Some time mid January, following a session of binge reading Refinery29’s Money Diaries series, I decided to track and share my own spending. Having completed one whole calendar month of this, I’m kind of surprised by how unsurprising the results are. I thought it would be easier to make sense of this and budget going forward if I broke it down to a percentage of my monthly salary.
The infographic above (which I have LOVED producing!) shows the breakdown of my month.
For clarity, my “Income” and the total figure on which these percentages are based, includes my salary post deductions, the money OH transfers for bills each month and any misc income e.g. this month I spent a £100 gift voucher, so added that into my income so as not to skew the percentages. I also have included my expenses “overage” in my income.
When I get paid my mileage for travelling each month, it is based on a set amount per mile, so what I claim doesn’t always match exactly what it has cost me to drive somewhere. This overage is currently going towards my new car savings, but usually, it goes into a general car fund account, to cover any garage visits, tax, MOT etc.
Although I do track my expensed outgoings each week, I’m not including them in my monthly percentages, again, this is another thing which would skew the averages. Some months I’m spending up to 25% of my income on expenses!
You will notice this does not add up to 100%.
Remember I mentioned my small credit card debt? I’ve smashed that right in half! I’ll not touch it for a few months now, as it’s interest free and I just need to put all I can towards the new car.
I’ve not been including credit card repayments in my spending logs, as I’m tracking as I spend ON the credit cards, so that would mean double counting it.
On the whole, I don’t really know what I had expected from this. If it wasn’t for the credit card payments, I would have put more towards my savings, so I don’t think I can be too hard on myself after this month. One thing I was interested to see, was the difference in myself and OH’s spending, especially when it comes to things like groceries. Since he has also been tracking his spends, he’s spent more than me as expected, but not by a huge amount. Considering how much more time he spends at home than I do, it totally makes sense.
I’ve worked out that my “non-essential” spending, which excludes bills, groceries, travel and all expenses, totalled £383.67 for the month. Considering this includes my £100 gift card, and regular(ish) outings with friends, it’s not bad at all.
I do need to remind myself that this has been a short month, so things might not always look so rosy!
I would love something to compare this to, any other twenty-something couples out there fancy a comparison session?!