My expenses in 2017 were almost $3000 less than in 2016. My expenses for 2017 were $13,697.14 compared to $16,431.20 in 2016. My total expenses in 2015 were $16,999.41 and in 2014 they were $15,775.65. That makes 2017 my lowest spending year of the last few years even though 2017 was my highest earning year. My income the previous years was roughly 33% to 50% less than it was in 2017.
My total expenses for 2017 only includes $505 that I paid towards my student loan although I paid about $15,000 total towards my student loan during the year. Paying so much towards my student loan helped reduce my spending since it left me with less money to spend elsewhere. Since I wasn’t required to make any of these extra student loan payments I’ve decided to leave out the extra payments since they distort what my spending looks like.
My biggest expense for the year was $5490 for rent. This amount will be even less this year as I’m only paying $435 a month for rent now. That is about as good of a deal as you can get in Kansas City.
My second biggest expense for the year was $1957.56 for food. $1322 of that was for dining out, which I consider to be way too high. The dining out total was slightly inflated due to eating on vacation, but even considering that I think the food spending was way too high. I plan to significantly reduce food spending this year.
Two other big expenses were medical expenses of $1527.06 and household expenses of $1090.57. The medical expenses will be way up this year as I have an over $2000 medical bill due. Plus my health insurance premiums are higher. That will be slightly offset by lower household expenses this year. The 2017 total included $300 for lifetime internet and larger than normal expenses due to buying some furniture and other stuff when I moved into my new apartment. I don’t anticipate any big household expenses this year so this expense should be a few hundred dollars less this year.
My car expense was $1254.40 which is probably about what it will be again this year. The total included $570.45 for gas with the rest of the expense being for repairs, insurance, license, registration, and tax.
The rest of my expenses were $314.13 for my cell phone, $500.65 for movies and entertainment, and $1057.22 for travel. The cell phone expense should be about the same this year. The movies and entertainment might be slightly lower now that I have Moviepass to save money on movie tickets.
The 2017 travel total included round trip airfare for two from Kansas City to Paris. It also included over two weeks of hotel, hostel, or Airbnb nights in Europe. That included the Park Hyatt Vendome in Paris which would have been about $800 a night if we had been paying cash. I also had a short four night trip to Vegas. The use of credit card points, discounted gift cards, coupons, and travel deals allowed me to get an excellent amount of value for the amount of money I spent on travel. I’m not sure how much I’ll spend on travel this year. It will depend on where I decide to go and what kind of deals I can find.
My guess is that my expenses will go up this year. Last year was a pretty lucky year that mostly didn’t have any expensive surprises. I’m sure there will be some surprises this year, but hopefully they won’t be too expensive and I can keep my spending in the same range it has been the last few years.