November 2014 Income and Spending

I thought it would be curious to start posting my income and expenses, on a monthly basis, both as a point of reference for you readers and as a way for me to publicly keep my shit in line…as best I can.

Another month has come and gone. It’s almost hard to believe that I’ve been at my new job for 2 months now, but really, it’s not hard to believe. Time always passes this way. Anyway…

INCOME

Paychecks: $1523.23
Tips: $6.55
Other: $68.02 (This includes some cash from a gig I played, and some cash back rewards from my VISA that’s paid out every November.)
Interest/Dividends: $7.02

Total: $1604.82


 

EXPENSES

Food

Juice for Booze: $19.24 (this is the “Cider Fund” for our delicious Frugal Home Brew!)
Coffee/Snacks: $57.57
Groceries: $150.39
Booze: $190.38
Fast Food/Restaurants: $87.76

Bills

Cell Phone: $45.8
Rent: $345
Tenant Insurance: $7.48
Internet: $31.04

Gifts

$0.90

Transportation

Taxi Rides: $8
Bike Maintenance: $36.73
Public Transit: $5.50
Gas: $15

Home Supplies and Maintenance

Laundry: $12
Entertainment: $11.99
Kitchen/Bathroom supplies: $4.50
Clothing: $0

Miscellaneous

Music Equipment: $5.87
Misc: $3.33
Albums: $30.45

Total: $1063.06


 

INVESTMENTS

Questrade TFSA Deposits: $698.05
Scotiabank TFSA Deposits: $7
Leftover Savings: $0.02

Total: $705.07


There it is, the dirty numbers. It’s nowhere near as exciting at last month, but all and all it’s not so bad.

A red flag for me is the amount I spent on alcohol. It seems like quite a high number but it does involve a few nights of me purchasing drinks for more than just myself. I also have this tug of war inside of me when it comes to alcohol. I’m a believer that moments, memories and time with people you care about, and love, is far more important than the trinkets and thingy-ma-bobs many people seem to love to collect. Alcohol, whether you agree with it or not, can add a very real social, bonding aspect to nights with people you care about. So, spending a little too much for such relaxing, loving, and memorable evenings is something I’ll admit I’m torn between. I mean, I’m not talking about getting black out drunk or anything, but it can be nice to bask in the drinks’ warm glowing warming glow. Know what I mean?

I’m always a little disappointed when my investments don’t work out to be at least 50% of my take home pay. Investing is key to the financial independence game, and the only way to really get there in 10 years or less is to be contributing 60% or more into the accounts. Now, I try not to beat myself up too much – though Mrs. Bastard would disagree – but it really is the most important part of this journey. Having to work to live is not ideal. I want to live, and then work. Multiple decades of working paycheck to paycheck is such a terrifying thought to me. I won’t have it, and I honestly don’t think you should either.

How do my income/expenses compare to yours? Any tips and tricks you care to share?

October 2014 Income and Spending

I thought it would be curious to start posting my income and expenses, on a monthly basis, both as a point of reference for you readers and as a way for me to publicly keep my shit in line…as best I can.

I’m a little late to the game this month. I’m adjusting to my new job and the 44 hours a week that come along with it, huzzah!

October was a freakishly stellar month, for more than one reason.

INCOME

Paychecks: $2373.69
Tips: $25.85
Other: $165.85 (This includes some cash from a gig I played, a Government tax rebate cheque, as well as income I earned online through Clickworker.com.)
Interest/Dividends: $88.31

Total: $2653.70


 

EXPENSES

Food

Juice for Booze: $4.59 (this is the “Cider Fund” for our delicious Frugal Home Brew!)
Coffee/Snacks: $62.45
Groceries: $100.04
Booze: $147.94
Fast Food/Restaurants: $28.23

Bills

Cell Phone: $57.25
Rent: $86.25
Tenant Insurance: $9.35
Internet: $62.09

Gifts

$0

Transportation

Taxi Rides: $7
Bike Maintenance: $5.02
Public Transit: $8.25
Gas: $10.01

Home Supplies and Maintenance

Laundry: $12
Entertainment: $0
Kitchen/Bathroom supplies: $48.39
Clothing: $0

Miscellaneous

Music Equipment: $5.87

Total: $654.73


 

INVESTMENTS

Questrade TFSA Deposits: $1784.15
Scotiabank TFSA Deposits: $7.83


I can’t say I feel bad seeing almost $1800 finding it’s way into my Questrade account. Knowing that the money I’m saving and investing right now will someday, in the not to distant future, produce enough monthly/quarterly dividends to cover all my expenses is starting to feel pretty damn good.

Speaking of expenses, where’s my “rent” payment, right!? Well, turns out the landlord and property management company that runs our building made a tiny boo-boo and to iron everything out they gave us a break on October’s rent. I’ll take it!

Now my “Paychecks” income is so much higher this month because of two reasons.

1. I started a new position in October that comes with both full time hours and a $1.50/hour wage increase. That’s a raise of about 14% for this guy. If a 30 cent raise is a reason to celebrate, you’d be right in assuming that I’m stoked.

2. A couple years ago I worked for a recording studio in Montreal. A beautiful facility. I worked with a lot of awesome people, and even a couple celebrities; ooh la la. The owner, however, was sort of a jerk and never paid me for the hours I put into the place. In the end I did have some proof, via emails and Studio Session Log Books, that proved I was owed for a handful of recording sessions but it took over two years to push it through the Small Claims Court system. It was worth it though, and I’ll bank the $700 and use it to purchase more low cost Index Funds. Plus, people shouldn’t get away with taking advantage of a dedicated employee.

The beginning is always slow, but as I keep chuggin’ away and investing a few hundred bucks a month into investments I start to feel more and more confident. I mean, it’s only been about a year since I started investing small chunks of cash and I’ve already got to the point where I’m earning $30/month from the dividends. That may sound like a small number, but that’s almost enough to cover my monthly phone bill. So, to relate, imagine all your bills written out on a monthly budget and you’re staring at them, going down the list. Now, you get to cross one of those off the list…forever. NEVER again do you think about paying that bill every month. It’s gone, FOREVER. You’re winning.

How do my income/expenses compare to yours? Any tips and tricks you care to share?

September 2014 Income and Spending

I thought it would be curious to start posting my income and expenses, on a monthly basis, both as a point of reference for you readers and as a way for me to publicly keep my shit in line…as best I can.

Anyway, without further ado, here are the numbers.

INCOME

Paychecks: $1199.89
Tips: $23.48
Other: $97.35 (This month this includes $75 in Futureshop gift cards I received, and some cash from a bottle return.)
Interest/Dividends: $8.18

Total: $1328.90


 

EXPENSES

Food

Juice for Booze: $0 (this is the “Cider Fund” for our delicious Frugal Home Brew!)
Coffee/Snacks: $17.81
Groceries: $105.74
Booze: $67.97
Fast Food/Restaurants: $0

Bills

Cell Phone: $51.39
Rent: $258.75
Tenant Insurance: $7.48
Internet: $31.04

Gifts

$2.36

Transportation

Taxi Rides: $0
Bike Maintenance: $0
Public Transit: $11
Gas: $0

Home Supplies and Maintenance

Laundry: $12
Entertainment: $155.36
Kitchen/Bathroom supplies: $26.29
Clothing: $30.06

Miscellaneous

$0

Total: $777.25


 

INVESTMENTS

Questrade TFSA Deposits: $534.80
Scotiabank TFSA Deposits: $8.18


Alright, so there it is! Another month has come and gone, money in and money out.

My investment deposits this month are a little disappointing. I aim for a 50% savings rate but have been struggling to reach that amount these past couple months. This will change in October when both my hourly wage and my weekly hours go up! Hurrah for promotions.

Typing remains difficult as I’m still stranded with a cast on my right wrist, so reflecting on the numbers is going to be limited.

You may notice a new category called “Entertainment.” This represents my purchase of a Kobo Arc. I consider this purchase a 50/50 draw between entertainment and investment. I’ve already started reading much more because of it, and after discovering such nifty “Brain Exercising” apps such as “Luminosity,” “Elevate,” and “NeuronNation” it’s actually become  a very positive piece of workout equipment.

My spending on “Booze” is high. I’d like to keep it between $30 and $50 a month, but with some extra friend hang outs this month it caused a few more dollars to be sent in that direction.

An absolute HUGE success this month was the lack of going out to eat! I’m proud of this because it can be such an overwhelming temptation. SELF HIGH FIVE.

Well, that’s it from your friend The Frugster today.

How do my income/expenses compare to yours? Any tips and tricks you care to share?

August 2014 Income and Spending

Alrighty, so here we are with another month that’s come and gone and it’s time to air out the unmentionables.

FYI: I broke my right wrist this week so I’ll be keeping things short and sweet. And yes, I’m right handed…boo…

Anyway, here are the numbers.

INCOME

Paychecks: $1084.80
Tips: $6.95
Interest/Dividends from investments: $18.71
Other: $56.92 (This includes $40 from a gig with my band, $4 from returned bottles and $12.92 I received from SOCAN as a royalty payment for a tune of mine that is currently being used in a TV show across the pond in the UK.)

Total: $1167.38


EXPENSES

Food

Juice for Booze: $17.97 (this is the “Cider Fund” for our delicious Frugal Home Brew!)
Coffee/Snacks: $37.43
Groceries: $115.89
Booze: $20.42
Fast Food/Restaurants: $56.90

Bills

Cell Phone: $34.35
Rent: $258.75
Tenant Insurance: $5.61
Internet: $23.28

Transportation

Taxi Rides: $24
Public Transit: $8.25

Home Supplies and Maintenance

Kitchen/Bathroom supplies: $11.05
Clothing: $5.25

Miscellaneous

Drivers License Renewal: $84
Gifts: $19.11
Records/Albums: $2.09
Other Misc: $11.13

Total: $ 735.48


INVESTMENTS

Questrade TFSA Deposits: $428.47


So right off the bat you can see that my bills are much more in line with my “normals” compared to July’s numbers. My philosophy of paying my bills weekly is working out swimmingly, and I’d recommend it to anyone who finds paying it all with that one paycheck at the end of the month too stressful and depressing.

I was successful in basically cutting my expenses on booze and restaurants/fast food in half, which is a reason to celebrate!

My overall hours at work were cut back, so my income was on the low side of things this month. That being said, I was still successful in saving and investing $428.47.  A savings rate of about 36 or 37 percent. That amount was transferred directly into my discount brokerage account and was used to buy some more low cost Index Funds.

Well, that’s it from your friend The Frugster today.

How do my income/expenses compare to yours? Any tips and tricks you care to share?

July 2014 Income and Spending

I thought it would be curious to start posting my income and expenses, on a monthly basis, both as a point of reference for you readers and as a way for me to publicly keep my shit in line…as best I can. I have to admit, this is probably the weirdest month I could have started on. Me and the Mrs. Bastard just moved into a new place so we’re just getting use to some of the new bills. We also had to pay a doublewhammy in terms of our rent because the security deposit is equal to one full month, effectively making us feel like we paid rent twice. We get it back when we move out of course, but at this point it still feels like another expense…money that up and vanishes like a fart in the wind. Along with the rent situation we had to order “new” internet service, and I also haggled my phone carrier to drop my monthly bill from $55/month down to $40. WIN! I’ll be explaining my “bill paying” philosophy in a later post, so I won’t worry about that now.

Anyway, without further ado, here are the numbers.

INCOME

Paychecks: $1426.59
Tips: $7.35
Other: $235.91 (This includes the odd cash I get from music gigs, and from the Mrs. Bastard when she needs me to order her something with my Visa…it’s a little misleading.)
Interest/Dividends: $64.43

Total: $1734.28


 

EXPENSES

Food

Juice for Booze: $36.05 (this is the “Cider Fund” for our delicious Frugal Home Brew!)
Coffee/Snacks: $37.14
Groceries: $82.37
Booze: $67.86
Fast Food/Restaurants: $122.20

Bills

Cell Phone: $60.05
Rent: $1121.25
Tenant Insurance: $9.35
Internet: $69.88

Transportation

Taxi Rides: $24
Bike Maintenance: $65.12 (Purchased my first headlight for night time commutes to work! Excited for this thing to arrive!)
Public Transit: $2.75

Home Supplies and Maintenance

Laundry: $10
Kitchen/Bathroom supplies: $19.28

Miscellaneous

College Application Fees: $100
(Whoa! College you say?! YUP. More to come on that one later on.)

Total: $ 1827.30


 

INVESTMENTS

Questrade TFSA Deposits: $676.55


Alright, so there it is! Now, as I mentioned, this really is a weird month for bills. It looks like I spent more then I earned, but that’s actually not the case. The rent also seems CRAZY! high, but it really isn’t. In Mid-June, when we knew we were moving into this place, the Mrs had a little more disposable income then the Bastard here, so she slammed down $690 to cover the Security Deposit and to hold the place for us. I agreed to pay both of our share of rent for the month of July, to balance it all out. And again, like I mentioned above, I have a particular bill paying/transferring philosophy that I’ll be explaining later. Likely in the next post.

As I’m sure many of you know, moving is always a stressful time. So, some of those expenses were definitely move related! We also had some family down and visiting from Ontario, so we splurged abit on restaurants and alcohol. The Coffee/Snacks department was a little high in my opinion too. We brew up tasty coffee at home, and we can make a batch of delicious popcorn, so there’s no reason to spend that much on frivolous chips, candy, and Tim’s. I’ll blame this one on the buzzes we got from indulging abit too much in store bought alcohol this month! ha.

Even though it was a hectic month I’m still really excited to see that I was able to save and invest $676.55! That’s my favourite part of this whole game. Keeping tabs on what I’m able to save and invest. As soon as the money ends up in the Questrade account I end up picking up more ETF’s, courtesy of Vanguard Canada. So exciting!

Well, that’s it from your friend The Frugster today.

How do my income/expenses compare to yours? Any tips and tricks you care to share?