I can’t believe it’s December already!
November Spending Breakdown
I spent a total of $3,742.66 last month. I am pretty darn impressed with myself. A whopping $1,519.45 went to student loan PRINCIPAL payments. I split all of my student loan payments into principal and interest. All of the “Fees & Charges” in the ugly orange-ish slice of pie are student loan interest. One set of loans doesn’t show this nicely, so it’s approximated based on the interest that was accrued in my last statement, but this set accrues the lowest interest anyway, so any inaccuracy isn’t affecting the total too much.
I’ll be interested to see how much this horrible interest amount changes as the months go on. Hopefully paying extra on principal will help bring this number down! I hate throwing away $700 a month!
I spent a lot on transportation this month. This included purchasing a AAA membership. My old car insurance had roadside assistance. I reviewed my insurance paperwork and discovered that my current policy only appears to have towing with a $50 deductible. So I’ll be removing that, and seeing what other discounts I can get with the AAA membership. I was really hoping I could get a discount on my phone plan, but it looks like it only applies to new plans (Signing up for Sprint? Get a AAA membership first–it could pay for itself). The rest is my train pass – $335 – gas and insurance. I did pretty decent with gas this month, and hopefully prices will continue to go down! Only one more month of free parking at the more expensive train. I’ll probably stick with it, even though it’s more expensive, because the gas savings are pretty significant.
I did well on damn near everything else this month. I did some necessary work clothes shopping on eBay this month, and was very happy with my purchases, and especially the price I paid for them. I don’t expect to do any more shopping for myself in December, but I might start creeping on some auctions again in January.
Here is the bar graph of my spending in the last six months. My attempts to split my student loan payments into principal and interest in October were a big fail. As a result my spending in October is extremely inaccurate, and should be ignored.
But seriously, November was a small improvement over September, when I spent a total of $3,910–and that was only paying an extra $400 or so on one set of loans, as opposed to the $725 extra in November. We’re just going to pretend July and August didn’t happen at all.
Not Eating Out!
I definitely have decreased the amount of money spent on food in the last two months, especially take-out/delivery/buying lunch. For Thanksgiving, I visited my dad for breakfast in the morning, and had the turkey with my boyfriend’s family. We (he) also made a turkey at my place yesterday so that I would have my own set of leftovers–which means I won’t be buying lunch or dinner, at least at the beginning of the week. And really, I had no idea how to make a turkey, and now I have a better idea at least. Mostly I know that if we ever have to host Thanksgiving, he has a pretty good idea what he’s doing.
Did you all have a good Thanksgiving? Any suggestions for how to avoid breaking the bank on the December holidays?