Going Through the Percentages

I keep a rough spread sheet budget going every month to help me figure out how much money I need to pay on what and how much money I’ll have for food per day and for gas and stuff.

I decided to what put what I pay into what into a percentage form, just to see what percentage of my income I put towards the various aspects of my life.

Here is how it looks:

Bills – 37.9%
Debt – 24.1%
Savings – 3.9%
Food – 11.7%
Other Expenditures – 16.4%
————————
Total – 94%

I was actually shocked that the number came below my total income, but then again these are idealized numbers assuming that I keep on budget. I feel reassured that I have a 6% buffer for unexpected expenses, but think that I can use that buffer to my advantage. I also don’t like that I’m only saving 3.9% of my income per month. This just seems ridiculously low (though I guess with debt as high as I have the fact that I’m saving at all is good).

Anyway, the moral of the story is two-fold. First, because of my $200 food budget I’m going to attempt next month I’ll be bringing my food percentage down to 8% of my net salary. (Perhaps 10% would be a good compromise to think about? We’ll see) Second, I want to increase my savings to 5%. This means I’ll be putting an extra $25 away each month in savings. I have a feeling that I won’t particularly notice $25 missing, so I think this is an excellent thing to try. And hey, can you really go wrong adding money to the emergency fund? I think not! The sooner I can get myself to my goal of $1,200 the better!

I had posted previously that I thought that I might not be able to get all three of my goals for 2009 accomplished. However, a month later, and as I’m making forecasts for next month and September it seems more likely that I’ll be able to meet them.

One thing I do have to keep in mind is that I’ll need to get tickets for Thanksgiving (sooner rather than later, of course, currently they’re at $300 round trip) and I’ll need to start thinking about Christmas presents. I have already got my grandma one thing, but would like to get her *something* else. I should probably start this month buying something for each person so that come December I’m not strapped for cash. Ack, I can’t believe I’m already thinking about Christmas, but it will be here sooner than I’d like. Maybe I’ll manage to get some decent presents with some of my Amazon.com giftcards from Swagbucks. That would certainly save me some money! Actually, this is a FANTASTIC idea! I currently have $20 in unused giftcards and another $30 in unredeemed gift cards. That’s $50 that could go towards a really great gift! And with another 3-4 months of searching to go, lets just say getting 2 swagbucks a day (easy enough to do, I could EASILY have another $25! That’s $75 in giftcards just for searching the internet and would DEFINITELY buy a couple decent gifts for people on my Christmas list! Man, that is really exciting. =)

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2 Responses to Going Through the Percentages

  1. Punch Debt In The Face says:

    Totally awesome that you look at the percentages of where your spending goes. Even more awesome that you have a good chance of reaching your 2009 goals. Keep analyzing and changing behaviors and you'll be sure to crush them all.

    On a side note, I just added you to my blogroll…sorry it took so darn long 🙂

  2. Punch Debt In The Face says:

    Totally awesome that you look at the percentages of where your spending goes. Even more awesome that you have a good chance of reaching your 2009 goals. Keep analyzing and changing behaviors and you'll be sure to crush them all.

    On a side note, I just added you to my blogroll…sorry it took so darn long 🙂

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