Monday, January 2, 2012

$32K Savings Challenge.....DECEMBER & 2011 Grand Total RESULTS


Ok, here is my last Savings Challenge Update post for 2011.
This post is NOT about bragging or showing off.  It's just what we are able to save given our income and being able to hang tough against so much spending.

On to the December report.....

I have posted my DECEMBER End of Month $32K $AVING$ CHALLENGE Totals.
Check out the side bar to your right for the specific numbers.

I have 2 goals each month.....
The 1st is to actually finish each month in the black and not the red.
The 2nd is to hit the targeted savings amount of $2,666.67.

I have to report that we finished up December in the black!
The extra cash amount we ended the month of December with?.......$4,355.36!

Income
We had $4186.70 left over from our income after our monthly expenses were deducted.
Add in $6.00 in Rebates applied against the food expenses, $.84 in Interest on the Checking Account, $141.82 in dividends, and a refund of $20 on our car insurance rate toward the Savings Challenge & you get a total of $4355.36.

Our monthly target is an average of $2,666.67 to reach our Year End Goal.
This month we blew that goal out of the water, thanks to an extra paycheck.  8-)

Outgo
As for the expenses in December......

HERE are the GOOD THINGS

* The electric bill went up only $71.....that's good seeing as the heat was on!
* The food spending was almost on budget at $307.74
* The water bill was $50.50.  This is low when all the kids are home(extra showers and laundry).
* There were no taxes due this month...yay!!
* I continued to consistently sell in my eBay store in December.


HERE are the BAD THINGS

* The credit card bill was $1750+.  Even though $350 of that was fees paid to eBay on sales there we were still over our usual $1000 average on the credit card bill.  No matter the amount of the bill, it is paid off in full each month, ALWAYS.
* $1180 in car maintenance/repair bills.  Seems every time we take a car in for oil change or regular maintenance they find something else. ugh.
* Had $85 in unexpected medical associated bills to pay. (Need I mention #2 son lost his retainer AGAIN after getting the 1st replacement 2 weeks before hand, so we had to pay for ANOTHER replacement. He's repaying us for it with his allowance.)
*  Still a LARGE amount of cash withdrawals by Hubs. I'm not complaining this month because some of it was him buying me Christmas presents. ;-)


The Food Budget costs for December are in another post, which is located HERE.  We kept almost to the food budget amount again in December so I am calling it all good.

YEAR-TO-DATE GRAND TOTAL.....
With 12 months behind us, our Savings Grand Total for 2011 is $34,461.31.
YES!
We blew our $32K Goal out of the water!!!

The extra paycheck in December gave us a hefty amount to tuck away after all the bills were paid AND left lots of room for Christmas indulgence!

So how did your savings go for the year?
Do you have an emergency fund of 6-8 months worth of expenses?
Do you have debt?
If you don't have the former, start living below your means NOW and put some money away for emergencies.
If you have the latter, start living below your means NOW and put a smaller amount away for emergencies and use the rest of your leftover cash each month to pay down your debt.
And once you get debt-free, continue to throw that debt repayment money into savings.
It is NEVER too early or too late to SAVE SOMETHING.
And the amount you save is NEVER too small!
Anything you can spare will go a long way to make you more financially secure in this crazy unstable world we live in.

So come along and Challenge Yourself to Save Money each Month Toward a Realistic for YOU Savings Goal or Debt Goal!
Not everyone can shoot for $32K, I fully get that!
But everyone can shoot for some number, right!?

Find a money goal that works for you and put that number out there for everyone to see.  Put it into paying down your debt, put it into savings, invest it or put it toward the principle in your home mortgage....just get busy and do this!

It will help keep you accountable to your goal if other eyes are on you.
Put it out there online and let us all stalk your money too. ;-)

So how was your Deember financially?
Did you spend less than you made?
Did you stay within your budget or not?

Leave a comment and share with us what you did with your money, both the good and not-so good.   Do you have any tricks or tips that help you to end your month before the money runs out?    Let us know!
If you posted your financial progress on your own blog, leave a link in the comments so we can go check you out too!

Sluggy

3 comments:

  1. You did great! Good Job. I ended the year with $5600 in savings. Not too shabby because I did that in 3 months. I'm not going to tell you how December was because I had to return some gifts and my receipts got all mixed up and some got lost. Lets just say my kids had a good Christmas and each got 1 expensive gift. There were not many gifts under the tree from me so I didn't go all out crazy. My major purchases were a PSP, a digital camera,pair of hiking boots for The Boyfriend, and a bottom of the line electric razor ( those puppies are expensive!). I didn't really set a budget but I still saved my normal amount and the spending came from my general checking account.

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  2. Good for you, Sluggy! You did fantastic!

    We never spend more than we bring in, which is a good thing. LOL! We spent more in December than usual due to Christmas. I kept a pretty tight reign on my spending, but Hubby went crazy. As in your case, I won't complain, becaus it was all gifts for ME. My favorite.

    We are very fortunate that the only debt we have is a car loan with very low interest rate, which will be paid off sometime this year, I think. I have a very good amount in my retirement fund which, though it has its ups and downs, is growing well, since I have it invested very agressively.

    And we have an emergency fund that makes me very happy.

    I don't plan a monthly savings amount, as I just put my annual bonus, received in March, into our savings account. And tax refund goes in to. We never make plans to spend that money.

    We are in a good place for us.

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  3. You are so amazing! I've never known anyone that has done what you have done.
    I can't wait to see what you do this year.

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