Budget makeover : 2011 vs 2014

This week I found an old notebook with some previous budgeting records. I have always tracked my money on the fixed expense side of things, and it was quite interesting to see this old record from August 2011:

Circumstances in 2011 – I was single and living alone in an apartment I absolutely loved, right on the beach – the cost of rent not allowing me to save a lot. I am big on fitness and health and I recall at this time in my life I was doing several paid classes (not included in a gym membership) of boxing per week plus personal training. I was also trying to save for my South American backpacking adventure. My phone, laptop and whitegoods were all on rental contracts – which, in my mind, are debt.

Fortnightly budget 2011

My wage was $1677.00 per fortnight (actually $50 more per fortnight than I earn now)

  • $44.00 laptop rental ($84 per month)
  • $185.00 payment to credit cards
  • $600.00 rental payment ($1200 per month)
  • $50.00 phone (I was on a contract that went came to between $90 – $100 per month)
  • $12.50 internet (pre paid, $25.00 per month)
  • $75.00 personal loan – I was only making minimum repayments ($130.00 per month, at that stage my loan was smaller)
  • $32.00 boxing classes ($64.00 per month)
  • $40.00 personal training ($80.00 per month)
  • $25.00 whitegood rental ($50.00 per month)
  • $100.00 travel ($200.00 per month)

So that left me with $513.50 which is $256.7 per week for groceries, spending money and savings. I know I spent around $100 – $120 on groceries per week when I lived alone. So that would be about 136.00 for savings and spending. No wonder I found it difficult to save money during this time, although I constantly did feel like I was saving, but not large amounts.

I didn’t include electricity, or any buffer.

Circumstances for 2014

I live with my boyfriend, closer to my workplace (less travel) and split costs of rent, groceries and electricity. We have a small older apartment, which has been very very hot during the summer (no aircon) but I can see already from the summary below that our decision to rent a modest place has really impacted savings.

Fortnightly budget 2014

My wage is $1620.00 per fortnight

  • Rent: $295.00 ($590.00 per month – $610.00 less than 2011)
  • Travel: $45.00 ($90 per month – $110.00 less than 2011)
  • Phone: $15.00 prepaid  ($30 per month – $60.00 less than 2011 and no contract)
  • Internet: $15.00 – On an internet plan for $30.00 per month – $5.00 more than 2011)
  • Electricity: $20.00 – I had no inclusion of electricity in 2011 budget.
  • Gym: $47.80 ($96.20 less than fitness costs 2011)
  • Groceries: $250.00 ($5.00 more than 2011 per week – however, I’ve actually got this as an allowance in my budget now)
  • Tithe / donation: $20.00 (didn’t have giving allocation in 2011 budget)
  • Loan repayment: $160.00 – ($190.00 more than 2011. My minimum is higher at $173.00 but I am making addition payment of $73.50 per fortnight towards the loan)
  • Buffer: $50.00 (didn’t have a buffer allocation in 2011 budget)
  • Spending: $230.00 – Most weeks will leave me with $115.00 as spending / entertainment money.
  • Savings: $490.00 from March 2014 – my 2011 savings were variable based on what I had left over, however I have built the amount of $490.00 into my budget for 2014. The start of this year has been variable due to NZ trip and 2 interstate trips.

So 2 main things have changed.

I have rid myself of most contracts and 2 credit cards and I include everything in my budget now, rather than just seeing what I have left to pay the variable amounts (spending, savings and groceries)

So it was interesting – and encouraging – to come across an old budget and see I have made progress. Slow progress, but I’ll take it as a win!

 

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5 thoughts on “Budget makeover : 2011 vs 2014

  1. You seem to be into fitness quite a bit 🙂 Stay healthy and happy ! also I wish I could do these comparisons but I can’t. I know in 2011 I was working full time and had 3k saved.

    • fitness and health are huge priorities in my life. But things like personal training etc can be costly! Now I’m happy with my cheapy gym membership ($12.00 per week) and they started including classes in this price, which is excellent value here! I also have some equipment – weights and stuff I can use at home. And of course running is free!

      • Me too im a fitness nut as i write im doing my bike workout. I bought my own small treadmill for 80$ and have a bunch of free weiggts and a bench. I also have free access to a small gym because i volunteer with them. But i dont get any classes which sucks because i loveeee zumba and yoga. Unfortunatly in my rural area there are bareky no classes and when there is i am working :/ buut yea so i just do my own streatching and yoga at home.

  2. morgaine80 says:

    Its amazing to look back and see at the progress you’ve made. I used to do the same thing, wait until next payday and see if I had any money left to save, of course, there was never any. Pay yourself first is probably the best money lesson you can follow. Keep up the good work! 🙂

    • I totally agree about paying yourself first! It was nice to review and see that I have made progress….sometimes change happens so slowly that it feels like you will never get there! This debt smashing mission has taught me patience!I’ve ‘settled’ more into my routine now and seeing the numbers slowly tick down…slowly being the key word ha. And Im ok with that! Thanks for your comment 🙂

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