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Tuesday, October 2, 2007

October Budget and decreasing my monthly expenses

After I came to the realization that my monthly bills took up 89.5% of my income, I went on a mission to lower my expenses anyway I could. Of course a big chunk of that is made up of my debt which I am currently working on. Unless I win the lottery, that will be a long and steady road. Until then I am trying to find other ways to decrease my monthly expenses.

I am proud to say that in 3 days I was able to knock $80 off my monthly expenses. Here is how:

  • $10 on Vonage : I called Vonage and asked for the current promotion that offered the same plan I had but for $10 less.

  • $20 on cell phone: Lowered my plan from $59.99 to $39.99.

  • $50 on cable : Canceled my cable. All my fav shows are shown on my local channels (free) and also online (also free).
Not bad huh?? All other categories are pretty much untouchable excluding debt. I mean I can say that I will work on using less electricity and water but who we kidding?! Dimples has enough ish to be frugal with. Water to wash my behind and power to light up my home ain't gonna be included.

With that said, here is my October budget:

As I said before, I am putting a hold on the E-fund now that I have reached my initial goal. $3K if a pretty good safety net to back me up during the next year as I snowball my credit card debt. Once that gets eliminated, I will pick the emergency fund game up again and go after my next goal of $10K. This way I can apply more towards my debt. All other categories are based off last month's actuals.

Hopefully I can bring in some extra income. Cash Duck is due to come back mid-October. And I am working on some other promising avenues to extra moola. I'll give you guys the 411 on that tomorrow.

I am sleepy now.



Sistah Ant said...

Lookin' good! One suggestion - you could save $18 a month if you got rid of your house phone. Unless your internet comes through your phone line, you probably don't need it.

When I pared my expenses down, I got rid of cable, internet (I use wi-fi), and the house phone. I moved to a smaller place, I shopped around for lower car insurance, and now I'm getting a roommate. Every little bit has helped- you're on the right track!

Chitown said...

The budget looks Good.

I am going to look into Vonage. I currently pay $60-65 per month for phone service which I barely use. My co-worker swears by it.

Good job on setting up the emergency fund!

SavingDiva said...

Great job cutting down expenses! I had to try to cut back my budget this month too...however, I did pick up an extra expense...internet! I couldn't handle being without internet any more. However, I still don't have cable...

Brian Jefferies said...

It looks like you have done a terrific job at decreasing your expenses.


Single Ma said...

Good job reducing your expenses. What is miscellaneous for?

You have two lines for credit cards. Mabye I missed something but what's the difference cuz I know you have more than $370 in CC debt? LOL

Just an observation...

Your budget looks good but it's a lil tight. Where do you allow for small things in life? A trip to the ice cream shop? A movie? Hair/nails?

You should acknowledge those things up front so you won't feel like a failure at the end of the month. If they don't happen, cool. But no matter how good your intentions, you are human and those 'niceties' will come up.

If that's the $50 misc. category, you've allotted yourself only $12.50/week outside of going to work and paying bills? You should allow yourself a little more to keep the momentum going. If your budget is too restrictive (like mine was), sooner or later, you will want to quit.

Also, do you budget in advance for Christmas expenses?

Anonymous said...

Have you replaced your incandescent light bulbs with CFL bulbs? Do you turn off lights when you leave a room? Do you have your instant-on, energy-eating appliances on power strips that you can shut off with one click? Saves money and good for the environment too.