Friday, October 4, 2013

September $20K Savings Challenge Update

In our family we save money. It is important to us to put money aside for "rainy days".  You know.....those unexpected days when things happen in your life that you can't plan on, but that DO happen and they cost you money you didn't know you'd need to pay out.

Our income is mainly the salary my Hubs draws from his job.  We have money taken off each paycheck from the top to put into savings, before we even get our hands on it.  This money that's taken goes into various insurance, investments and retirement savings.  It's automatic so we are never tempted to NOT put it into savings.
Once the automatic savings, plus taxes and medical/dental/vision payments are taken out, it leaves what we get to "live on".  From this amount we budget for bills, both monthly and irregular bills(semi-annual, etc.) and our variable bills(like food, eating out, etc.)  Anything left over once our monthly expenses are paid, I put aside into a Savings Challenge. 

For 2013 I am continuing my Yearly Savings Challenge.  I am going to keep the Goal amount at $20,000 again this year.
On to the September report.....

I have posted my September End of Month $20K $AVING$ CHALLENGE Totals.
Check out the Savings Challenge page tab at the top of the blog 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 September in the black but just barely!
The extra cash amount we ended the month of September with?.......$40.12

We had -9.51 left over from our income after our monthly expenses were deducted.
Yeah, not such a great month here.
Other monies received in September totaled $49.63.  This brought us back into the black and our gain to $40.12 for September.

As for the expenses this September, here are the good and the bad side of things....

*  Evidently I over paid the long distance phone last month so our bill was only .60¢ in Sept.
*  The food/toiletries bill was about $84 less than my $400 budgeted amount.
* Cash withdrawals were $70 less than in August.

*  The annual school taxes were due which ate up almost an entire paycheck.
*  The electric bill started going up, this month by only $7 but the trend will continue as the weather gets cooler.
*  Credit card bill was $700 higher than last month's bill which included the payment for the dog's surgery and a $600 car repair.

The Food Budget costs for September are in another post, which is located HERE.
We came in under budget by about $84 last month but with the taxes due that wasn't enough to give us more than $40 leftover at the end of the month.

The 2013 TOTAL so far.....
With 9 months behind us, our Savings Grand Total for 2013 stands at $16,302.96.  Only $3,697.04 left to save and 3 months left to accomplish this.
That comes out to $1232.35 per month for the next 3 months to reach the goal.  It is going to be tight to get us to that goal but it's doable.  Especially since we still have a 3rd paycheck month left this year.  8-))
Looking ahead for October......
*  The heat will get turned on sometime in October so electric usage will increase.

*  No big annual or semi-annual bills come due in October(the next one is in February)so we can save a bit of money this month.
*  We have another short getaway trip this month, so those costs will come out of October's pay.  I usually take trip costs out of the last year's savings challenge pot, but with all the remodeling/heating and a/c costs and summer road trip costs so far in 2013, the 2012 savings have been depleted.  So all Oct. trip costs will be paid for out of this October's pay.

So how was your September financially?  It wasn't a great month for us.  If not for the dividend checks with received from some investments, we would have had to dip into our savings to cover our expenses in September.
Did you put ordinary living expenses on a credit card last month and not pay it off in full when due?
Did you spend less than the income you had in September?
Did you received any "extra" or unexpected money in September, a dividend or bonus at work, and what did you do with those funds?
Did you stay within your budget or not?
Did you pay off any debts or put extra toward your mortgage principle?

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



  1. September ended up better than usual but not until I did some yelling and accusing. When I made a payment in August on the telephone bill, I was told I "only" owed a small amount. Reluctantly, I paid that amount after a chirpy agent who just did not know what she was doing promised me my telephone would not get cut off. Well, it did and so did another service--to the tune of $70+ in late fees. THEN, in September I was threatened with losing my number. I did not even know it was off!

    After several more calls and agents who transferred me to the wrong person or swore they could not find my bill or see anything cut off, I finally got one person who took care of it all. However, in the preceding days, several persons gave me credits, refunded part of bill, all to the tune of over $150 because of totally untrue information relayed to me by ATT agents. The refund and credits are the only good things that happened financially in September. It helped pay the bills but did nothing for my state of mind during the last two weeks.

    I expect ATT to implode one day.

    LOL...I am making no financial progress. This month I am tracking food spending.

  2. In the black is in the black - well done!


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