Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Where does it go?

One of the things that is emphasized in Chris Farrell’s Right on the Money! is the idea of knowing where your money is going and seeing if this matches what you’d actually like to be spending your money on. In other words, does where you put your money match your values?

To see if I’m on track here’s my Mint breakdown:
32% on Home
20% on Travel
10% on Shopping
8% on Healthcare (the vast majority of this is reimbursed by the hubby’s workplace)
7% on Savings and Investments
5% on Bills and Utilities
5% on Food and Dining
5% on Autos
less than 2% on everything else

While I look at these numbers every month, there is something about having these numbers in percentages that makes it apparent that we’re fairly on track with our spending, but still have room to improve.

Home- We’re living in a great apartment in a great downtown location. It’s the time in our lives when we can do this (don’t have kids, don’t need a lawn). I feel fine about spending this amount on our home.

Travel- We’re both very close to our families, and it is unacceptable to not see them often. We would be very sad people if we didn’t spend the money to spend time with our families and friends. We also make sure to have some vacation time for just us on some of these types of trips.

Shopping- Of course this could be lower. About half of this category was spent on clothing that was wedding related- so this is a category that will go down in our future spending. Almost the rest was spent at Target getting all the things you need from big box stores.

Savings and Investments- I wish this were bigger. Now that we won’t have the wedding expenses, I’m intending to put the difference into savings. Also, once I get a job this will get bigger!

Bills, Food, and Autos- All things you have to spend money on, and are unlikely areas to cut back on without making large lifestyle changes.

How does your values and your spending line up?

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