Update: August 2013 Budget & Goals

September 2, 2013

August 2013 Budget

I started this month off with no budget, which is really unusual for me… because I was moving, I knew money was going to fly in and out of my hands. But I tracked my spending daily and am really happy with how the month finished up.

First of all, 24% of my spending went into savings! I put $700 in my Emergency Fund, which is now going to sit at $2,000 for a few months, while I focus on a couple other savings goals for the rest of the year. I know $2,000 isn’t much – and it certainly doesn’t make me feel safe yet – but I am glad it’s there.

My move only cost me a total of $228.50, which was a welcome surprise – and most of that was the purchase of a new dresser, as I’ve gone without one for months. But my old landlord gave me all $500 of my security deposit back, which covered many of the other costs associated with the move.

The rest of the categories were fairly average, other than two: Restaurants and Gifts. One of my co-workers came to visit me for a week and, while we spent most of our time on my couches, I did make sure we went out for some good dinners. As for gifts, August is always full of birthdays (Dad, “niece”) and there was also a surprise engagement to celebrate.

Considering that I usually budget for $3,000 each month, I’d have to say I did pretty good without an actual budget in place! But I also worked hard on a new layout for my budgets going forward, and can’t wait for you to see what September looks like.

Goals for the month:

  • Put 10% of my income in my Emergency Fund – PASS! I actually put 24% of my income into it.
  • Put 10% of my income in my RRSPs – FAIL! See above.
  • Track my spending – PASS!
  • Post a completed budget at the end of the month – PASS!
  • Stop eating so much ice cream! – PASS! I still ate a decent amount of ice cream, but I also started eating a lot better (because exercising isn’t an option right now) and lost 5 lbs. Woo woo! #pfworkout

How did your month finish up?

Also, in case you missed it, my first post on Gail Vaz-Oxlade’s Other Voices blog went live yesterday! You can read it here and check back every Sunday for a new post.

  • Rob September 2, 2013 at 5:36 am

    Hey Cait, happy to see that your move went well (as well as your monthly expenses) and hope that you’re gradually getting up to speed health wise after that recent fender bender that you experienced. I checked out your latest entry over at Gail’s blog. Congratulations.

    As to my August expenditures, well I went well over board in my outdoor home improvement project expenses. But it was planned for and the $$$ in savings had been previously set aside to fully cover it. That said, all my other monthly expense categories were dead on or under budget so I’m satisfied with the results.

    • Cait September 2, 2013 at 8:20 am

      Thanks, Rob!

      And are you done the outdoor project yet!? Going to relax at all this fall?

      • Rob September 2, 2013 at 9:54 am

        Outdoor project-s – plural Cait! Originally I was planning to just re-level my patio but, like a loose thread in a sweater, one project led into another (which, in turn, led into another, etc. etc. etc.) – all at the “urgings” of others, I have to say! :-)

        Anyway, as previously reported, I’m about 90% completed, with one final “project” started – putting in an interlocking stone front walkway, parallel to my driveway, leading from the house to the city sidewalk.

        As to relaxing this fall? Probably not – indoor house painting season starts then! :-)
        And so it goes …

        • Cait September 2, 2013 at 12:22 pm

          Haha, it never ends when you own a home, I suppose.

  • Alicia @ Financial Diffraction September 2, 2013 at 10:34 am

    Awesome savings rate – I can’t imagine how much better that feels going to savings than debt-repayment! And even on a month that had a bit of upheaval due to a move.

    I do my month on the 15th, but I know it’s going to be a pretty ugly re-cap. Not really looking forward to it.

    • Cait September 2, 2013 at 12:21 pm

      Well, at least you’re tracking your spending! Good or bad, I think it’s better to finish a month and know exactly how much you’ve spent than avoid looking at the final numbers.

  • Eva @ Girl Counting Pennies September 2, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    Good job on doing so well without a proper budget in place, Cait! I’d love to be able to save more, but since I’m paying off debt I’m only saving a tiny bit. $700 per month is a great saving! :P

    • Cait September 2, 2013 at 12:21 pm

      Thanks, Eva! You had a great month too, with being able to book some travel and all. :)

  • kelly @stayingonbudget September 2, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    Way to go with your emergency fund! It sounds like you had a great month!

    • Cait September 2, 2013 at 5:59 pm

      Thanks, Kelly!

  • Girl Meets Debt September 2, 2013 at 3:56 pm

    Congrats on losing 5 lbs Cait! I’ve been trying to lose 5 lbs for the last 5 years lol. Although there’s a gym in my condo now so maybe I’ll be able to lose some weight faster :)

    • Cait September 2, 2013 at 6:01 pm

      Nice! I have a gym in my new building too!

  • Jordann @ My Alternate Life September 3, 2013 at 5:01 am

    $700 into your emergency fund is great! I think you did a pretty sweet job considering you didn’t have a budget.

    • Cait September 3, 2013 at 6:46 am

      Thanks, Jordann! Just wait until you see September’s budget :)

  • Josh @ CNAFinance.com September 3, 2013 at 9:10 am

    Congrats on hitting the mark on almost all of your goals. Wow, 24% of your income saved, that’s awesome! Keep up the good work!

    • Cait September 4, 2013 at 6:49 am

      Thanks, Josh.

  • moneystepper.com September 3, 2013 at 10:48 am

    4 out of 5 ain’t half bad!!

    24% of your income into savings is a truly incredible achievement given that you were $28k in debt 2 years ago. What a difference a blog and a great attitude makes!

    Well done Cait – a true inspiration to all those currently paying down debt.

    • Cait September 4, 2013 at 6:49 am

      Thank you for the kind words!