Update: January 2013 Budget & Goals

January 31, 2013

January 2013 Actual Budget

Can you believe we’re already at the end of the very first month of the new year? Guess that means it’s time to see how my first budget and set of monthly goals went. As always, let’s talk money first!

I started 2013 with $6,500 of debt. This month, I paid off $850 and am now in the $5,000’s! As for my budget, I put 27% of my spending towards debt, 33% into savings, and the leftover 40% went towards my daily living expenses. I went over in some areas but, all in all, I’m pretty happy with how January’s final budget looks.

As for my goals, even though I feel good about it all, I want to take some time this weekend to make sure I’m on track with my annual goals. I dreamt up some pretty big dreams for this year, and I know I’m actively working towards making a few of them happen, but I want to keep the others in the back of my mind too.

Goals for this month:

  • Attempt a No Spend January (Essentials only!) – Hmm… PASS/FAIL!? I did pretty good, minus buying myself one book and two gifts for other people.
  • Track my weekly spending – PASS! No problems here.
  • Workout 2x per week – FAIL! This is just not a priority for me, right now. I knew it, even before I made this goal…
  • Start a new freelance project – PASS! I started freelancing for LearnVest this month. My first post gave me an opportunity to interview a few other personal finance bloggers and I got to send out an invoice for it. How fun is that?
  • Read 2 books – PASS! This month, I read 3 books: Blogging to Drive Business, She Takes on the World, and Bossypants. I also started reading Blog Inc. and Drinking: A Love Story.

How did your month finish up?

  • Deena Dollars January 31, 2013 at 8:34 am

    I don’t think you should put additional savings/RRSP as over budget! You should put that $*#& in GOLD for GOLD STAR!

    Great job, can’t wait to see how next month pans out for you! :)

    • Cait January 31, 2013 at 9:36 am

      Haha, you’re right. I should’ve coloured it yellow (for gold). ;)

  • Andrew Buhler January 31, 2013 at 11:30 am

    I did all right, I blew my fuel budget and averaged filling up every 5.6 days. I also got higher then normal natural gas, and water bills this month.

    • Cait January 31, 2013 at 10:29 pm

      Why the higher than normal bills, Andrew? Is that seasonal?

  • From Shopping to Saving January 31, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    You did awesome this month!!! 4/5 is great :) I still can’t believe it’s the end of January already…and then Feb is going to FLY by. SO SCARY!

    • Cait January 31, 2013 at 10:29 pm

      Thanks, hun! And yes, short months always do. PS, I miss you! Hope school isn’t kicking your butt.

  • Joanna @ Our Freaking Budget January 31, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    In answer to your first question, NO, I cannot believe it’s already the end of January! What in the world??? And well done on your budget! It’s totally worth tracking all those expenses when you get to see what you accomplished at the end of the month!

    • Cait January 31, 2013 at 10:30 pm

      I couldn’t agree more, Joanna! Onto February…

  • A January 31, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Good work C! We stuck to our plan to save J’s income entirely. It got sort of hairy at the end here but we made it. I think we went $3 over budget :]

    February is going to be even tougher. I think we can do it! The plan is to do nothing this weekend so that should help with keeping our spending on track. It’s so easy to go over the entertainment category, and now that we have individual spending categories I can finally start buying clothes, which adds up way too quickly. So I have to keep the closest eye on both of those line items.

    • Cait January 31, 2013 at 10:31 pm

      Way to go, you two! I’m not doing anything this weekend either. You know what that means? Emailing with you! xo

  • Canadianbudgetbinder January 31, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    I’d be proud too Cait, you did well this month considering you only went over in a couple areas. I need to get back to the library and read some more books. I haven’t read one in a few months. Keep up the great work! Mr.CBB

    • Cait January 31, 2013 at 10:31 pm

      What are you waiting for? Go, go go! :)

  • Catherine February 1, 2013 at 9:55 am

    I really need to learn to track things better… you’re rocking it! Good job for seeing the $5,000 mark! Debt freedom is SO close for you :)

    • Cait February 1, 2013 at 11:17 am

      Thanks, Catherine! It’s crazy to think I’ll be in the $4K’s this month…

  • Kathleen, Frugal Portland February 1, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    Rock it, Cait! You’re so close!

    • Cait February 1, 2013 at 9:03 pm

      I can almost taste it!