Budget revision & update

December 2, 2008 at 6:22 pm (budget)

Well, after a month and a half start I think I have enough data to realize what tweaking I can make to my budget. This is a long journey (6 years), so I’m not making severe cuts that I can’t maintain from month to month.

I’ve kept under my $100 restaurant budget (woo hoo!), one of the worst budget offenders, but I’m going to keep it as is and just try to not to eat out (maybe one nice meal per month). I’m spending a lOT more at the store on food, and even with buying most of it and not always being reimbursed from my bf, I’m way under. I’ve reduced it to $350, and I may do so again next month (I think $300 is a good goal). I’m going to raise my photo expenses – I had to print and mat a work for a group show this month, and I unexpectedly bought some film for my recent trip (even though i didn’t end up using it). I also have some potential long-term spending I’ll talk about in another post.

I’m reducing my entertainment budget; I don’t use it! Thank you Seattle Public Library! I overspent on my home budget, buying a necessary 2nd pair of sheets and a warm throw for my unheated studio. I raised this category as I’ll have to be buying some heaters soon, and probably some kitchen stuff, even though I have a very well-stocked kitchen (as someone who *loves* to cook). Luckily so far, it has been above average temperatures, so I still haven’t felt necessary to turn on the heat in our space, and I normally never make it to November (my usual goal).

I considered putting any unused budgets into my emergency savings (with a goal of $1000), but I’m not quite sure I have a handle on my spending/income enough to be comfortable with that. I did decide to put some amount per month into savings, about $100-200, so I think I’ll be ok.

Congratulations to me! I did it! I spent 15% less than my income this month, even with a significantly reduced 2nd paycheck. Next month will have another very small paycheck, so while I’m on my way and reducing debt, I’m slower than I’d like.

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