 | $      103 | $     2086 |
MAR 2022      | $       46 | $       150 | $      210 | $     1303 |
APR 2022      | $      146 | $       263 | $      225 | $     3774 |
MAY 2022      | $      178 | $       359 | $      164 | $     4614 |
JUN 2022      | $     2650 | $       224 | $      206 | $     6310 |
JUL 2022      | $       25 | $       254 | $      217 | $     5277 |
AUG 2022      | $      110 | $       191 | $      448 | $     4090 |
YTD AVG       | $      402 | $       249 | $      214 | $     3700 |
              |------------|-------------|------------|------------|


Entertainment came in right on the forecasted budget, so ho hum.

Restaurants were as low as they have been in MONTHS. I don't even know how. But it's nice!

Groceries looks higher than it is because I bought $150 gift card for manufactured spend purposes (I'll probably do something similar this month), but still without that it's almost $300. I know there was a stock up on a sale item at Costco that I wasn't expecting. I shopped at Safeway (a more expensive store) more than usual. I'm working on eating down my pantry, not building it up, and it *seems* like I'm only buying perishables, but clearly that's not the case (or is it just inflation now?). Will continue eating down and refilling only perishables, using the gift card. September should be dramatically lower.

Overall spending is up. I'm not even sure why or how. Rent + utilities at this new place are $250 higher, but that started back in March, and the jump up in spending is way more than just that. Will have to dig into the numbers to see what's going on. Must be a lot of little purchases, because nothing mid-sized is jumping out. I did spend $$$ on the estate plan and auto a/c repair in June and July, but that doesn't seem to be all of it, either. Not sure how much I should worry, as savings rate is pretty good still.


Edited to fix table format
« Last Edit: September 03, 2022, 02:05:07 PM by oneday »

sadiesortsitout

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #13 on: September 03, 2022, 09:38:33 AM »
August breakdown:

Total spending:   $2,346
Home:               $715.36    Mortgage, a little bit of the plumbing bill, a $75 dresser on Marketplace
Health:              $404.79    Health Insurance plus thyroid pills
Bills & Utilities:   $400.04    Trash, internet, water, sewer, gas, electric
Food:                 $286.46    Just food
Non-food:          $265.40    Dog & cat food, 3 months cat medicine
Gas:                  $55.97      The stupidest expense. I live three miles from work, a mile and a half from an Aldi, and I own something like six bikes?
Personal care:    $13.60      Makeup, I think?
Fees:                 $4.38        Stupid 401k fees I need to figure out
Loan payment:   $200         Paid on HELOC

Notes:
-Not included: $6,000 cost to re-plumb drain lines, borrowed on HELOC.
-The cat medicine was $150 and was supposed to ship in September, but came and billed early.
-This was a five-week grocery month and I went a little crazy on my last grocery run of the month and spent $75 instead of my budget of $50, but things had gotten a bit thin in the pantry and I am now feeling well-supplied.
-The dresser was a no-no for Austerity August, but I was weak.

Scramblin Rover

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2023, 06:12:57 PM »
It seems like this thread has kind of died, but I thought I'd check back in on how my annual spending went. Overall, things were pretty much where I wanted them to be, as a decrease in housing costs made up for some softness in other areas.

CategoryAnnual spendingAvg monthly spendingTarget monthly spendingNotes
Housing114819571115I ended up having more roommates this year than I had planned, which made for a very favorable year in my biggest expense category.
     Rent     10089     841     1000
     Utilities     1224     102     100
     Renters insurance     180     14     15
Food/
household goods
4058338350
     Groceries/
household goods
     2957     248     300
     Restaurants     1082     90     50This category was bracing. A contributor to the high costs here was a tendency to go out to eat when I wasn't at my house for meals (for instance, when traveling or doing outdoor trips). This is something I'll work on.
Transportation3289274184
     Gas     843     70     58
     Car insurance     484     40     44
     Car maintenance     1555     130     42Unfortunately, a significant brake repair (combined with generally high costs for all things auto) caused me to greatly exceed my target here. 
     Bicycle expenses     194     16     25
     Car tabs     145     12     15
     Public transit fares     62     5     0I thought I could get a free transit pass through work, but that was wrong. Oh well.
Recreation1840153125
     Avalanche safety course     530     44     N/AI just can't help myself, apparently.
     Ski expenses     409     34     N/A
     Rock climbing expenses     308     26     N/A
     Other recreation expenses     591     49     N/AThis was a big category this year, and definitely something I'm keeping an eye on.
Travel134311283Everything was opened up for the most part this year, and I did more travel than I'd expected (and more than during the pandemic). It was great, and I don't particularly see the need to try to trim this down. Food costs because of eating out during travel are a concern (although I assigned them to the food category instead of here).
     Airfare     675     56     N/A
     Ground transportation     280     23     N/ATrains, buses, subways, Ubers, etc.
     Lodging     326     27     N/A
     Touristy activities     62     5     N/A
Cell phone/TV5714825There are a few reasons for the high spending here, but a lot of it is that I prepaid for a bunch of next year's service to get the best rate, making this number a little bit misleading.
Charitable giving100083160I had never donated money before, and I enjoyed the process of identifying how and where to give. Although I'd love to donate more in the future when I am in a stronger financial position, for now my goal was just to build a habit of giving, and it was a great feeling to achieve that.
Misc/Other4954142
Total2407820072083

And, here are my targets for 2023:
CategoryAnnual
spending
Avg
monthly
spending
Notes
Housing125001042
     Rent     11000     917
     Utilities     1320     110
     Renters insurance     180     15
Food/
household goods
3900325
     Groceries/
household goods
     3100     258
     Restaurants     800     77
Transportation2775232
     Gas     750     63
     Car insurance     500     42
     Car maintenance     1000     83 
     Bicycle expenses     300     25
     Car tabs     175     15
     Public transit fares     50     4
Recreation1500125
Travel1500125
Cell phone/TV36030
Charitable giving100083
Misc/Other50042
Total240352003

Hope everyone else's years went well too. I'll be sure to check back in at the end of 2023 to see how I did compared to my targets.

oneday

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2023, 10:09:10 PM »
@Scramblin Rover you did well flexing your spending to accommodate circumstances and preferences.


As @alcon835 noted upthread, the interest in this waned over the year. But today is a new day. Is anyone else interested in this for 2023? This question is for anyone in general, not just those who participated in 2022.

Scramblin Rover

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Re: Hold Yourself Openly Accountable for Your Spending in 2022
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2023, 09:42:24 AM »
Thanks @oneday! I am glad that you made this thread, even though I only popped in at the end of the year. I won't be much help for a 2023 thread, since I usually only tally up all my spending at the end of each year, but I am impressed by those of you who go through that process every month.

 

Wow, a phone plan for fifteen bucks!