I discovered, in August, the hottest month of my social calendar (not!), I spent 20% of my monthly income on clothes and eating out. That's dangerously close to the percentage financials advisors suggest you pay on shelter. I made only three visits to the grocery store, totalling $62.44, and often felt like I had nothing to wear. The nail in the coffin? The amount I thought I paid monthly for my gym membership, was in fact coming out of my bank account twice a month.
|Late night poutine is good. But not |
worth the hit to my bank account.
On the bright side, those are line items I can spare. In the month of October, I will spend $0 on clothes and will bring my lunch to work everyday. With those two lines cut down, I'll get back one third of an entire pay cheque.
Unfortunately, this isn't the first time I learned this lesson. I told my boyfriend during my sick leave, "it's surprising how easy it is to trim the fat off your expenses." But maybe that's the point, a budget isn't meant to be a sporadic review of your expenses. It has to happen regularly.
Despite having delayed this resolution until just before I reach 100, I've yet again, learned my lesson. I will make a monthly budget exactly that often. That way, though they're not an immediate priority, a house, kids, and travel can still be an option for the future.