So, firstly I hope everyone had a great Christmas break? It was certainly a very busy December for us – we squeezed in an extra week of holiday, a surprise birthday celebration with an overnight stay, a number of social evenings, and a couple of Christmas lunches – ensuring we have enough leftovers to last for some time!
Although pay comes in early in December, I treat it as not hitting my account until the usual date so that I don’t spend too much! I am still waiting for one more Visa bill to land but I believe I have set aside the funds for all of this already (and covered in this months expenses), so hopefully no unpleasant surprise coming in the new year!
So, onto the details.
So as always I had my steady Salary drop into my bank account, always nice. I don’t include any of my personal ISA dividends in my income statement, that is just part of the growth of those portfolios.
The income thrown off by my other half is included, however this is an incredibly small amount at present (less than 1% of income) so it is more of a statistical error but gets thrown at the mortgage to chip away a little more at a time.
So, steady as she goes on income – very slowly creeping up based on the income from my other half’s ISA.
|Things I choose not to avoid*||Mortgage, Insurance, shared bills etc. – yes, we could move somewhere cheaper, not have insurance, reduce our bills a bit and so on, but we are where we are.||42%|
|Groceries||All the food and other stuff needed for home||5%|
|Alcohol for home||Home alcohol consumption only||0%|
|Bicycles / Car related||Any costs related to either the bikes or the car||0%|
|Alcohol Out||Generally, its the pub….||3%|
|Eating Out||I include purchased lunches in this as well as meals out etc.||2%|
|Other||My catch all for anything I may have missed….||16%|
|Holidays||Any spending related to holidays, flights etc.||8%|
|Savings||Anything left over! This includes money into ISAs, mortgage payments and non relief pension contributions. My company pension comes out before it hits my bank account so isn’t included, nor do I include the “top up” of money when my money goes into my personal pension (i.e. I put in £100, I register it as £100, not the £125 that gets credited in my pension)||24%|
* This covers a number of things that I would class as essential for me. Yes, I could move to somewhere cheaper to reduce the mortgage (which in turn would reduce the insurance I have to pay), yes I could reduce my bills by switching energy supplier etc. but it comes down to what I am happy with. There are a few other things in there that are classified as essential that others may object to, and so I have just lumped it into there.
So what to make of this month?
My standard stuff shows no change that my essential cost of living remains at 42% – hopefully this will remain this way as there isn’t a lot else I can trim yet.
Groceries would have been a lot lower but this is a reflection of Christmas and all the food we got in for that – plenty now in the freezer, and still working through some of the cheese!
Alcohol was surprisingly low as well, although we were away and so food and drink for that came under “holiday”.
Eating out was very low this month due to going away a lot, and also a couple of lunches provided courtesy of work due to meetings and workshops, always helpful.
Holiday. So some more time off and away at a self-catering location – it’s a lot cheaper in winter as not many people want to do it then!
Other. Ok so this was a lot higher than I was expecting and hence the savings rate dropped so much. This was further fall out from November working its way through – a bit of a shame otherwise I would have had what I consider a great December but it is what it is.
Savings. So a little lower than expected with the further fall out from November, but still I won’t complain too much – I am in a fortunate position and I know that.
How was your Christmas and December? Did it blow your savings, or did you manage to keep control over the festive period? Also, does the table layout for the expenses work for you, or would you prefer it just listed?