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Budget Time!

January 7th, 2007 at 12:20 pm

After all those years of being satisfied that I'm able to tie up loose ends and pay off monthly credit card statements, rent and utilities, I finally sat down with my Quicken software and designed a budget. Hey, might as well take advantage of Quicken. I don't even have the current fancy schmancy version, but boy, was my 2004 version good enough for me. I am a visual person, so the ability to graph my monthly expenditures was well worth it. By further breaking things down by category, I finally got a grasp on where I've been spending all my hard-earned money.

Well, no big surprise, Rent has been the big money-sucking monster, accounting for 50% of all expenses. Close behind that was auto, which included fuel, insurance, and repairs. But one big eye opener was how much I've spent on groceries. Last year, I spent $1900 on groceries! Now for the first half of last year I was living with my at the time boyfriend, which would explain the ~$150/month for groceries, but sadly, in the past few months where I am living single (Sept-Dec) I have still been spending more or less $150/month. Part of it was due to the restocking of pantry supplies, but to be honest, my grocery bills have been going up because I've been buying more prepared foods, out of convenience. Ai ya!! *slap on the wrist*. But something I can work on.

Another unexpeted budget buster has been clothing. I spent $100/month on clothing, accessories and cosmetics last year alone, and let's remember, I was in grad school, not exactly the most glamorous of positions, for half that year. So now that I'm working in the corporate world, where appearances matter, I am worried that expense may start to creep up.

But with the power of Quicken I was able to keep track of my savings. Even more encouraging was to see the rising trendline of my net worth over the years. I was impressed to notice it has more or less increased by $10,000 with each year, even throughout grad school, when I was living off the modest student stipend. Hopefully I can continue that upward trend!

Budgeting isn't always fun, but I'm glad I went through with it. As silly as it sounds, it really feels like a rite of passage of sorts....my journey into adulthood, ha ha.

1 Responses to “Budget Time!”

  1. boomeyers Says:

    Don't forget to head for the thrift store when you shop for your corporate wardrobe! It could end up saving you lots! :-)

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