Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Spending Breakdown

Since I am now on a quest to spend way less than I make (which is a pitiful amount) I thought that the best place to start would be with a break down of how I spent my last paycheck - which, if you were wondering, is GONE. I have $1.42 that has not been dedicated to anything left in my checking account. I got paid on November 14, 2008 and $610.91 was put into my checking account (I actually was paid more than this, but a percentage of each of my checks goes strait into my emergency fund and I don't count it at all to ensure that I don't try to spend it).
  • Fun/Unnecessary to my life spending: $334.40
    • $7 = ATM fees
    • Includes bars/ticket to Bears game/costume/NetFlix/iTunes (1 song)
    • $82.18 = charged to CitiCard
  • Payments and Savings: $336.49
    • Includes deposit into car savings/credit card payment/overdraft payment
  • Things I NEED: $73.59
    • Includes a doctor co-pay/gas/cold medication
  • Other: $4.77
    • Includes turkey for work/coffee for the drive home
Now, while this paints a fairly accurate picture of my spending habits, it is a little skewed because I went out of town during the November 21 - 23 weekend and spent a lot more than normal. However, I think that for the most part this is something that I can work with. For my next few paychecks I am going to have to add heavily to my emergency fund because Boyfriend and I are going to be moving in together and I will have to come up with my half of the rent on a consistent basis, and for those weeks where I don't hit the 40 hour mark I might need a little help and that is where the help is going to come from. So for right now ... this is how my paycheck is going to be put to work.
  • Average Paycheck = $639.60
  • Average Automatic Deposit to Emergency Fund = $76.75
    • Balance = $562.85
  • Extra Deposit to Emergency Fund = $150
    • Balance = $412.85
  • Deposit to Car Fund = $100
    • Balance = $312.85
  • Payment to Citi Card = $75
    • Balance = $237.85
  • Payment to Mom and Dad = $75
    • Balance = $162.85
  • Cash Withdrawal from the Bank (to avoid ATM fees) = $100
    • Balance = $62.85
The rest of the cash can be used for gas, or can be put into a savings account, or maybe even used to pay off my debt to my parents. I am going to use this 'budget' starting with my next paycheck, which will come to me on the 1st of December. Hopefully I can stick to my guns and to my budget and come out ahead on all this. Getting control of my finances will give me a sense of empowerment that I really could use right now. I'll let you know how it goes.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Running out of Money = Badness.

I feel constantly that I am missing the mark with this whole budget, don't spend more than you make thing. I have a social life (read: I still go out with my college friends and drink every weekend) and I have recently picked up a few hobbies that require me to spend in order to do them (I have started knitting and sewing which means I need money for yarn and fabric). If I get 40 hours every week, which doesn't happen a lot, I make around $319.80 per week. That works out to be $1,279.00 a month.

Now, I might just be really hard on myself, but I feel like I should be able to live comfortably on that. Not to mention the fact that I earn around $200 extra for babysitting each month. I can't help but wonder why it is that I run out of money like clockwork about a week after I get my paycheck and end up having to use my credit card for things that I absolutely need in order to function (like gas). It's so frustrating to have to tell my friends that I can't go out because I have no money and then have to explain to them that I really have no money and I'm not kidding. Plus, it makes me hate myself for making $200 payments on my card twice a month and then have it count for nothing when I have to use it in between paychecks. So, I think it's safe to say that it might be time for me to do a few things.
  1. Look over my budget and rework it.
  2. Think of a system to stop running out of money in between paychecks.
  3. Ask for a raise.
I have been mentioning getting a raise to my supervisor for a while now. I am only making $9.75 an hour right now (as an almost 24 year old college graduate) and I am doing the work of three people. Yup, I said three (like ... the number. 3. 3 people.) I am doing all the work for my SEO internship, plus helping to answer the phones until our regular receptionist comes back to work at the beginning of December, and learn to be an eMarketing Strategist for when she goes on maternity leave sometime in late December/early January depending on when the baby comes (he is a super baby. He weighs 2.5 pounds more than he should for how far along she is.).

I like my job, and part of the reason that I haven't been more aggressive about getting a raise is that I'm scared that they are going to tell me to take a hike and then I'm going to be stuck making $0 an hour, which sucks way more than making $9.75. But as of December 8, I will have been working here for 8 months so I think it's time for them to consider it. I hope that they'll give it to me and then ask my why I took so long to ask for it. That would make me way happy. But, I just can't support myself on what I'm making now and that's just not fair.

Once I get my budget worked out I'll post it for you to see. And the same with my system for not running out of money. Stay tuned! The next few posts could be really interesting ...