Thursday, September 6, 2012

$20K Savings Challenge....AUGUST Update

Ok, here is my AUGUST Savings Challenge Update post for 2012.
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 "unconscious" spending.

Just to update, My Savings Goal for the Year in 2012 is $20,000.  It's well below what I've saved in previous years I know.  But we also have a goal of paying for 4 home improvement projects at Chez Sluggy this year.  We plan on cash-flowing these projects with the additional money we save and/or our income tax refund.
Our background info--We are a family of 5(kids are 21-16)with one living away from home.  We have 2 dogs. We own 4 cars at present and live in/own free & clear a 4 bedroom house in a small town.

On to the August report.....

I have posted my AUGUST End of Month $20K $AVING$ 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 $1,666.67.

I have to report that we finished up August in the black!
The extra cash amount we ended the month of August with?.......$756.06.
So much for making our targeted amount this month. 8-(

We had $753.77 left over from our income after our monthly expenses were deducted.
Add in $2.29 in interest income(Are you serious?  Really!) and  you get a total of $756.06.

The usual along with 1 large irregular bill which was expected and planned for.
As for the expenses this August......

* The water bill decreased by $30+.
* The electric bill decreased by $21+.
* The credit card bill decreased by $702.
* The cash withdrawals went down $1170.....even with that they were high!


*  Semi-Annual Car Insurance was due at a cost of $1590.11.
*  Lots of little medical co-pays and prescription co-pays that added up to real money!
*  Lots of cash withdrawals(always a bad thing cuz Hubs doesn't track where this money goes). the cash taken was LESS than last month but it was still waaaay too much money so it goes under Bad
*  Extra gas expenditures due to cross state pick-ups from camp.
*  Marching Band is back, which means $20 here, $30 there on a consistent basis. Also going hand in hand is....
*  Private music lessons cranking up again for #2 Son.  $120 a month.

The Food Budget costs for AUGUST are in another post, which is located HERE.

With 8 month behind us, our Savings Grand Total for 2012 is at  $16,369.29.
We missed our monthly goal in August by $910.61.
Luckily due to having a few months where we saved more than the average, this month, where we didn't even save HALF of what we need to this month,  won't put us behind.
With 8 months done, we should be at $13,333.36  saved for the year, so we are $3K+ a little bit ahead for the year as of now!

In the next month we have another large irregular expense coming due.
September is school taxes at a yearly outlay of  $1950.

They are irregular because they don't come every the water or electric bill.

But we know they are out there....lurking and ready to topple your budget.  So we calculate what 1/12th is for that bill and then every month set that amount aside and "hide it from the budget".  When the bill comes due in a year, the money is there to pay it.  It wasn't left in the general money fund(checking account)to mingle with the dollars that aren't earmarked for a specific purpose. 
Bill money has a funny way of doing that.......pretending it's really Not-Bill money or even Fun money and hiding in plain sight with the non-committed dollars in your account.

If you don't separate that irregular bill money, it's sooo easy to spend it on something else, possibly a non-necessity like eating out or a fancy coffee drink or going bowling on the weekend because you "deserve" some fun, or another shirt your kid really doesn't need because they have 38 more in their closet.
Even if you have to put that irregular bill money as a wad of singles into a coffee can and hide it in your shed or put it into a Tupperware into your deep freezer to keep from spending it on crap, DO IT!  You'll be glad you did when that irregular bill payment rolls around again....
At this point, I need to come up with $3,630.71 for the rest of the year to make my $20K goal.  This breaks down to $907.68  per month for the next 4 months.  Unless something untoward happens we should be able to meet this goal.

As for a look ahead at SEPTEMBER.......

*  There is that School Taxes Bill. (Another irregular bill I've been saving every month for.) 

So how was your August financially?
Did you spend less than you made?
Did you stay within your budget or not?
How much did you save in August?  Did you use it to pay down debt or build your Emergency Fund?

Even if what you are able to save each month doesn't look like a lot of money, figure out what percentage of your income you saved.  You might feel that it's a more substantial amount in those terms!
We saved 12.71% of our take home income in August.  My goal is to shoot for 50% each month.
Our heavy expenses in August had us fall short of my goal.

Leave a comment and share with us what you did with your money, both the good and not-so good.
Did you have debt you were able to pay on?
Did you pay off a car, a house or a credit card?
Did something financial blow up on you last month?
What are you doing financially to change your life?

If you posted your financial progress on your own blog, leave a link in the comments so we can go check you out too!


1 comment:

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