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General Discussion => Throw Down the Gauntlet => Topic started by: forummm on August 26, 2015, 09:16:11 AM

Title: Savetember
Post by: forummm on August 26, 2015, 09:16:11 AM
After having a frugally fantastic No Buy July, and an august August marked by majestic dignity and grandeur, we're gearing up for Savetember. I think we'll set a record in August for our largest month of savings (in a month with only 2 paydays). I think we can beat our August savings total in Savetember. Who else is in?

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/no-buy-july/
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/august-august/
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on August 26, 2015, 09:34:21 AM
I am 110% in! So far August has been our lowest month EVER. By far. Our expenses are going to clock in at $1,200 less than our previous "normal". DH is as excited as I am (thanks to a well timed market correction, he is VERY on board with our savings goals now!). We lived on 50% of take home pay. We're committed to keep it rolling into September. (Hoping I get employed, so we'll be living on an even lower % of take home!)

We have a couple planned expenses, but those are on a list and we aren't going to veer from that. (Ex- he starts Masters classes, so any books or fees, and we're going to do one meal out this month. If I get hired, I will have some scrubs to buy)

What I will try NOT to spend on:
My mom's bday is this month. I will try to do purchase-free gifting.
We will continue to not buy alcohol. This will be much harder this month, as our "stores" are running out...
Except for our one planned taco adventure, we are committed to not going out to eat
Continuing with our "no clothes or shoes" unless a work item needs replacing
We will be eating game and fish from our freezer, and avoiding any easy grocery store meats like pork or ground beef or chicken

That's all I can think of right now. Here's to keeping momentum!!!!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: iknowiyam on August 26, 2015, 10:03:32 AM
We need this after last month... will see if DH is on board for Savetember.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on August 26, 2015, 10:48:33 AM
Count me in!

There is extra food in the house because of a case lot sale and the final weeks of my CSA. Utilities will be cheap because of low usage in late summer. The weather should still be good for spending time outdoors.

I need to sort out clothes for the fall, stock up on a couple of harvest items and do some work on the house in preparation for winter. Can't wait to see how much can be done for how little.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: velocistar237 on August 26, 2015, 10:59:12 AM
Don't know how August went yet (I'm in the don't-look-at-Mint challenge), but I think it was pretty good. I'm in for Savetember. Hoping to clean out the closets and get some cash, try out canning, and avoid those tempting purchases that come up every once in a while. I do have some home projects I'm planning to tackle, though, and that could cost a bit. We'll see!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: TGod on August 26, 2015, 11:09:51 AM
I'm in! Our August was disgusting, we took a family road trip vacation to the US, watching the Loonie's value drop every day.  So everything we spent was increased by 30%. Technically we have spent all of September's food budget already.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Ozapftis on August 26, 2015, 11:49:22 AM
The way you renamed the months to make them sound mustachian is funny. I like.
Do you have an altered name made up for every month of the year? If not yet, then Savetember should be followed by Socktober.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on August 26, 2015, 12:46:14 PM
The way you renamed the months to make them sound mustachian is funny. I like.
Do you have an altered name made up for every month of the year? If not yet, then Savetember should be followed by Socktober.

I hadn't settled on October's yet, but I am looking forward to Nobuyvember.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: TheBuddha on August 26, 2015, 01:09:55 PM
Challenge accepted!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on August 27, 2015, 10:50:56 AM
Forummm,

When you tally for your month, I see you are prorating your insurance and your property tax expenses. Do you actually set aside the money each month? And do you base this on what you paid last time, or what you estimate you will pay next time?

Insurance has gone crazy in my part of the world the last couple of years because of two different natural disasters that had insurance companies paying out huge numbers of claims. So, I figure out each January what annual bills I am going to pay and how I will pay them, and I don't worry about it monthly. But I am curious about how you think about it.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Andrew928 on August 27, 2015, 11:38:55 AM
I'm up for trying to save 40% this month as I will be going on a trip in nobuyvember.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: nereo on August 27, 2015, 11:40:43 AM
I'm in... but remember, the financial world is going to collapse in September (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/mustachianism-around-the-web/financial-doom-is-coming-in-september-anyone-believe-this/msg746206/#msg746206) anyway.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on August 27, 2015, 11:50:04 AM
Forummm,

When you tally for your month, I see you are prorating your insurance and your property tax expenses. Do you actually set aside the money each month? And do you base this on what you paid last time, or what you estimate you will pay next time?

Insurance has gone crazy in my part of the world the last couple of years because of two different natural disasters that had insurance companies paying out huge numbers of claims. So, I figure out each January what annual bills I am going to pay and how I will pay them, and I don't worry about it monthly. But I am curious about how you think about it.

Whenever I get the bill for the renewal, I pay it all at once (it's cheaper that way) but then adjust my monthly amount for spending tracking purposes. So it's reflecting what it actually costs me that month to have the insurance/house.

For example, my auto policy just renewed this month and I updated the amount it costs on a monthly basis. I didn't count the full 6-month premium in this month's spending--just a month's worth of it. If I were to cancel the policy I would get a refund for the prorated portion of the premium I paid. And it throws off the numbers too much to have a constant expense like that be booked under a single month.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on August 27, 2015, 02:17:10 PM
That's interesting. I have focused more on what I'm going to pay next time, but I think you are right that that doesn't reflect what it is costing me today.

You are lucky to have six-month premiums. Ours are twelve-months only, though the age and model of my vehicle make it pretty inexpensive.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on August 27, 2015, 02:22:47 PM
After having a frugally fantastic No Buy July, and an august August marked by majestic dignity and grandeur, we're gearing up for Savetember. I think we'll set a record in August for our largest month of savings (in a month with only 2 paydays). I think we can beat our August savings total in Savetember. Who else is in?

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/no-buy-july/
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/august-august/

I'm In!

forummm, you are hilarious. "Savetember"...that's a hoot.

July was good, August was GREAT, capped off by the mini-market-dip this past week, not only did I get more saved this August than ever before (We made our 50% target), I got some really nice leverage in the market dip in Vanguard Roth IRA.

Some calculations have shown me that I need to go higher in my pre-tax to make my yearly allowed 21% (15 + Catch Up) because I missed a little bit in the first quarter of 2015. So pre-tax gets the emphasis for Savetember!

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on August 27, 2015, 03:10:35 PM
Jumping onboard for this gauntlet!
Great name!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: TMM on August 27, 2015, 04:04:01 PM
I'm in, spent a fortune in August and seriously need to regroup.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Butterfingers on August 28, 2015, 04:17:06 AM
The way you renamed the months to make them sound mustachian is funny. I like.
Do you have an altered name made up for every month of the year? If not yet, then Savetember should be followed by Socktober.

I hadn't settled on October's yet, but I am looking forward to Nobuyvember.

How about:
Sober October (both in booze and in spending)
Stocktober (investing)
Locktober (lock down spending tight)
Stoptober (give up something financially/physically/emotionally damaging)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Butterfingers on August 28, 2015, 04:19:06 AM
Oh and I'm in. Beat monthly savings record for our current circumstances (shouldn't be hard!).
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on August 28, 2015, 06:10:06 AM
The way you renamed the months to make them sound mustachian is funny. I like.
Do you have an altered name made up for every month of the year? If not yet, then Savetember should be followed by Socktober.

I hadn't settled on October's yet, but I am looking forward to Nobuyvember.

How about:
Sober October (both in booze and in spending)
Stocktober (investing)
Locktober (lock down spending tight)
Stoptober (give up something financially/physically/emotionally damaging)

Oooh, I like Stocktober--since that's where my savings go.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: CmFtns on August 28, 2015, 08:27:34 AM
I'm in for the challenge. I'll only do Rent Utilities Groceries and try to keep 2nd two lower than usual
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: asauer on August 28, 2015, 01:18:58 PM
I'm in!  Our August was terrible.  The beginning of kids and hubs sports came with lots of $.  Need to get back to running a tight ship.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: SandyBoxx on August 28, 2015, 01:57:53 PM
I'm in! Our August was disgusting, we took a family road trip vacation to the US, watching the Loonie's value drop every day.  So everything we spent was increased by 30%. Technically we have spent all of September's food budget already.

This was us this summer as well.  Our "cheap" family camping roadtrip into Montana ended up being quite costly because of the dollar (not to mention trying to hide out from the 40 degree weather, and the A/C on our truck quit on day 2.)  Ah, making memories!

Anyhow, we are in on the challenge - our July and August are almost always terrible months.  Booze consumption goes way up, lots of guests = more groceries, and more fuel going out to explore the Nat'l parks while the weather is good.  If we cannot do better than our last two months - we have major issues!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: mrfilthyrich on August 28, 2015, 04:14:26 PM
I would totally be in except this month is likely going to be the most expensive of the year with us moving to the US and having to furnish a home when we first move in.  I will try not to buy anything that is not necessary.  For instance we need a bed and crib, but we do not need a tv or new work clothes.  Good luck to everybody that actually doesn't spend anything!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: AllieVaulter on August 28, 2015, 06:07:57 PM
I'll join.  I'm specifically looking to save on gas.  My goal is to bike to work every day.  We've got a 8 hr round trip drive scheduled next week for a wedding, but we'll be staying with my parents and I've already bought the wedding present, so hopefully that will just be gas expenditures. 

We've also got some uncertainties (DH is looking for work, so may end up needing something if he lands a job), but if I wait until there's no uncertainties, then I'll never do this! 
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: lbmustache on August 28, 2015, 06:40:23 PM
I'm in!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bloomability on August 28, 2015, 06:59:55 PM
I'm in! It's definitely a goal of mine to have minimal food waste. August kind of fell flat on its face.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on August 29, 2015, 01:44:42 AM
My goal will be to get a handle on the groceries -- currently don't really have a budget, just spend what I want <sigh>
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: BlueHouse on August 29, 2015, 05:58:31 AM
I'm in. Trying to get food spending under control. I waste a lot of food. Now that I have two mouths to feed, I'm going to try to do it cheaper than when it was just me. No more excuses about eating out being cheaper! 
I may actually be turning the corner on getting motivated. I just realized that if I stop wasting so much money on eating out and food, I could potentially double my current mortgage principal payment ! 
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: GoldenNeko on August 29, 2015, 07:48:28 AM
I'm in for Savetember!

August has been good, Income Taxes in September will help flexing the frugality muscle with a good excuse ("well, can't go out this month, taxes to pay "^^).
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Susurrus on August 29, 2015, 12:19:15 PM
I'm in!

My August was pretty bad compared to my usual spending habits, but that's all the more reason to buckle down in September. I also just downloaded the trial version of You Need a Budget, so I'll have lots of fun playing around with that this month.

Good luck everyone!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: trplcrwnr on August 29, 2015, 01:14:23 PM
I'm new to the forums and think this would be a great way to start. I'm in!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on August 29, 2015, 01:46:54 PM
I'm with trplcrwnr.  I'm new to the forum, and this will be a great way to dive into the community!

So...the goal is to save as much as humanly possible for the month of September?  Other than the plane ticket I need to get for Thanksgiving, this should be good!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: wordnerd on August 29, 2015, 02:33:12 PM
So...the goal is to save as much as humanly possible for the month of September? 

Pretty much. Just don't waste any money--whatever that means to you. Still makes purchases that align with your values--food, electricity, a planned-for plane ticket--but see how much fat you can trim from your budget. Welcome to the forum!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Zamboni on August 29, 2015, 05:21:57 PM
I'm in. August did go that well for me in terms of spending, and I really want to make September a chance to rebuild my short term savings stash that was partially used for some summer travel and a new roof.

I'm going to challenge myself to have a new spending "low" this month and stash the rest. Although there is an element of luck in having no unplanned expenditures, if I make this goal for each of the next few months, then savings should increase.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kander on August 30, 2015, 06:01:22 AM
I'm in!! Let's save! :D
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: RNwastash on August 30, 2015, 08:42:18 PM
I'm in!! August was out of control with dining out due to vacationing prior to the kids starting school. It was fun, but not for the wallet.

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: ABK on August 31, 2015, 01:33:02 AM
I'm in too! DH and I each have a week and a half away for work trips during Savetember, during which time we'll be living off our per diems, paid by our employers. I expect our grocery and utility bills to each come down by at least 20%.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Susan on August 31, 2015, 03:50:10 AM
I'm in! My goal is to stay below 1300 for the month.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: johnny847 on August 31, 2015, 05:45:22 AM
I'm also in! I'm aiming for a no buy September, where I can only spend money on rent, utilities, groceries, fuel for my car if necessary, and gifts (though I don't expect to be buying gifts this coming month).
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: lifejoy on August 31, 2015, 06:31:54 AM
Sign me up! This will be a good challenge for me.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kander on August 31, 2015, 01:09:18 PM
My goal is to keep my savings account above 10.000. At this moment we have 11.908,31, but we need to pay more than 1908 on some stuff, so I want to be frugal enough to replenish it.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rosy on August 31, 2015, 04:45:36 PM
The way you renamed the months to make them sound mustachian is funny. I like.
Do you have an altered name made up for every month of the year? If not yet, then Savetember should be followed by Socktober.

I vote for the socktober:)

I just crunched my numbers for August to December and revamped my budget for the thousandth time. I like the looks of it, but in order to really make it work I must stay totally on track in September - no matter what. August was tough and a MMM injection is necessary to stop the hemorrhaging.

I will be sticking to my normal savings allocation come hell or high water and if my plan works I can up my game and stash an extra $300 mo from Oct to Dec.

However, there is one little wrinkle in my plan to the tune of $153. Basically, I need to squeeze the money from other budget allocations or find some other way to cover it.
It is an arbitrary decision - I could take it from my combo immediate emergency slash discretionary fund. But I do not want to do that, because it would be the easy way out - so my challenge for Savetember is to find a way to fund it:)

So wish me luck Mustachians - I'm off to slash the dragon:)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 01, 2015, 12:56:16 AM
And so it begins ....

Welcome to Savetember Mustachian friends! Lets do this!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 01, 2015, 05:26:25 AM
And so it begins ....

Welcome to Savetember Mustachian friends! Lets do this!

Good luck! I won't be joining in these challenges until probably November because of planned things but definitely rooting you all along.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 01, 2015, 06:30:12 AM
Due to a leaky roof, I'm not sure we'll best July or August numbers, but I think we will come pretty close.

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/august-august/msg790416/
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kander on September 01, 2015, 07:02:05 AM
Since this is my first month challenge: what do I need to do? Is there anything you expect from eachother, like daily telling what you've spent or anything else??
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rosy on September 01, 2015, 07:20:40 AM
@kander - you can report in any time you like - both failures and triumphs so you can pick up a little motivation throughout the month.

I've noticed some people like to post weekly, others only biweekly or at the end of the month. My goal is rather specific this month, I don't expect to have an issue with the regular budget, only the arbitrary $153 that I decided to tackle, so I'll check in as I see progress.

 
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: FausseBourgeoise on September 01, 2015, 09:04:54 AM
I went on the trip of a lifetime and spent an absurd amount of money in August (entire first paycheque of new job plus two weeks' vacation pay). It was worth it, and I am now prepared for austerity!

Goal is to spend less than I did in my best month this year, which required me to cut 10% from my budget while also mulling over what to do with my transportation (I had a $35/mo all-access transit pass and now it is gone, so if I want to take the bus at all I'll need to pay). The weather is good so it's time to explore biking. I do live within walking distance of both my jobs, and have been walking there routinely.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: KMMK on September 01, 2015, 09:18:17 AM
Like others, August was expensive for me - lots of infrequent purchases, and a crazy grocery bill.
For September here are my goals:
Groceries - only buy fruits/vegetables (including potatoes) - otherwise eat what is in the house.
Other than regular bills, only spend money on: bus tickets (as I'm going to run out and I'm not in a position to walk everywhere all the time), socializing (a priority, but there shouldn't be that much this month).
No other purchases.
First 2 hours have been a success.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 01, 2015, 09:25:44 AM
First 2 hours have been a success.

Hey me too! Clearly, I just need to stay in my pajamas at my computer the rest of Savetember. It's been working so far- no money spent yet!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bloomability on September 01, 2015, 10:01:21 AM
Situation: nothing easy/already prepared to grab for lunch today
Default: buy lunch
Today: hastily put together a lunch
Result: not spending an unplanned $10; not wasting food I already bought

I intentially bought groceries with this situation in mind. Why was it such a challenge to make lunch?!?
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 01, 2015, 10:07:00 AM
Situation: nothing easy/already prepared to grab for lunch today
Default: buy lunch
Today: hastily put together a lunch
Result: not spending an unplanned $10; not wasting food I already bought

I intentially bought groceries with this situation in mind. Why was it such a challenge to make lunch?!?

Okay, so you've identified a major trigger for yourself! That's a huge step. How will you fix it?

My preferred method is to batch cook chili or spaghetti sauce and freeze it in individual portions. I also do apple sauce this way. Then I will just pull bags out, toss into my stuff, and away I go. I also know people who always have sandwich fixings on hand to ensure they don't buy out- not the most economical, but cheaper than going out to eat.

What's your current system?
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bloomability on September 01, 2015, 10:56:56 AM
Situation: nothing easy/already prepared to grab for lunch today
Default: buy lunch
Today: hastily put together a lunch
Result: not spending an unplanned $10; not wasting food I already bought

I intentially bought groceries with this situation in mind. Why was it such a challenge to make lunch?!?

Okay, so you've identified a major trigger for yourself! That's a huge step. How will you fix it?

My preferred method is to batch cook chili or spaghetti sauce and freeze it in individual portions. I also do apple sauce this way. Then I will just pull bags out, toss into my stuff, and away I go. I also know people who always have sandwich fixings on hand to ensure they don't buy out- not the most economical, but cheaper than going out to eat.

What's your current system?

Thanks! I need to realize that I purposefully pick non time consuming things to eat so I always have time. I just like to be prepared, and when I'm not? disaster.

With my particular job, I'm visiting clients all day with no access to a fridge or microwave. That particular batch system doesnt work for me. I eat out of a lunchbox!

I shop and prep food most Sundays and cook a hot meal each evening while prepping lunch. I just didnt have something prepared because yesterday was long and stressful and miserable. Dinner was actually grapes and peanut butter.

I'm rambling and over explaining. anyway! Food is my biggest focus for this month - meal planning, no waste, etc., etc., for health, energy, finances, overall adulting.

Circling back to Savetember - I could have a nice surplus at the end of the month if I work hard to change my spendy food habits.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 01, 2015, 11:09:23 AM
Just after midnite, I cancelled an online order I was working on that totalled $43 in the cart -- my first two hours were also a success!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Nancy on September 01, 2015, 11:55:46 AM
I'm joining this. I'm focused on my food budget and miscellaneous spending. My plan is to eat what I have in the house and avoid replacing items when I run out. I want to be more flexible in how I cook and figure out how to make meals with whatever is available, as opposed to automatically buying my favorite groceries. As for misc, I've had a one-off expense each month for the past few months. It's a trend I'm ending. If I don't absolutely need it, then I'm not getting it.

Edit: I'm going to leave my wallet at home tomorrow. Just bringing my ID, license, and maybe an emergency $20 in case I get in a wreck.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 01, 2015, 12:16:50 PM
I have a small roof leak. Just got a quote for $900. Oof. I'm trying to figure out other options.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Megma on September 01, 2015, 12:29:41 PM
I'm in for Savetember! August hit me hard - tenant in my extra room moved out at the beginning of the month = no rent and return of majority of a security deposit. I don't even get lower utility bills because I don't pay them!

Groceries were also over budget for August (joint bday party for me and bf resulting in more food and booze than normal) so I want to get that under control. I will be gone for a full week for a work trip but my dad will be staying with us another week so we'll see how that pans out.

Tacked on to my work trip I have 2 days of vacation in a very pricey city with a spendy friend, I will try to keep the meal/shopping costs under control and I already paid for my extra hotel nights. I am very unlikely to ever visit this city again in my life so I also want to enjoy it a little bit.

So my Goals are:
- Spend overall under my monthly budget (Aug was over!), including the $150 in additional taxes I need to pay and my trip
- Keep Groceries & Restaurants (harder than normal with dad visiting & vacation) under budget for the month
- Keep overall vacation days spending below $250 for food/shopping - this is a lot but is is a very expensive city (the Federal per diem rate for meals and incidentals is 183/day!)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 01, 2015, 06:22:32 PM
I'm joining this. I'm focused on my food budget and miscellaneous spending. My plan is to eat what I have in the house and avoid replacing items when I run out. I want to be more flexible in how I cook and figure out how to make meals with whatever is available, as opposed to automatically buying my favorite groceries. As for misc, I've had a one-off expensive each month for the past few months. It's a trend I'm ending. If I don't absolutely need it, then I'm not getting it.

Nancy, I gotta cheer you on for this. We tried this in July and August. It was a little tough at first - we realized a kind of "panic" sets in when you run out of something and have to keep running on what you already have. But it gets easier as you realize you still do actually HAVE FOOD YOU CAN EAT and it's OK.

Plus, when you do eventually go to the store, it makes you feel even that much better when you get good deals on the items you are restocking! It's a kind of buying low and leveraging, but with groceries.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Megma on September 01, 2015, 06:29:59 PM
I'm in for Savetember! August hit me hard - tenant in my extra room moved out at the beginning of the month = no rent and return of majority of a security deposit. I don't even get lower utility bills because I don't pay them!

Groceries were also over budget for August (joint bday party for me and bf resulting in more food and booze than normal) so I want to get that under control. I will be gone for a full week for a work trip but my dad will be staying with us another week so we'll see how that pans out.

Tacked on to my work trip I have 2 days of vacation in a very pricey city with a spendy friend, I will try to keep the meal/shopping costs under control and I already paid for my extra hotel nights. I am very unlikely to ever visit this city again in my life so I also want to enjoy it a little bit.

So my Goals are:
- Spend overall under my monthly budget (Aug was over!), including the $150 in additional taxes I need to pay and my trip
- Keep Groceries & Restaurants (harder than normal with dad visiting & vacation) under budget for the month
- Keep overall vacation days spending below $250 for food/shopping - this is a lot but is is a very expensive city (the Federal per diem rate for meals and incidentals is 183/day!)

Ok, that might be the shortest challenge ever...I got home today to a broken a/c unit and it's still summer here in the south! And bf works at home so we need to fix it. I will try to keep to the challenge as much as possible but this will probably blow the staying under budget plan.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bsmith on September 01, 2015, 06:34:15 PM
I'm in. My August spending was super low, and I'm pleased. My goal this month is to keep expenses low and sell a bunch of hobby crap online. I buy it, take what I want, and then need to sell the rest, but selling is is PITA, so I've procrastinated. I want to keep expenses low, sell that crap, and then not spend the income from it.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 01, 2015, 07:03:17 PM
Ok, that might be the shortest challenge ever...I got home today to a broken a/c unit and it's still summer here in the south! And bf works at home so we need to fix it. I will try to keep to the challenge as much as possible but this will probably blow the staying under budget plan.

Hopefully it's something simple like a burned out capacitor. Is the condenser just suddenly not turning on? Or is it running but just not getting cool?

Check the circuit breaker first, but a capacitor is like a $10 part and that's the most likely reason for the compressor to suddenly fritz.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Carolina on My Mind on September 01, 2015, 09:36:49 PM
I'm getting in on this challenge.  I've spent a ton this summer and need some moral support to get back on track!

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kaposzta on September 02, 2015, 03:54:26 AM
I'm in! I'm trying to save more than 50% of my take home pay this month, which is not a high ratio (as I usually save around 55%), but this month I've already had a few unforeseeable expenses (student loan 3% of take home pay, dentist 6%).
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Alchemilla on September 02, 2015, 04:34:47 AM
I'm in after Abundantly Alcoholic August!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 02, 2015, 06:04:10 AM
I'm in! I'm trying to save more than 50% of my take home pay this month, which is not a high ratio (as I usually save around 55%), but this month I've already had a few unforeseeable expenses (student loan 3% of take home pay, dentist 6%).

How is a student loan unforeseeable?
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Megma on September 02, 2015, 06:48:36 AM
Ok, that might be the shortest challenge ever...I got home today to a broken a/c unit and it's still summer here in the south! And bf works at home so we need to fix it. I will try to keep to the challenge as much as possible but this will probably blow the staying under budget plan.

Hopefully it's something simple like a burned out capacitor. Is the condenser just suddenly not turning on? Or is it running but just not getting cool?

Check the circuit breaker first, but a capacitor is like a $10 part and that's the most likely reason for the compressor to suddenly fritz.

It's running but the air coming out is not cool. My dad came to look at it and he thinks that it probably needs coolant added or a valve somewhere is broken - neither of these things did he think we can fix ourselves, so the HVAC man is on his way today.

I was surprised he said I should not try to add to coolant myself (this is a man who has remodeled his whole house himself and has a part-time maintenance man gig) but I know nothing about A/C units so I went with his judgement.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Mikila on September 02, 2015, 06:50:02 AM
I am in as well.  This Summer's expenditures make me want to eat ramen for the next few months to get back on track.  Outside of bills and groceries, we are spending the minimum necessary. 

I am looking forward to seeing everyone's progress.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 02, 2015, 07:45:44 AM
Ok, that might be the shortest challenge ever...I got home today to a broken a/c unit and it's still summer here in the south! And bf works at home so we need to fix it. I will try to keep to the challenge as much as possible but this will probably blow the staying under budget plan.

Hopefully it's something simple like a burned out capacitor. Is the condenser just suddenly not turning on? Or is it running but just not getting cool?

Check the circuit breaker first, but a capacitor is like a $10 part and that's the most likely reason for the compressor to suddenly fritz.

It's running but the air coming out is not cool. My dad came to look at it and he thinks that it probably needs coolant added or a valve somewhere is broken - neither of these things did he think we can fix ourselves, so the HVAC man is on his way today.

I was surprised he said I should not try to add to coolant myself (this is a man who has remodeled his whole house himself and has a part-time maintenance man gig) but I know nothing about A/C units so I went with his judgement.
If you go to the compressor unit (the big box outside) and can hear the fan come on, but not the compressor itself, it's probably not a coolant issue. Either it's something like a capacitor (cheap) or a dead compressor (expensive). And if it were a coolant issue, it would mean you had a leak somewhere.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 02, 2015, 07:55:38 AM
I would love to surprise my husband with $$ left in the bank account at the end of the month! He does all his tracking every 2 weeks and I more keep track of the day to day. We are double tracking bright now but I'm trying to switch us over to an online budget while he continues with the way he's kept a spending record on paper for us for many years. So it would be sweeeet for him to be pleasantly surprised September 30th!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: AllieVaulter on September 02, 2015, 10:28:04 AM
I mentioned Savetember to DH, but apparently I wasn't explicit enough.  Yesterday he bought 4 months worth of dog food (it was a good sale), and some supplies for fishing (less than $20 worth).  He was so upset when he realized the challenge was to not spend money this month!  The dog food puts us near $100 of not necessary spending, so we probably won't be setting any records, but we'll keep trying.  And now we're on the same page.  :)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 02, 2015, 10:34:42 AM
megma - you need specific licenses and equipment to add/handle refrigerant, if that is indeed the issue.

AllieVaulter - There's nothing wrong with stocking up because of a deal. IIRC forummm did this back in July's challenge when there was a killer sale on peanuts.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bsmith on September 02, 2015, 10:37:41 AM
Quote
I'm in after Abundantly Alcoholic August!

Yeah we did this, too. Thought about breaking alcohol out into it's own line item in YNAB, but then decided to keep it mixed in with groceries.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Megma on September 02, 2015, 11:06:14 AM
megma - you need specific licenses and equipment to add/handle refrigerant, if that is indeed the issue.


Well that explains my dad's reaction, I did not know this! HVAC guy is coming this afternoon, so we will get it fixed soon hopefully.

Forummm, the compressor looked ok to me and my bf when we went outside to look at it...not that we can tell anything about it aside from the fact it was running!

Thanks for the tips everyone! :-)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Alchemilla on September 02, 2015, 11:07:53 AM
Quote
I'm in after Abundantly Alcoholic August!

Yeah we did this, too. Thought about breaking alcohol out into it's own line item in YNAB, but then decided to keep it mixed in with groceries.

That deninitely helps with the denial about how much its costing us. Back to home brew in October!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bsmith on September 02, 2015, 11:11:30 AM
Quote
Quote from: bsmith on Today at 10:37:41 AM

    Quote

        I'm in after Abundantly Alcoholic August!


    Yeah we did this, too. Thought about breaking alcohol out into it's own line item in YNAB, but then decided to keep it mixed in with groceries.


That deninitely helps with the denial about how much its costing us. Back to home brew in October!


Yeah we throw those cardboard circles from boxed wine into a little container. Counted them up the other day and wished we hadn't. $10-$15 a pop!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 02, 2015, 12:39:11 PM
megma - you need specific licenses and equipment to add/handle refrigerant, if that is indeed the issue.


Well that explains my dad's reaction, I did not know this! HVAC guy is coming this afternoon, so we will get it fixed soon hopefully.

Forummm, the compressor looked ok to me and my bf when we went outside to look at it...not that we can tell anything about it aside from the fact it was running!

Thanks for the tips everyone! :-)

You can't see the compressor running--only hear it. The fan (what you could see spinning) is not the compressor.

I mentioned Savetember to DH, but apparently I wasn't explicit enough.  Yesterday he bought 4 months worth of dog food (it was a good sale), and some supplies for fishing (less than $20 worth).  He was so upset when he realized the challenge was to not spend money this month!  The dog food puts us near $100 of not necessary spending, so we probably won't be setting any records, but we'll keep trying.  And now we're on the same page.  :)

I say always take advantage of a good value. If the dog food was a great price, and it was something you'd buy anyway, you're lowering your costs for future months. I bought like 20 pounds of cheese last month when it was on sale, and peanuts the month before that.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: iknowiyam on September 02, 2015, 01:59:41 PM
We need this after last month... will see if DH is on board for Savetember.
My husband didn't really get it when asked him about this. After all:

(1) I make 95% of our purchases, necessary or not. So, really it's up to me.
(2) We are amazingly good most months, just not last month.

Maybe this is a moot point for us. We just spent $6.73 at Goodwill today (got 3 items). We probably will not buy much for the rest of the month, other than groceries.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bsmith on September 02, 2015, 02:10:33 PM
Quote
I bought like 20 pounds of cheese last month when it was on sale, and peanuts the month before that.

I just discovered cheese at Sam's is half the grocery store price. I bought the five pound bag and froze four. We're cheese rich! Not as much as you, with your showy 20lbs, though.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kander on September 02, 2015, 02:12:11 PM
Our spendings on the first 2 days of September:

13,22 on groceries

Also some money went to utilities and insurance, but since I can't change anything about that I'm not going to track it.


And I've taken 30 of our bank account. We'll pretend we've already spend it and then at the end of the month.... kaching :P (it's not much, but if this works I'm planning to take 40 next month and build it up)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: AllieVaulter on September 02, 2015, 02:41:02 PM
I mentioned Savetember to DH, but apparently I wasn't explicit enough.  Yesterday he bought 4 months worth of dog food (it was a good sale), and some supplies for fishing (less than $20 worth).  He was so upset when he realized the challenge was to not spend money this month!  The dog food puts us near $100 of not necessary spending, so we probably won't be setting any records, but we'll keep trying.  And now we're on the same page.  :)

I say always take advantage of a good value. If the dog food was a great price, and it was something you'd buy anyway, you're lowering your costs for future months. I bought like 20 pounds of cheese last month when it was on sale, and peanuts the month before that.

I always appreciate a sale on necessities.  And my DH is a sale finding fiend (just one of the many things I love about him).  I just found his reaction hilarious.  What he actually said was, "Man!  I should have bought these yesterday!" 
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Nancy on September 02, 2015, 03:16:46 PM
Nancy, I gotta cheer you on for this. We tried this in July and August. It was a little tough at first - we realized a kind of "panic" sets in when you run out of something and have to keep running on what you already have. But it gets easier as you realize you still do actually HAVE FOOD YOU CAN EAT and it's OK.

Plus, when you do eventually go to the store, it makes you feel even that much better when you get good deals on the items you are restocking! It's a kind of buying low and leveraging, but with groceries.

Thanks for the encouragement! I already feel panic just thinking about running out of my favorite foods. Good on you for pulling it off two months in a row! You'll be my inspiration.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 02, 2015, 04:33:30 PM
Took kids and neighbour kids to a free museum today and then we all came home to our house and I made popcorn for them all and they are watching a dvd together. Free feels good!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 02, 2015, 06:18:11 PM
I am in. I like "savetember" much more than stingy September, the start of spring which was what I was thinking of it as. Incredibly I managed to spend 100% of my pay check last month (a holiday, planned purchase and gigantic vet bill pushed me over the threshhold) which has scared the beejeezus out of me (I used to always joke i couldn't spend it if I tried) so redemption is needed. I haven't spent anything so far, though will need to buy some medication today ($6) and may need some groceries (is coffee a need when I can get it at work free?) The one exception is I am likely to buy a scooter (small motorbike) this month and sell my car. So obviously spending money on the bike and associated safety gear will not count as it's a short term spend to save money in the long run on car operating costs and should let me increase the stash by $5k or so.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: MrsPrettyInPink on September 02, 2015, 10:08:56 PM
I'm so in! 

I'm new to MMM, but jumping in feet and fist first.  :)

Trying to save and have something left over at the end of the month. 
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 02, 2015, 11:38:25 PM
Put a Playmobile-type Advent Calendar in my Amazon cart when I found it for almost 50% off. Was about to click "buy" and then came to my senses as I read the reviews that it was really junky. Whew! Glad I came to my senses. This will happen many, many times this month.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: michaelrecycles on September 03, 2015, 12:23:47 AM
I'm in! As with a few others here, summer was a bit spendy. This was for good reason, namely a couple road trips that I thoroughly enjoyed. But it's time to reign it in.

So far this month, I've:

Now to focus on regular expenditures.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Anje on September 03, 2015, 05:13:51 AM
I'm in too.

Got some repairs to do after august. I went over on my "other" post buying a vacuum (I used up all of septembers budget, as it happens) and my "clothes" post getting new shoes. Don't regret either for a second, but this month I don't need anything and so will not spend anything on those 2 posts (except if a ridicolously low sale for frying pans comes up - I will need one of those in the next few months)

Will also try to keep up the good work from august and manage on $ 250-300 on food (am in northern Europe - my usual budget is 430/month.)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 03, 2015, 05:20:37 AM
Put a Playmobile-type Advent Calendar in my Amazon cart when I found it for almost 50% off. Was about to click "buy" and then came to my senses as I read the reviews that it was really junky. Whew! Glad I came to my senses. This will happen many, many times this month.

A minimum 48 hour cooling off period between adding to cart and checkout is (almost always) a good practice. Some folks even make it more like a month.

I quite frequently come back to things I've saved for later and remove them.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Nancy on September 03, 2015, 07:12:22 AM
Do you wait until the end of the month to sweep your additional savings into your taxable investments or do you invest the money at the beginning of the month so you have no choice but to stick with your lower budgets?

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: KMMK on September 03, 2015, 07:35:01 AM
Well, my first two days were good, but day 3 is probably going to involve some spending. A friend wants to go camping and it's probably the last really hot day of the summer, so I'm going to go. At least I can consider this spending to fall under my socializing exception.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 03, 2015, 07:38:35 AM
Do you wait until the end of the month to sweep your additional savings into your taxable investments or do you invest the money at the beginning of the month so you have no choice but to stick with your lower budgets?

Nancy - I have a dedicated Money Market account at my credit union I use as a "cache for cash" (ha). I accumulate money into that account - it can't be accessed via ATM and can't be electronically drafted.  This keeps me and the DW from doing anything with it unless we go to the credit union and do something.

However, online, I can MOVE money between all the accounts. So when I have enough cash in the cache, I squirt it in the direction I want to take it by pushing it to the checking account then immediately using the checking account to electronically draft the money.

The one exception to that, is when the equities markets started to decline last week, i went ahead and moved $2k into Roth IRA. That allowed me to get at least 7 more shares of the fund I'm in for the same price as last time.

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kaposzta on September 03, 2015, 07:44:15 AM
I'm in! I'm trying to save more than 50% of my take home pay this month, which is not a high ratio (as I usually save around 55%), but this month I've already had a few unforeseeable expenses (student loan 3% of take home pay, dentist 6%).

How is a student loan unforeseeable?

I always pay the same amount at the beginning of the month, but a few days ago they informed me that I need to pay more this month. I don't know why. I made the payment, because it's a small amount, and it will decrease my balance anyway.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: AllieVaulter on September 03, 2015, 08:36:08 AM
I'm so in! 

I'm new to MMM, but jumping in feet and fist first.  :)

Trying to save and have something left over at the end of the month.

Welcome MrsPrettyInPink!  Joining a group for accountability can definitely help you save money.  We're glad to have you.  Good luck and may your frugality muscles always be strengthening.  :)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 03, 2015, 10:58:59 AM
I'm having a quiet start to the month. Spending a few days at home on projects where I have the supplies: salsa yesterday, cabbage rolls today, and fall cleaning. Bought a bottle of cleaner so I can clean floors and trim, but that's it so far.

Next week will be harder: a trip to the city to buy clothes, an electrician comes to visit, and a trip one town over for a job interview.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: bsmith on September 03, 2015, 11:46:38 AM
I needed to go to the grocery store Monday, but I'm holding out and eating out of the pantry/freezer. Made a loaf of bread yesterday to help. Grocery store tomorrow, then.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Alchemilla on September 03, 2015, 01:01:43 PM
Spending so far...

sellotape
dishwasher tablets (in bulk, ebay)
a fitted sheet to replace one that DH ripped (sounds exciting but isn't!).
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kander on September 03, 2015, 01:02:19 PM
Our son needed new clothes because he grows very hard. He went from size 86 to 98 for pants. So I've bought some at a budget store and some second hand clothes. It still was a lot of money, but now I have a lot of clothes for him and I hope that he doesn't need anymore clothes this winter then what he has now... Only shoes maybe.

Today I've spent:

117,50 on clothes
2,69 on stuff for our house (a toilet roll holder)
19 on groceries
2,20 on food outside the house

It wasn't a great day for saving.... I'm sorry....

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: JJNL on September 03, 2015, 04:18:00 PM
Count me in too - although I'm going to be spending money on the holiday I'm taking at the end of the month so my overall savings rate is not going to be something to write home about. I've already saved up for that, so I'm going to put the challenge to work on my normal, everyday spending and just try to keep that as low as possible. Main focus: groceries!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 03, 2015, 05:22:39 PM
Put a Playmobile-type Advent Calendar in my Amazon cart when I found it for almost 50% off. Was about to click "buy" and then came to my senses as I read the reviews that it was really junky. Whew! Glad I came to my senses. This will happen many, many times this month.
Don't buy anything online that you don't need immediately... Add it to your cyber Monday shopping list!!!I am on a shopping moratorium until black Friday/cyber Monday where I can buy all the stuff on my list.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 03, 2015, 05:25:33 PM
Didn't manage to find time to get to the shops for the medication yesterday, so still at $0 today. Expect I will buy groceries, hit the pharmacy and do a load of laundry today (or early tommorrow) so the no spend streak will end but it was a great start to savetember :-)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: ABK on September 04, 2015, 12:50:18 PM
Groceries for week 1 at only 60% of the week's budget for groceries. So far a win!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: mom22boys on September 04, 2015, 02:57:57 PM
I'm definitely in on this one, and finally have time to post.  September will be a huge savings month for me because I get my bonus at the end of the month, and also finally vested in some stock, to sell.  Here's my plan for the month

1 - Reduced my pay check to $0.  After 401k, HSA, taxes, and other crap, all the extra is going to fund my MEGA backdoor 401K contributions. This includes my bonus, yippee! I can contribute up to $20K.  I already have $4K in it, and will add another $10K this month. 
2 - Sell my stock, which I'll use to cover a few bills while my pay check is $0. I have the cash to cover most, but not quite all, and I don't want to dip into my emergency fund too much. The rest of the stock proceeds will go to pay off some more special assessments on my house.  (Already fully funded my Roth IRA.) This is the ONLY reason I want the market to go up a little, so I can get better sale price on the stock.  Luckily I can hold for awhile and sell if/when it goes back up.  Until then....sinking money into MEGA backdoor!
3 - No money spent on going out to eat.
4 - Keep groceries under $300.  This is a wild card since I'm buying a 1/4 side of beef.  I'm not sure when it will be ready, so that might blow this number away.  But, I'm ok with that since it's grass-feed beef that will last us awhile.
5 - No other unnecessary purchases.

It's gonna be an awesome month! 

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Zamboni on September 05, 2015, 05:54:31 AM
So far the month has started out well. The only expenses have been food and one highway toll.

We have not gone out to eat at all. My children have always preferred to eat at home, so when we go out to eat it is because I'd rather not cook that night. I'm at the point where I sometimes think "there's nothing planned at home for dinner," but then I realize I can make pancakes and eggs or soup and sandwiches for dinner and everyone will be perfectly happy. My all time low month for eating out was something like $1.41. I wonder if I can beat that this month?

I do have one long-planned electronics purchase that I might make on Labor Day weekend, but only if the price is right. We've research and figured out the exact model we want and know the standing price, but eventually there will be a sale. Otherwise, not buying anything this month.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 05, 2015, 11:48:11 AM
I had planned to drive into the city to buy some clothes to replace badly worn out pants and get a mid-weight jacket to wear in the fall. My budget was $200 for clothes. It also takes about $30 worth of gas and a trip runs the high risk of other spending. I had checked a few stores online, but no luck. This morning I found that Landsend had a 30% off sale for Canadian orders over $150 US on Labour Day (that's how we spell it). I've ordered two pairs of pants plus the perfect weight jacket. There was free shipping, and tax and customs duties were included. Total cost $213 Cdn. Perfectly within budget. Pretty close to par exchange this way and saved me a day going to the city.

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 05, 2015, 01:44:00 PM
I got a better quote for my roof leak today. I think they're actually going to do a better job, do twice as much, and charge about 40% less. It's still $575, but better than $900 for half as much work.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 05, 2015, 01:59:13 PM
I got a better quote for my roof leak today. I think they're actually going to do a better job, do twice as much, and charge about 40% less. It's still $575, but better than $900 for half as much work.

That's good news!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 05, 2015, 02:59:23 PM
I got $90 off my $200 grocery shop today by using cc points (PC MasterCard for Canadians).

Also, I re-tried a produce stand that has frustrated me in the past with high prices, low quality and a dirty store. They are under new management and it was fantastic! Great prices on seasonal items and things like apples were super fresh. I bought a 50lb box and the manager gave me $5 dollars off without me even asking for a discount. I had earlier asked him if they had changed hands, because the store looked really nice and the quality was so much better .. making friends with my local produce manager for future deals :-)

I now have a ton of food in the house for our large family for $210 :-)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rosy on September 05, 2015, 05:16:14 PM
OK - so far so good. I already squeezed that $153. I needed for my revamped budget out of the old budget. Plus, I am returning two, possible three items which would bolster the budget by about $40 to $65.

Big spur of the moment decision on the 1st of September - decided to save all receipts for groceries, CVS-Walgreens and eating out. I am not sure if this will turn into a shocking moment of truth at the end of the month of just confirm what I guestimated.
We'll see.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 05, 2015, 07:03:15 PM
I got a better quote for my roof leak today. I think they're actually going to do a better job, do twice as much, and charge about 40% less. It's still $575, but better than $900 for half as much work.

That's good news!
Very! And I'm also DIYing the drywall repair in the ceiling.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 05, 2015, 08:12:58 PM
I got a better quote for my roof leak today. I think they're actually going to do a better job, do twice as much, and charge about 40% less. It's still $575, but better than $900 for half as much work.

That's good news!
Very! And I'm also DIYing the drywall repair in the ceiling.

Insourcing FTW! YOU GO GUY! :-)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 05, 2015, 10:51:28 PM
$38 spent to date, $18 of which was medication. The remainder has been socialisaing ($9 coffees and soft drinks with friends... Have been out on three separate occasions) and fast food ($11 for two dinners)... The fast food probably isn't in the spirit of savetember but as this is a big budget hole for me it's not too bad. If I can get through the month with non rent and Bill spend at $500 or less I will call this a big win!!!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 05, 2015, 11:36:30 PM

Big spur of the moment decision on the 1st of September - decided to save all receipts for groceries, CVS-Walgreens and eating out. I am not sure if this will turn into a shocking moment of truth at the end of the month of just confirm what I guestimated.
We'll see.


This is a really good idea!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 06, 2015, 02:27:53 AM

Big spur of the moment decision on the 1st of September - decided to save all receipts for groceries, CVS-Walgreens and eating out. I am not sure if this will turn into a shocking moment of truth at the end of the month of just confirm what I guestimated.
We'll see.


This is a really good idea!

Most of receipts I stick in a plastic baggie for the month, but anything I consider non-normal, I stick it on the bathroom mirror so I see it first thing in the morning. Has saved my butt several times.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 06, 2015, 10:33:22 AM
We're doing well on savetember so far. We paid extra on DH's SLs (an extra $300), and had $77 to the DMV for the title change on our car. I also caved and bought $10 worth of fresh tamales from a neighbor lady yesterday. I was going to pass, but a- her tamales are delicious and b- I noticed she's driving on a spare and it's flat right now. The tamales were the least I could do. Otherwise, we've only had living expenses: internet, rent, groceries. I'm hoping we can stay on pace for groceries and come in low on the budget again, like last month. Yesterday was a big stock up day, and we got our amazon subscribe and save earlier this month, so we shouldn't need much besides produce and eggs the rest of the month.

Yesterday I got my Schoola shipment of the $50 in free clothes that was going around last month. The vibrams I got are COMPLETELY new and look unworn. They were labeled the wrong size, 7 1/2 women's whereas they're an 8 1/2, but since I'm an 8, this worked out well for me. I had thought I would just sell or gift them to someone if they didn't fit. Instead, brand new workout shoes for free that bought new would have been $60-80. I also got a skirt and a couple shirts that will work. Although one tanktop was maternity but wasn't labeled as such. Oh well, I'll stash it away for a rainy day ;)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 06, 2015, 10:35:07 AM
I now have a ton of food in the house for our large family for $210 :-)
I really liked having a good produce store when I was living in the city. I turned my shopping around, too, so that I bought the produce first and then bought the rest of the groceries  to go with what was fresh and cheap.

It sounds like you had a great shop. How long do you think this food will keep the family going?
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 06, 2015, 11:01:07 AM
It sounds like you had a great shop. How long do you think this food will keep the family going?

Well a week, except for things like the Borax which will be around for years. The big bag of raisins will get me through around 3 weeks. The 50lb of apples will last a month. But the regular produce will need to be replenished by next weekend :-)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 06, 2015, 11:27:43 AM
It sounds like you had a great shop. How long do you think this food will keep the family going?

Well a week, except for things like the Borax which will be around for years. The big bag of raisins will get me through around 3 weeks. The 50lb of apples will last a month. But the regular produce will need to be replenished by next weekend :-)

And how often do you shop for the non-produce groceries?
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 06, 2015, 12:53:46 PM

Big spur of the moment decision on the 1st of September - decided to save all receipts for groceries, CVS-Walgreens and eating out. I am not sure if this will turn into a shocking moment of truth at the end of the month of just confirm what I guestimated.
We'll see.


This is a really good idea!

Most of receipts I stick in a plastic baggie for the month, but anything I consider non-normal, I stick it on the bathroom mirror so I see it first thing in the morning. Has saved my butt several times.

Does saving receipts help with something? I pay for everything with a CC so it's easy to tally up expenses at the end of the month. And I almost never buy anything I would return. And if I did need to return something many places can look up the purchase with your credit card anyway.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: lbmustache on September 06, 2015, 01:01:15 PM
Savetember has not started out well. Needed some new tops for work, Express was having a 40% off sale, so I picked up two sweater/tunic tops for $70. More than I needed to spend.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 06, 2015, 01:43:29 PM
Savetember has not started out well. Needed some new tops for work, Express was having a 40% off sale, so I picked up two sweater/tunic tops for $70. More than I needed to spend.

"Needed"? And there are no thrift stores in SoCal? You could probably find similar stuff there for a couple bucks.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 06, 2015, 01:45:05 PM
Does saving receipts help with something? I pay for everything with a CC so it's easy to tally up expenses at the end of the month. And I almost never buy anything I would return. And if I did need to return something many places can look up the purchase with your credit card anyway.

It helps if you are still trying to figure out what you might be spending money on that you didn't have to. For example cheaper fruit, vs more expensive. Healthy snacks vs junk food. Nutrition vs entertainment.

And also for those of us who don't use credit cards for everyday spending. My debit card tracks a lot of my spending, but not all of it.

In Canada, most places couldn't look up your return using your credit number. You would rely on packaging and that they stock the item and that you look like an honest person. Also, you'd never get a full credit -- just a credit for future purchases.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 06, 2015, 02:55:05 PM
Does saving receipts help with something? I pay for everything with a CC so it's easy to tally up expenses at the end of the month. And I almost never buy anything I would return. And if I did need to return something many places can look up the purchase with your credit card anyway.

It helps me remember what I've done in the month - I'm bad to forget things. Long ago, before I saved receipts, I've actually bought the same thing twice then found it later. Saving the receipts stops that.

Second is in returning stuff. I went through SEVERAL mosquito killing lights one summer and had to just give up after the third one melted on me just like the first two.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 06, 2015, 02:58:49 PM
Savetember has not started out well. Needed some new tops for work, Express was having a 40% off sale, so I picked up two sweater/tunic tops for $70. More than I needed to spend.

"Needed"? And there are no thrift stores in SoCal? You could probably find similar stuff there for a couple bucks.

Is it time to start delivering facepunches? (It's not my thread so I have not availed myself, but I thought I would ask. This IS the MMM forums and if we've not been delivering facepunches, are we falling down on the job?)

I'm getting annoyed by the confessionals. I don't wanna read this shit. I want to hear about winners, not losers.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: forummm on September 06, 2015, 03:40:20 PM
Savetember has not started out well. Needed some new tops for work, Express was having a 40% off sale, so I picked up two sweater/tunic tops for $70. More than I needed to spend.

"Needed"? And there are no thrift stores in SoCal? You could probably find similar stuff there for a couple bucks.

Is it time to start delivering facepunches? (It's not my thread so I have not availed myself, but I thought I would ask. This IS the MMM forums and if we've not been delivering facepunches, are we falling down on the job?)

I'm getting annoyed by the confessionals. I don't wanna read this shit. I want to hear about winners, not losers.
You can post whatever you like. It's everyone's thread.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 06, 2015, 03:40:37 PM
Is it time to start delivering facepunches? (It's not my thread so I have not availed myself, but I thought I would ask. This IS the MMM forums and if we've not been delivering facepunches, are we falling down on the job?)

I'm getting annoyed by the confessionals. I don't wanna read this shit. I want to hear about winners, not losers.

Face punches are always on the table. If people didn't want to face criticism, they shouldn't post about money on the Internet. That said, there's always the prime directive of "not being a dick" and realizing people put priorities differently.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rural on September 06, 2015, 04:26:06 PM
I suppose we're in. We started tracking again on August 1 (first time since 2007), and being conscious makes a big difference, it seems. Groceries were the largest expense at $294, followed by fuel as. The term started on the 17th. I don't think fuel will go up this month actually, since I was there every day in the weeks leading up, mostly trying to create, staff, and find rooms for more course sections - we've had a jump in enrollment.


So we're tracking discretionary spending via receipts on a spreadsheet (which is also set up to do MPG since we're entering fuel anyway). I can see total out of pocket at a glance for the month in online bill pay since we put everything discretionary on a credit card and pay that off as well as paying bills. But the totals don't exactly synch since the amount due on the card isn't what spend from the first to the first. I think I've decided I don't care. We're close enough.


Discretionary spending in August was $1071 and bills were $291. Add in prorated annual, biannual, and per three months bills (car insurance, home insurance, property tax, trash pickup, and vehicle tags and registration) at $212.02 per month on average, and we get $1574.02 "spent." Don't know if we can beat that in September, but I'd like to equal it. That puts us on track to keep maxing the HSA, add to the 457 every month, cash flow his tuition and books without touching savings, and do just fine on my base salary alone. Should leave us with extra savings every month to the tune of about $300.


Our discretionary even includes some home and car repair costs (parts and building supplies, which is all we need since he does it all).


We didn't give up anything we need or really want; we were just aware of our spending. We eat out when friends invite us, and if we're just too tired to cook, we get something cheap (Little Ceasars pizza is $5 and feeds us both and won't kill us once a week or less).


It's working, better than I'd thought when we decided he'd quit teaching and go back to school. I hadn't expected to be able to cash flow his school expenses, let alone to do it and save money without even considering my side gigs. So we're in, and bring on Savetember.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: lbmustache on September 06, 2015, 04:47:01 PM
Savetember has not started out well. Needed some new tops for work, Express was having a 40% off sale, so I picked up two sweater/tunic tops for $70. More than I needed to spend.

"Needed"? And there are no thrift stores in SoCal? You could probably find similar stuff there for a couple bucks.

Is it time to start delivering facepunches? (It's not my thread so I have not availed myself, but I thought I would ask. This IS the MMM forums and if we've not been delivering facepunches, are we falling down on the job?)

I'm getting annoyed by the confessionals. I don't wanna read this shit. I want to hear about winners, not losers.

Yes I deserve a facepunch for this. My desires got the best of me. And YES there are tons of thrift stores. Like I said, face punch all around.

I guess in "winner" news: Spent way less on a friend's birthday than I had budgeted for. Also got a nice little bonus from work, which means more money into my savings account.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 06, 2015, 05:24:16 PM
It sounds like you had a great shop. How long do you think this food will keep the family going?

Well a week, except for things like the Borax which will be around for years. The big bag of raisins will get me through around 3 weeks. The 50lb of apples will last a month. But the regular produce will need to be replenished by next weekend :-)

And how often do you shop for the non-produce groceries?

Probably every 3-4 weeks. We purchase a side of beef every fall and 50 chickens every July from our friendly farmers. We buy dairy products across the line in the USA (much cheaper than Canada). I buy 100's of lbs of berries off the farm for the deep freeze (though not this year due to my surgery). Make my own bread with wheat I grind myself. Yeah, so basically my groceries are all over the map! Haha!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 06, 2015, 06:04:47 PM
Savetember has not started out well. Needed some new tops for work, Express was having a 40% off sale, so I picked up two sweater/tunic tops for $70. More than I needed to spend.

"Needed"? And there are no thrift stores in SoCal? You could probably find similar stuff there for a couple bucks.

Is it time to start delivering facepunches? (It's not my thread so I have not availed myself, but I thought I would ask. This IS the MMM forums and if we've not been delivering facepunches, are we falling down on the job?)

I'm getting annoyed by the confessionals. I don't wanna read this shit. I want to hear about winners, not losers.

Yes I deserve a facepunch for this. My desires got the best of me. And YES there are tons of thrift stores. Like I said, face punch all around.

I guess in "winner" news: Spent way less on a friend's birthday than I had budgeted for. Also got a nice little bonus from work, which means more money into my savings account.

Take the stuff back to Express and tell us what you find at the thrift store. Show us your best moxie, girlfriend.

BTW: there's an even bigger sale going on in the stock market right now. Equities are on sale, more than 12% off. I'd be running, not walking, to vanguard.com and buying some of that delicious Roth IRA action.

And lest ye think I'm throwing stones from a glass house, I did exactly that last week. But I do suck a little bit: I jumped too soon, the market was down again on Friday.

Guess what I'm buying DW for Christmas? Her own Roth IRA from Vanguard. Cash is burning a hole in my money market account right NOW. Will be doing that next week. Gotta get in early for those Christmas bargains!!!

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 06, 2015, 06:10:28 PM
It sounds like you had a great shop. How long do you think this food will keep the family going?

Well a week, except for things like the Borax which will be around for years. The big bag of raisins will get me through around 3 weeks. The 50lb of apples will last a month. But the regular produce will need to be replenished by next weekend :-)

And how often do you shop for the non-produce groceries?

Probably every 3-4 weeks. We purchase a side of beef every fall and 50 chickens every July from our friendly farmers. We buy dairy products across the line in the USA (much cheaper than Canada). I buy 100's of lbs of berries off the farm for the deep freeze (though not this year due to my surgery). Make my own bread with wheat I grind myself. Yeah, so basically my groceries are all over the map! Haha!

1967mama, now THAT is dead sexy. I've GOT to get in on some of that action. The best I can muster is Aldi and using my seal-a-meal to partition up larger quantity buys into the freezer.

Surely I can do better for...SAVETEMBER!!!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 06, 2015, 06:24:46 PM
Make my own bread with wheat I grind myself.

I read Erica/NWEdible's blog because it is the closest I will really get to homesteading, which is a personal fantasy of mine. Sometimes she writes a sentence that will never cross my lips. This line of yours is like that!

My local grocery store has a 20% meat sales every month from September through May (sometimes skipping December), so that's how I deal with the cost of meat. When I say local, it is three doors away from my house. I stocked up on berries this year, but not nearly enough. I have made tomato/red pepper sauce and salsa and Erica's confit. I've frozen any excess from my CSA share. I envy you on the dairy products, since there is no way to do that cheaply here. (I live in cattle country, but they are for beef.) I am hoping to stock up on some whole winter squash and definitely on potatoes. The other project is that  I am trying to buy "one extra" on regularly bought items when they are on sale, so that I have a stash if the roads close or if there is some cash flow emergency.

This is definitely improving the supply of food I have on hand, and it is starting to improve the cost.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 06, 2015, 06:43:37 PM
Been doing some temp work for a family member. Increasing income will help increase the "save" margin for this month! Plus, helping out a family member who was in a tight spot (wasn't able to get very much needed employee coverage). Win win!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 07, 2015, 03:56:23 PM
1967mama - what's the cuft (or cubic meters) of your freezer space? That's an impressive amount of meat to be able to have in stock!

We have a 7 cuft that's almost maxed out already, but I'd really like to get some beef in addition to the pork we've been eating down since March. Only way to do that in bulk is to get another deep freeze. (I was planning this from the start anyways, as then we can eat enough down to have one freezer still running while the other defrosts.)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 07, 2015, 04:10:41 PM
I think I'm going to go ahead and belatedly join since I've enjoyed commenting.  Family of 5, $3700 budgeted outflows this month.

About $740 is principal reduction of debt (mortgage, SLs, and a medical bill we requested a payment plan on).

Optional expenditures already this month:

-A rain shell and nicer winter gloves for my wife ($117)
-A $30 box of snapware Pyrex containers, as we wanted more containers that didn't leak.

I also bought a used radial arm saw with cabinet used for $50, but paid using my personal allowance.

This month is the first month I've given myself a firm $700 food budget, which will remain going forward. In months I spend under this, the surplus carries over to fund bulk purchases. Already this month I've bought 100 pounds of apples (eating fresh, canning as applesauce, and drying as chips). Before the month ends, I'll probably buy close to another 100 pounds of apples, plus another 50 pounds of canning tomatoes.

Extra details about my budget are in my journal if anyone cares.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 07, 2015, 06:31:57 PM
Yesterday I bought a crockpot in an effort to get myself to cook more.  One of the problems I face is that I never know how long I'll work on any given day, and when I get home, I'm usually pretty tired.  If the crockpot works, that should hopefully translate into longer-term savings.

In an effort to mitigate the crockpot and airplane ticket I'm buying for Thanksgiving, I've applied for an AMEX card that will give me $150 back after only spending $500 in the first three months.  Heck, the plane ticket alone takes up a good chunk of that!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: wordnerd on September 07, 2015, 06:36:45 PM
Yesterday I bought a crockpot in an effort to get myself to cook more.  One of the problems I face is that I never know how long I'll work on any given day, and when I get home, I'm usually pretty tired.  If the crockpot works, that should hopefully translate into longer-term savings.

Crock pots are the best. We get a pork butt for under a dollar a pound, spice it, let it cook all day, and have delicious pulled pork all week. There are tons of things you can cook with them, and they're pretty cheap as far as kitchen appliances go.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 07, 2015, 07:00:27 PM
Yesterday I bought a crockpot in an effort to get myself to cook more.  One of the problems I face is that I never know how long I'll work on any given day, and when I get home, I'm usually pretty tired.  If the crockpot works, that should hopefully translate into longer-term savings.

Crock pots are the best. We get a pork butt for under a dollar a pound, spice it, let it cook all day, and have delicious pulled pork all week. There are tons of things you can cook with them, and they're pretty cheap as far as kitchen appliances go.
Mmmm, that sounds good!  I'll have to try that as soon as I finish my pot roast I made today.  The leftovers should last me about a week!  hahaha
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: wordnerd on September 07, 2015, 07:07:18 PM
Yesterday I bought a crockpot in an effort to get myself to cook more.  One of the problems I face is that I never know how long I'll work on any given day, and when I get home, I'm usually pretty tired.  If the crockpot works, that should hopefully translate into longer-term savings.

Crock pots are the best. We get a pork butt for under a dollar a pound, spice it, let it cook all day, and have delicious pulled pork all week. There are tons of things you can cook with them, and they're pretty cheap as far as kitchen appliances go.
Mmmm, that sounds good!  I'll have to try that as soon as I finish my pot roast I made today.  The leftovers should last me about a week!  hahaha

I love having leftovers all week long. Now that it's become routine for me, I wonder why everyone doesn't do it, especially those with tight evening schedules that make cooking a challenge.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Susan on September 08, 2015, 12:16:11 AM
Spent about 8,- so far on other things than groceries this month. However, we do have a wedding coming up next week and 3 birthday parties this month.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 08, 2015, 02:24:50 AM
Yesterday I bought a crockpot in an effort to get myself to cook more.  One of the problems I face is that I never know how long I'll work on any given day, and when I get home, I'm usually pretty tired.  If the crockpot works, that should hopefully translate into longer-term savings.

Crock pots are the best. We get a pork butt for under a dollar a pound, spice it, let it cook all day, and have delicious pulled pork all week. There are tons of things you can cook with them, and they're pretty cheap as far as kitchen appliances go.

GREAT JOB on the crockpot! (What, no epic tale of getting it at a yard sale or goodwill? :-p )

A jar of pickled artichokes, about three lbs of on-sale chicken breast meat and you've got awesome eating for at least two days for  five bucks or less.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 08, 2015, 06:51:30 AM
I find chicken breast comes out awful in a slow cooker, but thighs (typically even cheaper) work really well in long/slow cooking applications. Breast meat is too lean and can really dry out and get tough.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 08, 2015, 08:12:48 AM
On track still but wavering over some (wanted but not needed) items that have been on my list for ages which are in the labor day sales. Trying to convince myself to wait til black friday. Urgh. Other than that not too many fails and at $140 so far this month (a good chunk of this was groceries and medicine). Have done 5 no spend days this month already which seems to be the real driver of the sucess. I have also still done a nusmber of fun things so its felt balanced.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: AllieVaulter on September 08, 2015, 10:51:19 AM
DH and I were gone all weekend for a wedding.  We got back super late on Sunday (1am, technically Monday morning).  I had to work Monday, but I knew we didn't have anything to eat for dinner.  I left DH the task of determining what we'd eat for dinner and grocery shopping so we could make it that night. 

I got home last night and not only had he made dinner, but he'd figured out a dinner that we didn't even have to grocery shop for!  Mmmm tuna curry.  He even made a big batch of it, so it should last us for a while.  :)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Alchemilla on September 08, 2015, 11:21:15 AM
Going well so far and alcohol free. Lift sharing to save diesel.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 08, 2015, 11:37:42 AM
I've cut out buying junk food snacks. Eating popcorn or making blueberry tea biscuits from the cupboard/freezer supplies.

Still having a glass of wine with dinner, but drinking cabernet/merlot from a box instead of bordeaux from a bottle. Have also cut out a Bailey's and milk nightcap. I'll save that for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 08, 2015, 01:30:08 PM
I got a job! This is both good, because yay- money, and bad because- boo, need to buy some more scrubs.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 08, 2015, 02:28:01 PM
I got a job! This is both good, because yay- money, and bad because- boo, need to buy some more scrubs.

Congrats! I know it took you a while. Hope it works out for you :)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 08, 2015, 03:06:41 PM
I got a job! This is both good, because yay- money, and bad because- boo, need to buy some more scrubs.

Congrats! I know it took you a while. Hope it works out for you :)

Thanks, Chief! Yeah, felt like it took forever- really it was about 1.5 months of hard searching, which I guess isn't awful, but sure didn't feel great! Competitive market up here for new grads. Your post on the Emotional Balance Sheet was actually what finally pushed me to take it. Terrible pay compared to other jobs in my field, but it'd going to be a pretty amazing experience, and less stressful than a lot of other medical settings. I think it'll be a worthwhile trade off.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: wordnerd on September 08, 2015, 05:23:08 PM
I got a job! This is both good, because yay- money, and bad because- boo, need to buy some more scrubs.

Congrats! I know it took you a while. Hope it works out for you :)

Thanks, Chief! Yeah, felt like it took forever- really it was about 1.5 months of hard searching, which I guess isn't awful, but sure didn't feel great! Competitive market up here for new grads. Your post on the Emotional Balance Sheet was actually what finally pushed me to take it. Terrible pay compared to other jobs in my field, but it'd going to be a pretty amazing experience, and less stressful than a lot of other medical settings. I think it'll be a worthwhile trade off.

Great news! Congrats!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 08, 2015, 06:31:34 PM
Have a lovely economical weekend planned. Helping out with sports on Friday, hiking on Saturday, party at a friends on Saturday night (with a family dinner at a restaurant in between... Going with a group so it will be split bills but a cheap restaurant so I can manage this, it's rare to be able to get us all in one room) and lunch at my boss's house on Sunday (as a thank you for our team... How sweet!). Will need to buy a tank of petrol, but all in I expect to pay $50 for fuel and $20 for the restaurant. I will also need some groceries (another $50 or so). I think I can be at $250 or so half way through the month so on track for only spending $500 this month with the exception of rent and bills (phone/internet/utilities/vet). This is a gigantic improvement over other months :-)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 08, 2015, 07:38:55 PM
I think I can be at $250 or so half way through the month so on track for only spending $500 this month with the exception of rent and bills (phone/internet/utilities/vet). This is a gigantic improvement over other months :-)

Good for you! Sounds like a fun weekend planned.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: plugging away on September 09, 2015, 01:22:08 PM
I'll report in. My goal for Savetember was zero discretionary spending. I've blown that already on the 5th I spent $12.57 on gas for my dirt bike but only burned up a quarter of it (however that was really fun :-). Today was $28 on school pictures so up to $40.57 already and it is only the 9th. This is an interesting experience as I've never focused on a no-spend month. I'm actually finding it relaxing and relieving  me of chores to go get this or that or do this or that. I don't even have to debate anything because the answer is no or wait until October. It is like a big fat easy button.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 09, 2015, 06:22:43 PM
Urgh ended up taking the guy I am sort of seeing to the pub for his birthday which was $19 (ouch! I forgot how expensive drinking was) but it was a nice night and I think I can still come in budget for the month. I am actually not finding $500 for everything except bills to be too painful, so it's certainly making me reassess my normal budget. I could do this every month as long as I had a holiday bucket and a clothes bucket. (So not ready to do no clothes shopping long term. The attrition rate is shocking! But lately have been focusing on only replacements for broken stuff with no additons to the wardrobe. )
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 09, 2015, 08:39:53 PM
Broke my 'no alcohol' plan to celebrate me getting a job. It'll be rolled into the general grocery budget. We got a bota box, and it was on sale ($16.99) and then ibotta is doing a $1 rebate, so it works out to a $4/bottle price. And luckily we didn't do it as an impulse purchase- we thought about it, we haven't bought alcohol in over a month, and we're sharing with friends for a celebration. Seemed reasonable, although not in keeping with our original plan.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 10, 2015, 03:44:29 AM
Savetember is rapidly becoming "zero food wastage" and "eat all the food in the house" month. I am literally planning how many free meals I can score. This weekend I am on track for 3 (friends catering for me at their houses) so not only am I not spending money going out, I am going to be able to avoid food shopping until Sunday (with the exception of bread... Need bread).
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 10, 2015, 04:23:56 AM
I bumped up my 401(k) contribution to 30% for the rest of the year.  With matching and everything, that means a total of 38%!  Still won't max it out, but at least I'll make up for some lost time.

Still eating the pot roast I made with my crockpot on Monday.  I'm pretty certain I can make it last until the weekend.

I also got my coworkers involved to remind me to call the landlord to get the refridgerator/freezer replaced (I get so caught up with my job that I completely forget about things like that until it's time to go home.)  So now I have a working freezer again!

I'm also finally getting my ex-girlfriend off of my cell phone plan.  That will save a bunch!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Nancy on September 10, 2015, 04:58:54 AM
Savetember is rapidly becoming "zero food wastage" and "eat all the food in the house" month. I am literally planning how many free meals I can score. This weekend I am on track for 3 (friends catering for me at their houses) so not only am I not spending money going out, I am going to be able to avoid food shopping until Sunday (with the exception of bread... Need bread).

Nice! I loathe food waste, but this challenge has made me realize how deep my stocking up tendency is. Usually if I'm running low on something, I'll buy its backup so I'm never in a position where I'm baking somethng and find out I have no yeast. This month, there have been so many times where I've held a replacement item in my hand at the grocery store, knew its counterpart at my house would not last the month, willed myself to put the item back on the shelf,  and then figured out a recipe substitution with items I already have. I'm glad I didn't have time to stock up before starting this challenge.

Free fruit at work has been a major score for me, but the reason I've been crushing my food budget is the ample produce from my veg garden. It's astonishing how much food it produces.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 10, 2015, 06:08:56 AM
Tommorrow morning is tinned salsa beans and egg for breakfast... The bread at the convinience store was $7 and I didn't have time to get to the supermarket (where it is $2) so the challenge made me consider a non toast breakfast.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Anje on September 10, 2015, 07:14:26 AM
So far this month:
$ 60 for petrol (one tank that will last me 2/3 of a month)
$ 105 for food for 2 weeks.
$ 6 for the catchall-cathegory of random things. Went towards fishing equipment - so far got in return 3 portions of fish.

So far so good.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on September 10, 2015, 08:08:38 AM
I bumped up my 401(k) contribution to 30% for the rest of the year.  With matching and everything, that means a total of 38%!  Still won't max it out, but at least I'll make up for some lost time.

Still eating the pot roast I made with my crockpot on Monday.  I'm pretty certain I can make it last until the weekend.

I also got my coworkers involved to remind me to call the landlord to get the refridgerator/freezer replaced (I get so caught up with my job that I completely forget about things like that until it's time to go home.)  So now I have a working freezer again!

I'm also finally getting my ex-girlfriend off of my cell phone plan.  That will save a bunch!

Good for you! You are just moving along in every way.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: mom22boys on September 10, 2015, 12:14:45 PM
Progress so far:

1 - 401K @15% and MEGA back door @38% of my pay check ....can't wait until pay day!
2 - Still waiting to sell my stock. Have a price in mind for the stock to hit before I sell. I have plenty in Efund just incase it takes a while.
3 - $0 going out to eat
4 - Groceries at $82.51 (love YNAB for tracking to the penny). Like a few others, I'm trying to use what's in my freezer/pantry.
5 - $68 on unnecessary purchases. Immersion blender (to make more mayo/sauces at home for Whole30 challenge), bathroom mat (since I decided I WON'T turn on my in floor heat in my bathroom this winter, save $$$) and a padded mat for in front of the stove (since I'm cooking everything at home this month). I got them all at Costco on sale, not that it makes the purchases more justified.  But, to make up for this, I'm going to sell some things on my local FB garage sale site.

I'm considering selling a fancy pants buffet which I paid $2500 for before my MMM discovery (major face punch delivered already by myself). I might see if I can see it for $1300.  Not sure if high tickets items will sell on the FB garage sale site though.  Still decided on whether to try it or not.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 10, 2015, 01:43:25 PM
Here to deliver myself a face punch:

Just took 8 year old son and I to McDonald's for lunch on our way home from ER. He had jammed his finger on a basketball last night at the neighbours and this morning its all swollen. Turns out its only sprained. He is in a little splint.

At the very least, I'm in Canada so didn't have to pay for said ER visit :-/ It was total sympathy food and I just couldn't face coming home and cooking lunch. What a wimp.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: johnny847 on September 10, 2015, 04:48:53 PM
My goal was zero non grocery spending. Strictly interpreted I have failed, but here's why:

I bought 2x $500 Visa gift cards that have a $5.95 fee, but this was to meet a minimum spend requirement for my BoA travel rewards card which has a $200 signup bonus.
I booked tickets for myself and my parents to go on vacation to New Orleans. I used miles and only paid 9/11 security fees of $5.60 per segment.
I bought little Dixie cups to ice my knee with. Cost $2.46.

The first one "doesn't count" because I will more than make up for it when the signup bonus posts.
The second one "doesn't count" because I would have had to spend more miles (and may not actually had enough) if I forced myself to book it later. The alternative was of course not to book these tickets at all and not go on vacation. But I literally have more miles than I know what to do with. Also, my parents will be paying for basically everything else on this trip so it costs me next to nothing to go.
The third one...I actually kinda forgot that I had a no spending thing going on when I bought these. No excuse here. At least they were only $2.46.

Incidentally, I haven't bought any groceries yet this month, but I will soon.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: lbmustache on September 10, 2015, 06:11:11 PM
Here to deliver myself a face punch:

Just took 8 year old son and I to McDonald's for lunch on our way home from ER. He had jammed his finger on a basketball last night at the neighbours and this morning its all swollen. Turns out its only sprained. He is in a little splint.

At the very least, I'm in Canada so didn't have to pay for said ER visit :-/ It was total sympathy food and I just couldn't face coming home and cooking lunch. What a wimp.

Aw well, it's an injury. A rare treat isn't too bad. For a mustachian twist, there are more expensive places than McDonald's. :P

Grocery spending is going well this month. On track to spend $150-$200 instead of $200-$250.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bajadoc on September 10, 2015, 08:11:43 PM
"Savetember," I love that. I have it easy, I enjoy saving more than spending. The dear wife is coming along, slowly but surly.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Anje on September 11, 2015, 04:58:07 AM
So far this month:
$ 60 for petrol (one tank that will last me 2/3 of a month)
$ 105 for food for 2 weeks.
$ 6 for the catchall-cathegory of random things. Went towards fishing equipment - so far got in return 3 portions of fish.

So far so good.
Went to store to get milk last night. Found ground beef and mozarella on sale due to short expiration date. The rest, as they say, is history. Future me will feast on cheap lasagne. $19 out.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: JJNL on September 11, 2015, 05:32:02 AM
Here for an update. My goal was to reduce spending on groceries. So far, I am on schedule to do that. Here are the numbers:

Week 1: 27 euros at Lidl
Week 2: 3,70 at the Turkish greengrocers' and 17,74 euros at Dirk supermarket (= shopping for next week I did today)

The coming weeks' numbers are partially so good because I had the flu for a few days and hence ate less so had food leftover. However, I've noticed that I ALWAYS have food left over: I am basically forever eating last week's veggies. This is why I tend to go for things that will keep, that means I don't have to throw them out at least... Will try to stop myself from overshopping.

Also, I've devised a tie-in project: cook with 1 weird back-of-cupboard ingredient a week. I like to experiment and try new things in the kitchen, but this does tend to lead to leftover dry ingredients languishing at the back of my cupboards. This week's intended victim: polenta. Bought a 1kg bag of it to use as a breakfast staple while hiking, but have never really learnt to cook anything else with it (and prefer a yoghurt and muesli breakfast while not hiking). On the menu for this week is a veggie-and-polenta-casserole from BudgetBytes. Yumyum (I hope)!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 11, 2015, 06:08:24 AM
Decided to spend an extra $12ish to buy fruit leather trays for my dehydrator for apple and pumpkin season.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kander on September 11, 2015, 11:32:51 AM
Here to deliver myself a face punch:

Just took 8 year old son and I to McDonald's for lunch on our way home from ER. He had jammed his finger on a basketball last night at the neighbours and this morning its all swollen. Turns out its only sprained. He is in a little splint.

At the very least, I'm in Canada so didn't have to pay for said ER visit :-/ It was total sympathy food and I just couldn't face coming home and cooking lunch. What a wimp.

Don't be to hard on yourself, 1967mama. Everyone needs comfort food sometimes and I think that a visit at the ER is a very good reason.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: wordnerd on September 11, 2015, 07:29:33 PM
I've bought lunch at work a couple of times so far this month. I know I'm doing it because I've been stressed, but I need to get back on track. <le sigh>
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 12, 2015, 05:37:01 PM
urgh, my plans for an economical weekend got derailed :-(
my friend was supposed to cook me dinner on Friday night but when I got to her house she'd had a full on day at work, wasn't organised and wanted pizza. So I ended up paying my share ($9) towards it. I did however minimise the damage by offering to do the pick-up run and using a coupon. My friend did provide beer though and we had a nice Friday night so that ok. My plans for a hike were destroyed by a thunderstorm, so we ended up doing lunch, a movie and a session at the rockclimbing gym at a cost to me of $50 (it was my turn to pay for food, but we used coupons for the cinema and the climbing gym). This is a LOT more money than what I would even normally spend on a weekend but it was a good day.  On the upside I still haven't had to buy petrol (as the movie/climbing gym were close to home, and we drove in and walked to remaining portion to avoid paying for parking (as this it's cheaper to drive than use the bus). Next two weekends should be pretty cheap: next weekend, staying at my parents house and catching up with friends from that town. Will need to buy petrol ($50) and will likely go to the brewpub for lunch (approx $25), but already have beer in the fridge to take to the house party.
The weekend after is a sports competition. I still need to pay comp fees (approx $20) but beyond that should be able to have a cheap weekend. I am sure there will be a "wind down" drink to buy at the pub ($5 or so) but I don't expect to spend a ton of money. Despite yeasterday's blow out, I think I can still get through this month with all Non-Bill spending under $500 as long as I keep focused on the groceries. The only other stuff I need to pay for is sports classes (about 5 of them between now and the end of the month at $8 each).
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Nancy on September 12, 2015, 05:45:56 PM
Earpiece on my sunglassses broke. Found a stick, whittled a new earpiece, and stuck it on with tape. Perfectly good! Sunglasses live another day.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 13, 2015, 08:57:34 AM
We still haven't had to buy gas this month, which is awesome. DH hasn't had to travel for work this month yet, and we haven't been out of town to visit our families, so that saves on spending. Otherwise, we did quite a few miles out to a hike (90 miles total), but it was totally worth it and we're still over 1/2 tank. Wondering how long we can last! Probably until I start driving for work next week, depending on my schedule.

Considering most months we have 4 or 5 fill ups, this is exciting. (To be fair, we usually fill up at 1/4-1/3 tank remaining; for DH's unpredictable work, it's a good idea to keep the car plenty full).

Buying a birthday present for a family member today. Using a gift card I got from selling books a while back, and combining that with a craigslist sale since it'll take me downtown. So we'll basically make money on buying this relative a birthday present! Wish I had saved the books from the last goodwill donation to resell those, too, for more credit, but I didn't think we'd be headed downtown any time soon. That'll be the plan for the future though!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 13, 2015, 09:44:47 AM
Here's an update.

So far I've spent $405.98 this month.  That includes everything, such as phone, internet, Netflix, food, etc.

That averages to just over $31 per day.

Actually, this is a marked improvement over this time last month, but it's just too much.  Hopefully with the Crockpot, food costs will go down (they already have), and the phone will go down once the ex is off.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: lbmustache on September 13, 2015, 10:14:05 AM
Ralph's was having a massive sale on good quality chicken. 50% off!!! Got a ton of drumsticks - between them and rice I will have some good cheap meals for the rest of this week.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 13, 2015, 05:25:58 PM
Here's an update.

So far I've spent $405.98 this month.  That includes everything, such as phone, internet, Netflix, food, etc.

That averages to just over $31 per day.

Actually, this is a marked improvement over this time last month, but it's just too much.  Hopefully with the Crockpot, food costs will go down (they already have), and the phone will go down once the ex is off.

For some of us a $0 month may not be desirable. I think the idea of Savetember is to have a "bad-ass" month, whatever that is for you. I'm looking at dropping discretionary spend by 65% this month. It's still a lot more than $0, but the benefit is I have been having a great month and have still be able to socialise and as a result will be drawing up a new budget that makes every month look a lot more like Savetember. I can't believe how much waste there was previously (lifestyle inflation was the culprit as my wages have risen rapidly over the last three years). So Savetember could just be about re-setting lifestyle inflation for you... that's what it is for me.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 13, 2015, 06:24:15 PM
Here's an update.

So far I've spent $405.98 this month.  That includes everything, such as phone, internet, Netflix, food, etc.

That averages to just over $31 per day.

Actually, this is a marked improvement over this time last month, but it's just too much.  Hopefully with the Crockpot, food costs will go down (they already have), and the phone will go down once the ex is off.

For some of us a $0 month may not be desirable. I think the idea of Savetember is to have a "bad-ass" month, whatever that is for you. I'm looking at dropping discretionary spend by 65% this month. It's still a lot more than $0, but the benefit is I have been having a great month and have still be able to socialise and as a result will be drawing up a new budget that makes every month look a lot more like Savetember. I can't believe how much waste there was previously (lifestyle inflation was the culprit as my wages have risen rapidly over the last three years). So Savetember could just be about re-setting lifestyle inflation for you... that's what it is for me.
Thank you for your kind words.  I might come across as negative, but that's just because I want to do so much better.

The truth is, I really am pretty happy with life.  I've accelerated some plans, and I have a renewed focus about my current life goals.  And I continue to be amazed at life's little things.  For example, the new freezer in my apartment froze a pork roast solid in only a couple of hours.  I thought that was just the craziest thing (the old freezer had completely forgotten how to freeze anything.)  I'm amazed at how we can communicate on opposite ends of the Earth with really no effort at all.  It's truly a wonderful life.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 13, 2015, 06:26:37 PM
Agreed. I am also trying to focus on the good things in life and what I want out of life this month. Like you, always wanting to be more bad ass and save more, but pretty happy with the progression on the way. And to the people who can do a $0 month, that's awesome!!!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 14, 2015, 06:27:12 AM
Ended up needing to spend a lot of $ this weekend. Bought a staple gun and a chem sprayer for my side job business (covered with my earnings but still a bummer, as I try to save 100% of my earnings from that). Decided that I really needed a boiling water bath canning pot that didn't boil over when doing quarts, so splurged on a rather nice 8 gallon  stainless steel brew kettle/stock pot that will have utility beyond canning - and worked marvelously yesterday when I put up 23 quarts of tomatoes.

Also spent over $100 at the FM but so far all of our food spending has been within budget. Should eke out under budget even with a few bushels of apples picked later this week or next week.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rosy on September 15, 2015, 08:55:04 AM
Well, so far the projected savings are on target and even surpassed by $889. Yay!:)

Food I am dissecting down to the penny for the first time ever this month - so, we'll see what the bottomline looks like. So far it doesn't look too far out of line, but of course there will be room for improvement, which is the reason for this exercise.

Eating out has almost tripled this month, mostly due to birthday celebrations and Mr. R. taking a vacation, so we are indulging ourselves a bit. Needed a new battery for my car and spent too much on gift cards for the b-days (in my opinion, not Mr. R's)
I'd rather see a bit more cash in his account.

Having some financial discussions while he's off - funny how it is much easier to discuss over a margarita on the beach:)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 15, 2015, 09:45:49 AM
Some planned spending:

Bought 2 new scrub tops for my new(!!!) job. Realized I could re-use the pants from school, since they didn't have the school logo, just the tops. Saved about $30 there. Although now my pants are black and navy, and it's hard to find tops that match both those colors. I think I did a reasonable job, though. So now I have 3 pants and 3 tops, which will get me through 3 12's in a row. Anything shorter than a 12 and I can just do laundry if I have a longer string of shifts.

I slightly "cheated" the budget though. We still had a MasterCard gift card from our wedding, for $50, so we used that for the tops. Figured it counted as 'starting up our married life' expenses, and now I won't lose the gift card before I get a chance to use it!

I have a 10% off lifetime loyalty card which really impressed the cashier lady- I guess they gave them out "AGES AND AGES ago"- I got mine back in high school because they carried the cheapest dress socks. Made me laugh/feel old. It was the second one she's ever seen, and she's worked for the company for 3 years. Glad I kept it for all these years, because they changed their computer systems too, so it's only if you still have the physical card will they honor it.

All told, the 2 tops came to $43. We used another $3 to get DH a lacrosse ball for pressure point work, and then I used the rest for a coffee. First coffee we bought out in over a month! All of it went on the gift card, which is now used up.

A few miscellaneous expenses came up, but I think all are justified. We had to buy an extension cord ($6.99 on amazon) so that we can easily move the AC unit from one room to another- saves us having to buy a separate dehumidifier, since it has a "dry" setting. So $7 to avoid spending over $100. We also need to buy new bolts for our toilet seat. Should only be a couple bucks, but has to be spent- one of the bolts sheared clean off. Stupid plastic junk. And we'll have to renew registration on the car soon, and get environmental testing- forgot these expenses in the estimate of this month.

Otherwise, we're still on track this month. Keeping our spending low. Still haven't filled our cars yet, but will need to Thursday. Grocery spending is a bit high, because it's been a restocking month, but it's still within budget. (Also, we include meds in this, which we only have to buy every few months, and they're all falling on this month).

All in all, it's going pretty well! Still doing $200/week into DH's tIRA. So there will be about $1,200 total "financial" spending for this month- $800 into IRA, $400 went to loans.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: velocistar237 on September 16, 2015, 11:44:05 AM
We've spent about 30% less on food, just by eyeballing which calories are expensive and not eating as much of those. We did get a parking ticket, which made for a very not fun evening. It motivated me to sell some things I've been meaning to sell. I now have several items listed on eBay. We had a stroller with a snapped frame, and I fixed it and sold it on Craigslist for $45. There's a good possibility that we'll come in at $500 less than a typical month, even with the parking ticket, and income should be a little higher than normal, too. We'll see how it goes.

My wife is taking a personal finance class and has been looking a lot more at our finances. She said she was surprised at the sheer volume of little purchases that add up. If we can get used to this level of spending, it could pull retirement in by about a year.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Susan on September 17, 2015, 01:42:15 PM
So far, I've spent 60 apart from groceries. Most of it (48) was spent on gifts. The rest on a few beers and some personal care supplies. Pretty happy with this month up till now.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 18, 2015, 08:36:13 AM
Ugh, I hate the unexpected charges. Had a $75 service fee for our AmEx Blue Preferred Card. And in a way it doesn't "count", because we're getting a $150 statement credit next month for meeting the spending limit, but Mint shows it as an outflow and so it sticks in my mind that way.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Megma on September 18, 2015, 01:44:59 PM
I'm in for Savetember! August hit me hard - tenant in my extra room moved out at the beginning of the month = no rent and return of majority of a security deposit. I don't even get lower utility bills because I don't pay them!

Groceries were also over budget for August (joint bday party for me and bf resulting in more food and booze than normal) so I want to get that under control. I will be gone for a full week for a work trip but my dad will be staying with us another week so we'll see how that pans out.

Tacked on to my work trip I have 2 days of vacation in a very pricey city with a spendy friend, I will try to keep the meal/shopping costs under control and I already paid for my extra hotel nights. I am very unlikely to ever visit this city again in my life so I also want to enjoy it a little bit.

So my Goals are:
- Spend overall under my monthly budget (Aug was over!), including the $150 in additional taxes I need to pay and my trip
- Keep Groceries & Restaurants (harder than normal with dad visiting & vacation) under budget for the month
- Keep overall vacation days spending below $250 for food/shopping - this is a lot but is is a very expensive city (the Federal per diem rate for meals and incidentals is 183/day!)

Nice seeing everyone's updates!

I'm not doing great...my spending on my trip has been a little high. I had booked a hotel by the metro station BUT since I'm in Middle East it's still hot as hell here so I've succumbed to taxis far too many times. But it's over a 100 degrees at 10pm, higher during the day and humid so whatever.

Tomorrow I'm also going to the fabric market, which is a personal weakness. I'm normally on a self imposed embargo, except for special situations, when I have a chance to buy things that I can't get at all locally (ie on sale isn't a reason).

Ugh so much rationalization...since I've spent nothing at all on gas and only $30 on groceries this month (thanks work travel!) I might still make the total under budget goal, even with the trip.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rosy on September 18, 2015, 02:06:34 PM
Update - just received bonus money $214.75 - so savings have exceeded expectations for the month of September. Yay:)

Budget is on track and so far it looks like the food budget, which I've never itemized before, is looking even better than expected. May be too soon to call it - we'll see.
According to the FDA chart we are thrifty, he he.

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 18, 2015, 03:15:16 PM
forummm and the gang - we at my house are on-target to match August August, even though I've made a couple smallish mistakes, ($25-$35) work done in the past for future savings continues to pay handsome dividends:

- 2 cheap phones $23 (Moto X Androids on Republic Wireless)
- TV antenna and $8 Netflix
- A great deal of insourcing work
- no debt

We may need to sacrifice some money this month for winter prep. I am working on energy-saving insulated window treatments, some custom-designed storm windows (our vinyl windows have no storm windows available....gaa!), and adding solar to the hot water heater.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 18, 2015, 04:22:37 PM
Had a decent amount of food spoil when our fridge was running hot. Stupid me, no excuses, has never once cleaned the condenser coils in 10 years of owning the fridge. *facepalm*

Would blow the grocery budget if I replaced what spoiled and stuck to the original plan but should be able to adapt and get through remainder of month at minimal expense.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rural on September 18, 2015, 04:51:10 PM
Had a decent amount of food spoil when our fridge was running hot. Stupid me, no excuses, has never once cleaned the condenser coils in 10 years of owning the fridge. *facepalm*

Would blow the grocery budget if I replaced what spoiled and stuck to the original plan but should be able to adapt and get through remainder of month at minimal expense.


  Sounds like we live in the same world. We lost everything perishable in the fridge last weekend. Fortunately most everything was in the deep freezer, which is fine.


I'm currently trolling eBay for a part that is no longer manufactured, but if it doesn't turn up in a month or so, I think we're going to "have" to buy new fridge.  Right now we're limping the old one along, kicking it on manually sometimes because the troubled part is the thermostat. We hope. It isn't the compressor, and while the coils were undescribably nasty,  cleaning them has not fixed the intermittent not coming back on problem.


 If we buy, we may very well buy used. Haven't decided yet.


Also this month, we had to pay car insurance. It's budgeted for On a monthly basis, but the six month premium did hit this month.


 I need to cook up some meals to put in the deep freezer, because I don't trust that refrigerator over the course of the long days that we're gone.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 18, 2015, 05:03:39 PM
I can semi-relate to breaking down fridges -- my larger deep freeze is on the fritz. It is running way more than it should. Googling indicated that its either the gasket (we already have to keep a heavy toolbox on the top to keep it closed) or the thermostat. If its the thermostat, I'm not sure that we will replace it as the freezer is already old (at least 15 years) and I have a non-handy husband with a very demanding office/travel job. I saw a much smaller one at Costco yesterday for around $329. I may end up buying a new one for the increased efficiency as well as to allay my fears about the losing the contents which is currently 45 chickens and a dairy box of last spring's side of beef. I have a full cow two sides of beef arriving at the end of October and don't want to be waking in the middle of the night in a cold sweat, wondering if my freezer is working.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Anje on September 18, 2015, 05:19:31 PM

So far this month:
Still at $ 60 for petrol (will need to fill very soon)
$ 198 for food for 3 weeks - I just need fruit and vegies for next week, though. Plan is 250 for the month.
$ 8 for the catchall-cathegory of random things. Went towards fishing equipment and some cotton cloth.

So far still good.
Tomorow I'm stopping by to look at a new pan, though. $ 50 for a replacement for my old and battered one is a very good deal.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Thegoblinchief on September 18, 2015, 05:19:55 PM
1967mama - Would a smaller one give you enough space? Two sides of beef is a LOT of meat. Plan on roughly 5 cuft of freezer space per 100 pounds of meat IIRC.

Rural - with raw produce I wouldn't worry too much about temp fluctuation. So, for the rest of the more sensitive stuff, do you have a cooler/ice chest large enough to fit what you need? Simply keep that stuff in there and rotate reusable ice packs in and out of the deep freeze every 12-24 hours as needed.

There was a homesteading book I read where the family didn't even own a fridge. They used that ice chest method plus the large deep freeze as a matter of course to increase their energy efficiency.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rural on September 18, 2015, 06:36:37 PM
1967mama - Would a smaller one give you enough space? Two sides of beef is a LOT of meat. Plan on roughly 5 cuft of freezer space per 100 pounds of meat IIRC.

Rural - with raw produce I wouldn't worry too much about temp fluctuation. So, for the rest of the more sensitive stuff, do you have a cooler/ice chest large enough to fit what you need? Simply keep that stuff in there and rotate reusable ice packs in and out of the deep freeze every 12-24 hours as needed.

There was a homesteading book I read where the family didn't even own a fridge. They used that ice chest method plus the large deep freeze as a matter of course to increase their energy efficiency.


 Not worrying about produce, you're right  it lived through last weekend, it llived through yesterday afternoon/last night, no problems. I'm doing something sort of like what you mention, but with frozen two-liter bottles of water in the fridge itself. Seems to be keeping my milk cold enough to be just fine when the fridge does go out one frozen two liter on each side of the milk, in direct contact.


 We do have a cooler, but  it currently lives in the car because it's packing my husband's lunch to school every day. He doesn't have access to the faculty lounge like I do to use the refrigerator, and our schedules don't mesh well enough for me to just get it out for him.


 The thing I'm struggling with most is that my meal plan for those long days has relied fairly heavily on leftovers, usually in the crockpot and just reheated when we get home in the evenings. That's what I think is going to have to change I'm thinking of freezing a meal's worth in the deep freezer overnight, taking it out in the morning,  and then if the fridge dies again while we're gone, it just thaws a little faster. I think that would work. 


Also thinking of things I can make fast straight from the deep freezer. French bread pizzas are one definite idea, but when we get home quite late, my level of tired is such that anything that takes more than 10 minutes is right out.  I'm dealing with some chronic pain right now that just wipes me out at the end of a long day, and that's complicating things a little bit.   I may actually buy one or two frozen convenience meals. I hate the things, but I think they're better than a late night emergency run for fast food somewhere,  especially given how far it is to a fast food place from here.


 Damn, writing all that out makes me wonder if I shouldn't just give up and buy a refrigerator. Don't wanna, though.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 19, 2015, 07:50:04 PM
Had a stroke of good luck today! Was starting to crave a meal out (no restaurant spending for nearly 2 months now). Shortly before dinner time, our neighbor texted and offered us a free cheese pizza! She had babysat for the owner, but is on a diet right now. Large, delicious, perfectly cooked pizza. Easily a $25 pizza she gifted us.

Now to remember to scoop the communal yard for dog poo tomorrow to maintain neighborliness!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 19, 2015, 08:36:51 PM
GC,

I know. It really wouldn't be enough freezer space, even though we have the other smaller deep freeze (10 cu. ft) in the basement. Ugh, I don't want to have to buy another big freezer, but I suppose I could give one to one of the older kids when they start their own homes. We are kind of at critical mass with the oldest turning 24 this fall (still living at home) and the youngest at 8 and a lot of them in between. So we are thinking about downsizing the home within the next 5 years as the oldest 4 move out. We shall see. Unfortunately, its my larger freezer (14 cu. ft) that is dying. I guess it is wishful thinking that I could get away with it at this time...haha.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Alchemilla on September 20, 2015, 01:33:32 AM
Not doing too badly here except for one DD needing new ballet shoes and the other new wellies. Cheap wellies last her about a fortnight.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: trplcrwnr on September 20, 2015, 05:27:33 PM
My Savetember has not been as successful as I had hoped.

I decided that it was time to move/find a new job which turned into a road trip (approx. $300) for a job that will pay more in a higher col but more livable area (still waiting on call back).

A small medical procedure ($50) and a (much needed time with family) flight home ($150).  Total $500

10 more days to refocus before trying again in "Soctober?"

Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Melody on September 23, 2015, 02:59:54 AM
Well I stuffed up today ... Have been looking for a good hiking/travel pack for a while and haven't seen one I liked that met all my requirements, of course today one of the outdoors stores was having a sale so I couldn't resist peeking in... And there is was, my dream pack marked down from $230 to $140. Savetember went out the window as I have been looking for one that had all the features I wanted at a good price (women's harness, light weight, not a bright colour, waterproof, camelback, big enough for an overnight hike, not so big I feel silly carrying it on a day hike). I don't feel too bad as this has been on my want list for about 6 months and I have an overnight hike planned in two weeks time plus a trip to New Zealand (loads of hikes planned) at the end of the year.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 23, 2015, 09:41:50 AM
Savetember is going well, although we will be tight on the groceries. Stocking up this month was a huge factor. We also decided to combine supplements/pharmacy with our groceries, since they come with our subscribe and save order. It's making me feel the squeeze a bit, but I like it- I was hesitant to lower the numerical goal for our grocery budget (DH already things $800 for 3 adults and 2 dogs is too low)- so this is a good way to push ourselves without moving the number we're aiming for.

We'll see how clever I feel if we break our 3 month run of meeting grocery goals!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: AllieVaulter on September 23, 2015, 10:20:42 AM
Our Savetember is going a bit differently than I expected it to.  We'll be saving more than usual this month, but not because we spent less.  We just made more money than normal.  Our food expenses are pretty low for the month ($167 for two people), but we also had some extraneous purchases (gifts, house guests, travel, etc) which bumped us up to a bit higher than normal.  But my husband picked up some odd jobs over the month and I picked up an overload at work.  So... success?
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: nereo on September 23, 2015, 12:24:56 PM
Our Savetember isn't going so well.  Department funding got cut, so we lost about 40% of our income.  Looks like we'll still be in the black, but September certainly won't see the savings rate we've had recently.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 23, 2015, 05:14:21 PM
I'm sorry to hear that nereo.  I'm glad to hear that you're in the black this month, at least!

One week left of Savetember, and things look good here so far.  My spending looks to be $300 less than last month, and there's still fat to cut.
Based on MMM's definitions, I currently have a savings rate of 58% for the month.  That makes me pretty happy!
Plus this month I finally opened up a Roth IRA! And I have another pay period coming up! (Of course I still have to pay for rent.  I budget it a month in advance.)
Thank you, Savetember!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Nancy on September 23, 2015, 06:01:58 PM
Nice, Tigerpine!

I am within all of my lowered budgets, and I had no unplanned spending. Huzzah! Even my Ting bill was lower this month, which was a surprise.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: kander on September 26, 2015, 12:37:42 PM
Savetember changed into spendtember :( Im sorry :(
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: 1967mama on September 26, 2015, 02:24:48 PM
Savetember changed into spendtember :( Im sorry :(

+1
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Anje on September 26, 2015, 02:27:17 PM
So far this month:
At 99 for petrol (this is right on budget)
$ 245 for food - Plan was 250 for the month. This was harder than expexted. I ate a lot from pantry and freezer and still ended up making a lot of compromizes.
$ 36 for the catchall-cathegory of random things.
$ 25 for clothing (winter is here and I bought new thick tights and some socks)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 27, 2015, 06:46:29 AM
Savetember has been a month of exciting conflict between frugal and spend at The House of mefla!

Obstacles and Money Challenges:
- $30: wedding gift
- $300: birthday
- $45: DW and DH work lunches
- $44: DW World Market (Items may go back today. Win!)
- $20: Me,  Amazon. Not planned. Efficiency benefit in October and onward - let's watch and see.
- $128: termite inspection. (Thanks forummm for creating this thread. Normally I would forget that annual cost...)

Successes: ($$ values are cash input or conservative estimates of savings)
- $40 Side Gig: Sold duck eggs
- $10 Side Gig: sold some homebrew
- $30 Savings: Killer breakfast and lunch omelets with duck eggs
- $100 Insourcing Savings: 2 synthetic oil changes, $26 each.
- $60 Savings Gasoline: GAS BUDDY has been a huge help. Auto fuel costs for Savetember WILL be UNDER $60, $125 budgeted.

Savings:
- $2000 for Roth IRA (8/31)
- $6000 to Home Mortgage Principal Reduction
- $2890 to 401k
- $2000 to restore emergency fund (Used for Roth IRA. Will do it again in October if equity bargains continue.)

(Not high compared to, say, http://www.millionaireeducator.com/our-story (http://www.millionaireeducator.com/our-story) it's >50% of our monthly gross income.)

Remember:
Four more days left in SAVEtember, 10% of the 30 day month, so you can still make a big impact this month and set yourself up for success next month.  October is a three paycheck month for many of us. Equity markets are down so they are a bargain right now. Don't give up even if it's been "Setback September", If you can, increase your 401k equity buying now! Optimism and Badassity never go out of style! What have you done to make your SAVEtember even more successful?

(EDITS: Removed items that won't bear savings in SAVEtember. Improved accuracy of some $$ amounts. Trimmed up verbage.)
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 27, 2015, 09:03:00 AM
Well, my Savetember was going pretty well, until yesterday. Planned expense: DH and I went and had drinks with a friend. This was actually meant as a "savings" option, since it replaced the once this month we planned on going to a restaurant, and was much cheaper. But we were SPOT ON at the top of our grocery budget, and we ended up with 6 people (!!!) over last night, who of course we fed and gave drinks to. So now we're $25 above our budget, plus we went through food I thought would last the week, so we will have to make another trip this month still most likely. We're trying to turn it around though. DH is on board to try and "pantry/freezer shop" to try and avoid a trip.

I liked Mefla's format, so I'm going to use it.

Obstacles:
- Cars! We had a $77 title change fee, a $21 DEQ fee, and a $124 registration fee to pay. We also forgot the checkbook (doh!) so add another $3.50 for ATM charges. Also on this all day outing we got coffee, but luckily that money was still on our Starbucks app.
-High grocery cost month. Brother was home more, and has had friends over fairly often. It was also a stock-up month. We will probably end up at about $850/$800 budget.
-Bought Bota Boxes twice this month. Had planned on no alcohol purchases again this month.
-Parking fees. DH is back in classes, and now has to drive to campus (right after work, so can't transit). Luckily, he found a cheaper lot than a campus parking pass would cost. Still, this'll be about $50/month from here on out. $16 this month though.

Successes:
-Birthday gift for parent came off a gift card we got from selling books.
-$1,000 into DH's IRA, and $400 towards SLs
-Only $92 spent on gas this month. Last month was $360. Sadly, next month will go back up again as DH travels more and I work more days.
-No restaurants! Just went out and had 1 drink apiece with a friend.
-I got a job! So, additional income. This month will only be about $400 extra, but will increase in the future.
-Had to buy scrubs, used a gift card left over from the wedding.
-Rocked the Ibotta and Checkout51 rebates this month. I think we're up to ~$13 between the two apps. Since we buy very little name-brand stuff, this is exciting.
-No clothes budget, no entertainment budget, we've lumped supplements/pet food/household goods into our grocery budget.

Too early to make the FINAL call, but so far we've spent $4,346- if we take away Brother's share and our investments and SL payment, that is $2,166.

So we should end up with an extra $617 cash from this month; plus the debt and investments, we Savetember'd $2,024

Edit: I knew that seemed too high! Brother's payment for last month's expenses didn't come through until this month, so I was double counting payments ultimately. Fixed the #s above! $700 less than I thought, but still great!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 27, 2015, 09:13:06 AM
....so now we're $25 above our budget, plus we went through food I thought would last the week, so we will have to make another trip this month still most likely. We're trying to turn it around though. DH is on board to try and "pantry/freezer shop" to try and avoid a trip.

I liked Mefla's format, so I'm going to use it.
...
So we should end up with an extra $1,317 cash from this month; plus the debt and investments, we Savetember'd $2,724

Thanks for the props, BJ! I want people to see that we all deal with setbacks and still overcome and save. Congratulations on no restaurants and the new job! I envy your no-restaurant month!!! (Plus I went back and rolled part of my Amazon into groceries, two items were important supplements...)

BTW: That $300 birthday was dinner for my family at the kind of restaurant we NEVER EVER go to. But it was a two-for-one birthday celebration and the DW is still beaming and happy from it today. This morning she's already pitching in to help increase savings in October. I asked her to please have no guilt because I had anticipated and adjusted. (In one of my earlier postings in this thread. I adjusted and predicted $300 in August. I was off by $1.82.) Goes to show that "investments come in all kinds...."

In your case, I'm betting that dinner you hosted will pay dividends in other ways?
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Bracken_Joy on September 27, 2015, 09:25:20 AM
....so now we're $25 above our budget, plus we went through food I thought would last the week, so we will have to make another trip this month still most likely. We're trying to turn it around though. DH is on board to try and "pantry/freezer shop" to try and avoid a trip.

I liked Mefla's format, so I'm going to use it.
...
So we should end up with an extra $1,317 cash from this month; plus the debt and investments, we Savetember'd $2,724

Thanks for the props, BJ! I want people to see more realism in this thread, that we all deal with setbacks and still overcome and save. Congratulations on no restaurants and the new job! I envy your no-restaurant month!!! (Plus I went back and rolled part of my Amazon into groceries, two items were important supplements...)

BTW: That $300 birthday was dinner for my family at the kind of restaurant we NEVER EVER go to. But it was a two-for-one birthday celebration and the DW is still beaming and happy from it today. This morning she's already pitching in to help increase savings in October. I asked her to have NO GUILT, because I had anticipated and adjusted. (Predicted $300 in August. I was off by $1.82.) Goes to show that "investments come in all kinds...."

In your case, I'm betting that dinner you hosted will pay dividends in other ways?

It absolutely will. One guest was the reason DH and I started dating, and our longest-standing friend for both of us. Our relationship with him has paid dividends already! The other guests were all area business owners, and I know at least one new business contract grew out of the evening- this doesn't directly benefit us, but it benefits the local economy and that is cool! Also, these folks tend to give us free stuff, so that's always fun =P I end up with high-end fancy pants fashionista stuff I NEVER would own otherwise. Quite funny actually.

Most important, though, is DH and I got a social outlet. Both our jobs are unconventional, so it's easy to feel isolated sometimes. So even while I am bemoaning our lack of dishwasher this morning (OMG the dishes), DH and I have new topics of conversation for a couple weeks!

Your DW's birthday dinner sounds like an EXPERIENCE though, not just a meal. I think the big issue people get into with restaurants is just using them as a very spendy food source, or it's an experience they've had so many times it doesn't enrich them. Do you think it was enriching?

And yes, there can be MANY challenges in a Super Saving Mustachian Month and still have it be a success! I don't think there is such a thing as a "normal" month.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 27, 2015, 10:19:45 AM
This month has been pretty good to me.  I've finally started to take some real action on my savings. I'm also starting to see the fruits of some past decisions.  My goal for August was to begin the recovery from July (negative 29% savings rate!)  This month's goal was to start optimizing my finances.

Keeping with meflas's format:

Obstacles:
Travel! This month I bought a plane ticket for about $350 after discounts so I can visit my family for Thanksgiving.  It was a planned for expense, and it's always good to see the family, but I'll have to find a cheaper way to make it happen.

Successes:
Mobile Phone Would this count for this month or next?  I finally got my ex-girlfriend off of my phone plan!  She refused to take the phone off until I turned off her data.  She made the switch the very next day, and I immediately switched to the lowest data plan (AT&T).  There's room for a lot more improvement on this front, but these changes alone should save me at least $50 on my next bill, and even more after that!  Next month I'll look into Republic Wireless.
Food Until this month, my food budget was  $400 a month.  This month I've brought that down to $289.68.  The crockpot definitely helped make this possible.
Internet In August I bought my own modem and returned the rental to the cable company.  That's $8 a month saved from here on out.  I also 'downgraded' to the basic internet plan.  Combined, these amount to a savings of $28 per month!  The prorated difference was taken off of this month's bill, so I actually got a $0.76 credit.  In other words, internet was essentially free this month.
Gas Only had to fill the tank once for $19.91.  Usually I have to fill up twice.
Laundry I do my wash at coin laundry.  I was able to go two weeks between laundry cycles for the first time!  That saved me $1.  If I can continue this regimen, I should save $3 next month.
Retirement As mentioned earlier, I finally opened up a Roth IRA this month.  I also increased my 401(k) contribution to 33% to make up for lost time.  I still won't max it out for the year, but I'll be closer than I would have been otherwise.

I still have one paycheck coming in and have to pay next month's rent, but barring any unforeseen emergencies, I project my savings rate for the month to be 67%
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 27, 2015, 11:24:15 AM
It absolutely will. One guest was the reason DH and I started dating, and our longest-standing friend for both of us. Our relationship with him has paid dividends already! The other guests were all area business owners, and I know at least one new business contract grew out of the evening- this doesn't directly benefit us, but it benefits the local economy and that is cool! Also, these folks tend to give us free stuff, so that's always fun =P I end up with high-end fancy pants fashionista stuff I NEVER would own otherwise. Quite funny actually.

Most important, though, is DH and I got a social outlet. Both our jobs are unconventional, so it's easy to feel isolated sometimes. So even while I am bemoaning our lack of dishwasher this morning (OMG the dishes), DH and I have new topics of conversation for a couple weeks!

Impressive, actually. That's precisely the kind of investment MMM was talking about in his blog post about "let your tribe enrich you" (or whatever it was). Investing in other people means having access to their eyes, ears and brains. If they are quality people, that access can save one's ass in a time of need.

(I'm not talking here about "using your connections to get something". I mean receiving shared wisdom from others that keeps you from making a mistake or having an avoidable accident or finding out about something beneficial. The one time I've ever met in-person with mustachians had extreme value to me and has helped me immensely.)

Quote
Your DW's birthday dinner sounds like an EXPERIENCE though, not just a meal. I think the big issue people get into with restaurants is just using them as a very spendy food source, or it's an experience they've had so many times it doesn't enrich them. Do you think it was enriching?

Well, you are right. In no way was it only a spendy food source (I like that). It was a birthday thing, a purposeful event I saw coming back in August. I was able to pre-plan, then pre-pay and continue to "pay for it" using meals going forward and other efficiencies I believe will "make up for it" in October.

However, I debated, heavily, with myself about including it in the thread. I don't want to be whiny, but I owe it to forummm and everyone else to be honest, otherwise this thread is a waste of time.  I felt shock and anger when I first realized it was coming. But seeing it early gave me time to ponder it and weigh the cost/benefit. DW REEELY wanted an excellent meal with her sons and their SO's for HER birthday (in October). I delivered on that 110%.

The one true benefit to me? I was able to estimate the upcoming expense so closely, I surprised myself. I estimated $300, it came in at $301.83 with included 20% gratuity. So I know, at least, I've got an accurate sense of what things cost. Maybe it's time for me to go on "The Price is Right!".... :-)

This morning's breakfast and lunch cost me about $1 each - free scrambled eggs, a little shredded cheese and smoked meats, with tea. So I should easily "smudge" the cost away with savings in October.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rural on September 27, 2015, 01:53:30 PM
 We've done pretty well this month, but I'm about to shoot it all to hell and back with medical bills if I can get an appointment time. New symptoms have developed which lead me to believe that what I thought was an effed up shoulder is actually a problem in my neck, likely a disk. Dammit dammit dammit, but it might mean that there's a solution at hand, which would be quite welcome. I've been hurting since January with no end In sight.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: AllieVaulter on September 27, 2015, 11:17:33 PM
So far in Savetember...

Obstacles:
$185 in fuel!  We had two long road trips
$60 in gifts (Wedding, bridal shower, & birthday -- but manged to find some great deals)
$120 for a gym membership.  This was a splurge for DH.  But now we have unlimited access to an indoor rockwall for 4 months, which is a pretty sweet deal for us. 
$27 at restaurants.  A birthday dinner for a friend and another meal.

Successes:
$227 for food (we're usually somewhere in the $300's for food)
$40 saved when we did some troubleshooting & fixed our thermostat rather than buy a new one
$1700 boost in income.  This our big success!  DH installed some windows & siding for a total of $900 this month (still looking for a job using his PhD in Physics).  I picked up an overload at work so I'll earn an extra $800 for the next 3 months. 
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 27, 2015, 11:21:10 PM
Hey, the successes are great!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rosy on September 28, 2015, 02:49:25 PM
We've done pretty well this month, but I'm about to shoot it all to hell and back with medical bills if I can get an appointment time. New symptoms have developed which lead me to believe that what I thought was an effed up shoulder is actually a problem in my neck, likely a disk. Dammit dammit dammit, but it might mean that there's a solution at hand, which would be quite welcome. I've been hurting since January with no end In sight.

@rural Ouch - I hope you will be painfree soon. Sorry about the dip in the finances, but hey, your health is everything and then some.

I played with my numbers today and from here on out to the end of the year it looks promising.

Biggest success my savings rate went up a bit and better yet, I came up with a revised budget that will increase the SR from 51% to 63%.
That is actually so far beyond my expectations that I still can't quite believe it, really, 63%? I was sure 50% was the max I could possibly ever do.

Biggest budget killer: Way too many birthdays and celebrations this month, gifts and going out to eat to celebrate those birthdays.

This Saturday was the 100th birthday party for one of the nicest women I know:)
All her kids from NY and Florida were there and grandma simply glowed with happiness. The free food and drinks at one of the finest Italian restaurants in town was the icing on the cake. Sometimes family rocks!

Overall:
Even with the poor stock market results, minor car problems and all those birthdays, we stayed on target with our savings and investments, but put a little ding in our "entertainment fund". We leave a few hundred extra in the checking for surprises and budget killers, but all in all it was still a good month.

Action: Managed to cut the phone bill by $20 a month and realized that just by transferring $600 from one account to another I will earn an extra 6 bucks a month - well, there are three months left in this year, so $18 more dollars for my savings account. YAY - easy - free money.

Bonus: Cash rewards $214.75 - added to my savings. That also motivated me to check on a rewards card from my credit union, because I never see anything from them. Weird. They said they send the bonus rewards money automatically to your saving account once a year in November. Well, I just checked NOV 2014 and I don't see it on my statement. Added to my list of things to do for tomorrow.

Worked up new goals and projections for next year - oh the possibilities:) and tweaked the budget a bit for the remainder of the year.

@allie vaulter - wow, nice boost to the budget, you guys were rocking it this month!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: TheBuddha on September 28, 2015, 05:39:13 PM
Savetember changed into spendtember :( Im sorry :(

+1

+2

I had to replace my internet because Clear is going out of business, so I bought a wifi device from https://yourkarma.com/ which is kinda expensive.

I also walked into a casino...
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 28, 2015, 07:30:55 PM
....
Biggest success my savings rate went up a bit and better yet, I came up with a revised budget that will increase the SR from 51% to 63%.
That is actually so far beyond my expectations that I still can't quite believe it, really, 63%? I was sure 50% was the max I could possibly ever do.
...

Yes! Yes! Yes!
This is the key...frugal, badass living. You have an off month, some birthdays, whatever. It dings you a little, but it it's just a station stop - not a derailment. You are still on the high speed rail to FIRE!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Nancy on September 30, 2015, 11:32:50 AM
Savetember was a success! I saved 83% of my take home pay (up from 71%). My goal was to reduce my food and misc. spending, and I accomplished both. I reduced my food budget by 46.8% by eating a lot of what we had in the house, eating from my garden, and giving myself a strict dining out budget. I didn't spend any money outside of food and bills, so no miscellaneous spending. I conquered my stocking up food habit, and I "made do, and did without" when things were used up or broken (I'm looking at you taped up sunglasses). This was a good exercise for me. I don't expect to continue at this saving level, but it's nice to know I can do it. I did enjoy buying the extra Vanguard shares with the savings.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on September 30, 2015, 02:11:48 PM
Savetember was a success! I saved 83% of my take home pay (up from 71%)....

Nancy, you are one helluva badass! And I hear you about resisting the "stock up" impulse. We've been getting used to that and it's not at all the disaster it "feels" like when you do it. You just have to be realistic about how long you can go before absolutely needing something....
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Tigerpine on September 30, 2015, 06:32:04 PM
Savetember was a success! I saved 83% of my take home pay (up from 71%).
Wow.  Simply amazing.  I'm speechless!  Good job!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Susan on October 01, 2015, 03:34:16 AM
Savings rate of 45% this month, and only spend about 100 on extras like gifts and social happenings. Most of it was gifts, as we attended a wedding this month. Im happy with the result!
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Rural on October 01, 2015, 04:34:48 PM
Savetember  came out okay after all; MRI is tomorrow morning, so it falls in October. :-)


I don't yet know our savings rate, but we will be close to 50% despite this being the first month of only half the income. It'll change over the months - that's not factoring in tuition payments since we didn't pay any this month - but we are already set up to save 43% of gross in pretax accounts, so anything else is gravy. We made some gravy this month.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: choppingwood on October 04, 2015, 09:39:05 AM
More than Planned:
Computer: $99.93  New adapter, print cartridges, scan and clean-up of viruses
Pets: 129.00 Bought extra large bag of kitty litter (3 mo supply) and some supplies for re-house training a senior dog. Includes regular spending for food for 2 cats and 1 dog
Entertainment: $109.94  Concert ticket, Itunes and Netflix
Food: 142.47 Includes some stocking up of meat, and peanut butter, but too much overall. Food prices seemed high -- US$ is affecting prices, I think. I also made too many small trips to grocery store that added up. I`d like to spend $125.00
Alcohol: $145.00  Would like to get this to $100.

As Planned or Better
Clothes: $213.00 First clothes purchased since March. Year to Date: $299.50 Just need winter boots for the rest of the year.
Restaurants: $13.83
Utilities, Insurance, Line of credit and mortgage payment
Reduced taxes owing: $567.00
Hired for small part-time job: Will add $200 a month to income
Renewed library card, so that I can get my book club books through them: Saves $200 per year. Books can be renewed online, so less likely to have late charges.

Had a frustrating month, waiting to hear from people, no computer for 2.5 weeks, slower than expected bank transfer. However, went to the small local library to use the internet when I didn`t have the computer, and got hired there as a casual, so that turned out OK.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Seppia on October 04, 2015, 09:49:04 AM
September was the second best month of the year so far for me, with 76% SR.
Managed to stay in budget on every category, except the "misc": I was hit with a $190 fine for a red light while biking.
By a hidden police car.
In one of the very few areas of NYC where there's ZERO traffic (battery park city, for those who know).
Seriously NYC cops, got nothing better to do?
I didn't argue obviously because I have a green card application pending and cannot afford any stupid mistake.
Title: Re: Savetember
Post by: Faraday on October 05, 2015, 03:30:48 PM
forummm has started a "Stocktober" thread. Come on over, the water's fine:

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/throw-down-the-gauntlet/stocktober/