Here is a breakdown of my expenses for February.
My February expenses were nice and low. Not only did I make my normal goal of keeping my expenses under $1000 a month, I managed to keep my expenses under $900 for the month. Having a short month helped some. The main thing that helped was that I didn’t have any unusual expenses or have any big bills due this month.
Getting my transportation expense down to $79 this month after spending almost $400 last month was the biggest difference in reducing my spending. Since I only live five miles from work I drove a lot less than normal during the month. I also had a credit card cash back amount that I used to cover some of my gas expense. My car didn’t need any expensive repairs during the month. The only problem was a burnt out turn signal bulb which is something I can easily do myself and just had to spend five bucks on a new bulb. I’m hoping my car maintenance stays that simple the rest of the year, although I doubt I’ll be that lucky.
My only travel expense was a $99 annual fee for my new Southwest credit card. This card came with a 50,000 mile bonus which is supposed to be worth at least two flights. After looking at the reward miles options on Southwest, I think I will be able to get three or four flights out of the card. I thought about leaving the fee off since I’ll be getting a lot more value out of the card then the cost of the fee. I decided it would be more accurate to count the fee as a travel expense. The fee was reduced some by a travel redemption on my Barclaycard Arrival™ World MasterCard® – Earn 2x on All Purchases. I do have a short vacation planned at the end of this month so this category might be a little higher unless I can get some more free travel from my credit cards.
The entertainment expense might have been a tinier bit higher than I’d prefer, but it was reasonable since there were a couple of special events during the month. It will probably be a little high again this month since some of my vacation costs will likely be categorized as entertainment expenses.
My other expenses should remain about the same. I’m hoping March can be another low expense month.
3 thoughts on “February Expenses – $892.17”
That’s not bad at all Andy. I should look into the Southwest card. I had one a few years ago but got rid of it.
What’s your opinion about tracking the expense of acquiring a vehicle? I may buy a new-to-me car and am thinking about “expensing” its cost based on the miles I drive every month. Of course, the easiest thing to do would be to post the full cost of the car in the month I buy it.
With my last car I didn’t add the expense of buying it to my monthly expenses since it would have thrown my average out of whack. I did include all the license, registration, insurance and other fees in my expenses. When I eventually sell the car or junk it I might put the difference between what I paid for it and what I get for it as an expense. Doing a monthly expense based on mileage would probably be the most accurate, but it would also be more work.
The SW card is good with the bonus. I don’t think I’ll renew once I have spent my bonus miles though.
The way I am looking at it, a car is nothing but an expense since it depreciates. I want to account for that expense so that I am reminded how much it is costing me to own one. I figure if I remember to take an odometer reading the last day of every month, and “assume” the life of the car will allow for “X” miles, I can average out what I paid for the car on a monthly basis.