Tuesday, May 6, 2014

$24K Savings Challenge.....April Update

Every year I keep a close eye on our monthly expenses and our monthly income.
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 pots....life insurance, health insurance premiums, long term care insurance premiums, investments and retirement savings.  It's automatic so we are never tempted to NOT put it into savings.

Once the automatic savings amounts, plus taxes and medical/dental/vision premiums 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, annual etc.) and our variable bills(like food, eating out, clothing  etc.)  Anything left over once our monthly expenses are paid, I put aside into a Savings Challenge. 

For 2014 I am continuing my Yearly Savings Challenge.  I am raising the Goal amount slightly to $24,000 this year, $4K more than my goal for last year.

On to the April report.....

I have posted my April End of Month $24K $AVING$ 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 $2,000.

I have to report that we finished up April with a smaller than needed amount.
The extra amount we ended the month of April with?.......$1,313.40.

We had $1224.68 left over from our income after our monthly expenses were deducted.
Other monies received in April totaled $88.72.  This included interest made on accounts and a per diem from Hub's work.

This brought us to our gain of $1313.40.
Since we have no debt anymore, this goes into savings.

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

*  The electric bill went down $62 from March's bill.


*  We owed state taxes this year and paid them in April.
*  The c/c bill was $182 more than March's bill.
*  The water bill went up $2.
*  $770 MORE in cash withdrawals than in March.  A lot of this was for vacation spending.
*  We have a $76 Vet bill for the dog.
*  We had Prom related expenses of $200.
*  The food bill went up $125.94 from March's food spending.
The Food Budget costs for March are in another post, which is located HERE.

The 2014 GRAND TOTAL.....
With 4 months accounted for, our Savings Grand Total for 2014 is $6,070.60
$1,929.40 short at this point of the $8,000.00 I should have put aside after 4 months.
I've fallen approx. $700 further behind with April's total compared to March's total.
Looking ahead for May......

*  I will continue to do this Savings Challenge and report in each month on how it is going.

*  The expenses from our road trip to Louisiana we put on the credit card will be paid off in May, which will raise our spending this month.

*  May is a 3rd paycheck month, so this pay will go toward paying off the trip expenses from April and I am hoping it covers it ALL.  This will go a long way to get us to our savings goal of $2K for May.

*  The electric bill should continue to go down as the weather warms and we turn off the heat in May.

*  There are no trips or events planned for May, so no expected extra spending....unless I break down and buy some furniture.

*  I am going to try to reign in the food budget for May and keep it at or below $300.
So how was your April financially?
Did you spend less than the income you had in March?
Did you stay within your budget or not?
Did you pay off any debts or put extra toward your mortgage principle or into savings in an emergency fund or a retirement account?

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. Well, April was tax month. So, a big fat no on spending less than we earned. All the gory details here! http://thehawaiiplan.blogspot.com/2014/05/april-financial-summary-where-did-all.html :-)

  2. I noticed that it's getting harder and harder for us to stay within our grocery budget (and gas, of that matter). The prices go up overnight! I went to the store on yesterday, and milk was 40c more than last week. It's crazy!

  3. I wish I could get my partner to do this!

  4. We had so many little repair bills, 87.00 garage door, 37.00 furnace, 196.00 bath tub. Then small medical bills, 15.15 and 45.40. but these extras add up.Groceries are going through the roof

  5. April wasn't too bad. I had to buy a new laptop but I was going to anyways in June. My tax refund, also received in April, covered that cost in full, thankfully. I try to live on one paycheque per month and put the other into savings. That way when I retire I'll already be used to living on one paycheque a month, which is good as my pension is deposited once a month. I like your number of $24,000 - a nice round monthly figure of $2,000 - I like round numbers :)

  6. Ouch, such a tiny good list, such an extensive bad one! Though come on, the water bill portion wasnt really that bad! Haha. Woot on 3 check month! That should've been a good!

    I spent too much in April. I've been in movement too much, which hurts my gas and food budgets. Didnt pay anything significant (besides a 4k down payment on the car, ahem), but everything else went according to some imaginary plan!

  7. Wow! I'm impressed yet again... I wish we could stash some away in savings!

  8. I don't want to talk about it. Arms crossed.
    It is getting a wee bit out of control here. I'm out of my comfort zone.
    Winning the lotto is an option, right?


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