So February is a nice short month so in theory this should be a good month for me – the question is… was it?!
So the standard pay cheque went in – still deducting my companies share scheme which is painful but it is a long term bet so I won’t complain! I double checked back to what my income was at the start of this tax year. Worryingly what I am pulling in now is about what it was back then. That means come April when (hopefully!) my tax code sorts itself out again I will be a little better off, but certainly shouldn’t be worse off.
The challenge for me here is that I have upped the amount I put into my rainy day funds, as well as other savings so I am worried it will be tough.
It was confirmed that I have an approximate 3% pay rise this year, which will hit in my next pay (back dated as well!) so that should be nice.
The income from my other half’s ISA was also a slow month so not a great month all round.
So – Christmas is now far behind us, so what did the month look like? Lets dig in….
|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.||39%|
|Groceries||All the food and other stuff needed for home||6%|
|Alcohol for home||Home alcohol consumption only||2%|
|Bicycles / Car related||Any costs related to either the bikes or the car||1%|
|Alcohol Out||Generally, its the pub….||1%|
|Eating Out||I include purchased lunches in this as well as meals out etc.||3%|
|Other||My catch all for anything I may have missed….||3%|
|Holidays||Any spending related to holidays, flights etc.||0%|
|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)||45%|
So although I was really worried about just how much I spent on food for home (and still not quite sure on what), my feeling was that it was not the best of months all round. Having said that, it was still a good savings rate overall just not as high as I would like. The reduced income has caused problems and the only reason that I was able to keep the GTP ISA filling up was by digging into my Cash Flow Fund (CFF).
It is worrying me that not only am I not able to build up the CFF, I am starting to drain it – I can probably only afford one or two months more of this, and I have more than that to go. This means it is going to be tough as I want to increase the amount going into ISAs but that will be a big ask.
So the general stand out for me was “groceries”. I really do not know quite how I spent so much on food. Granted there were a couple of non “food” items in there but still. Seems I just spent a lot. Oh well. I know there were some instant M&S meals in there and some fresh market and butchers meat but…
Eating out was a bit expensive as we went out for a few meals but then I do like to have some life, so I am not going to complain at that.
So I am 5% short of hitting the magic 50% – so reduce the groceries a few percentage, remove the other and reduce the alcohol and I think I could hit it. Would I be happy though, I don’t know.
Either way, 45% I don’t think is to be sniffed at!
How was your February?