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March 2015 Results

April 1, 2015

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If you thought last month’s budget looked crazy, this one is going to be even worse. 🙁 It’s not that I did horrible with spending (ok, I did in some areas), but I had some carryover money from my 2014 year-end bonus, plus I ended up with some extra money from taxes too (more on that later).

Extra money is always a good thing, but it’s hard to account for it and track it in my monthly budget when there’s such a huge carryover in my account from month to month. I like having extra money, but it’ll be nice once all the bills are in and I can put the remaining funds toward debt and savings so my account and budgets look a little cleaner again.

March was super crazy and I’m not even sure how I feel about it yet. I did okay with most of my goals, but I did have a couple of failures this month too.

2015 Goals:

  1. Increase emergency fund savings account to $1,500. – Pass – I increased my emergency fund by $72.37 in March. This is just shy of my monthly target of $83.33. Luckily, I am still on track for the year due to the extra I saved in February.
  2. Demolish $5,000 worth of debt (principal). This works out to $416.67/month. ($5,000 goal includes mortgage debt pay down.) – Pass – I paid down $833.61 (including my mortgage), which puts me $1,057.52 ahead of schedule when combined with the overpayments I made in January and February. I have paid off almost half of my yearly goal already, at $2,307.60.
    1. This also includes paying off my 0% interest promotion for my computer by October 2015.
  3. Paint and prep home office by April 13. (My birthday!) MUST BE USABLE BY THIS TIME! – Pass – It’s still not quite complete. I got my blind in March and have hung it up. Now I just need to paint and rehang the closet doors and make a decorative curtain.
  4. Attend FinCon15 and pay for everything in cash! – Pass – I continued to save money for my trip to FinCon15 and I have my ticket purchased and a room reserved. I have enough saved up to pay for my round-trip flight which I will be booking soon.
  5. Quit my full-time job by December 31,2015 to freelance full-time. (I may pick up some additional hours at my part-time job to help make ends meet for a while.) – Pass-ish? – I guess this is a pass since I’m still working hard on freelancing and putting money toward debt and savings.
  6. Limit spending on clothing, shoes, and accessories to $500 for the whole year! – Fail – I’ve spent $521.31 on clothes, shoes, and accessories this year. I will try to have a post about my plan for this soon.
  7. Get rid of more books throughout the year than I get. – Pass-ish? – I didn’t get rid of any books in March, but I have an entire box with books that I’m going to be getting rid of soon. I did get three new books given to me in March.

Debt Totals:

2/28/2015 – $132,332.61 (including mortgage)
$16,514.46 (w/o mortgage)

3/31/2015 – $131,498.94 (including mortgage)
$15,895.46 (w/o mortgage)

Difference – -$833.67 including mortgage
-$618.99 w/o mortgage

Savings:

2/28/2015 – $664.00
3/31/2015 – $736.37
Difference – $72.37 Increase

Budget:

CategoryBudgeted AmountActualDifferenceCarry Over Cash
Charity$10.00$20.00$-10.00$0.00
Saving$20.00$72.37$-52.37$0.00
Gifts$20.00$158.59$-138.59$0.00
Mortgage$852.28$852.28$0.00$0.00
House Repairs$15.00$0.00$15.00$90.00
City Bill$110.00$100.29$9.71$0.00
Gas Bill$56.65$56.65$0.00$0.00
Cable$86.18$71.49$14.69$0.00
Internet$51.87$51.87$0.00$0.00
Phone$102.95$102.95$0.00$0.00
Food$120.00$126.89$-6.89$1.34
Medical$20.00$9.76$10.24$35.63
Fuel$60.00$100.68$-40.68$0.00
Car Repairs$15.00$10.00$5.00$80.00
Auto Insurance$96.26$0.00$96.26$0.00
Clothes and Hair$80.00$386.74$-306.74$0.00
Pets$40.00$96.75$-56.75$0.27
Household$20.00$41.26$-21.26$10.05
Personal$50.00$321.66$-271.66$0.00
Crossfit$80.00$80.00$0.00$0.00
Cleaning$90.00$90.00$0.00$0.00
Debt$529.07$830.35$-301.28$0.00
BFF Visit$125.00$110.82$14.18$0.00
TOTAL$2,650.26$3,691.40$-1,041.14$217.29
FT Income$2,088.04$2,102.81$14.77$0.00
FT Job Bonus and Taxes$0.00$2,096.87$2,096.87$0.00
Side Income$565.00$1,364.90$799.90$0.00
Difference/Total$-3.90$1,872.18 Carryover$1,870.40$217.29

My budget looks a little crazy again this month as I got some extra money from taxes and I also had some of my bonus money left over to spend too. I am hoping to put a big chunk of this $1,800 toward necessary things like home repairs and the remaining will go toward debt or savings. I am waiting on a couple of bills to come in for home repairs that I hired done (HVAC stuff) so we’ll see how that turns out.

Like always, I went over in my personal/entertainment category and in my clothes and hair category. I also overspent my $500 annual limit for clothes this month. 🙁 I have some ideas of what to do about that and I’ll try to fill you in on my plans soon.

On the positive side, I put extra in my savings account and put extra toward debt, which resulted in me paying off another credit card in March! Woot!

How did your March 2015 results turn out?

Even when I have a not so great month, I love sharing my budget results with you! It keeps me accountable, and shows you that even as a finance blogger, I still struggle sometimes!
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Kayla

Kayla is a mid-20s single girl living in the Midwest, USA. She is focused on paying off her consumer and student loans, while simplifying her life and closet. You can join her on her journey at ShoeaholicNoMore or follow her on Twitter.

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14 responses to “March 2015 Results

  1. Congratulations on your side income. It looks like you are on track to replace your day job. Hmmm, so no more clothes for the rest of the year?

    1. Thanks Tre! I guess I need to really, really crack down on the clothes shopping for the rest of the year now huh?

    1. It is a great problem to have, haha. The only down-side is that it makes my budget look a little messy and it’s harder to track everything. But still, I’d rather have too much money than not enough for sure!

  2. Good job on paying down debt and continuing to hit your marks there, Kayla. A couple things to consider as you tackle shopping for the remainder of the year (and ongoing too): Did you buy things you truly needed and only went over a small percentage of your allotted budget? Or were you shopping emotionally? Those are two different issues. While honoring your shopping budget is important, budgets are also meant to be flexible. Going over by $22 isn’t horrible or world-ending. It just means that you have juggle $22 from somewhere else in your budget. You are allowed that flexibility. If you find that you’re shopping not out of need but out of boredom, loneliness, stress, etc … than that is a different issue. The other consideration is that shopping is something you just truly enjoy. And it’s okay to love shopping, I know plenty of woman who do, but then you need to be honest with yourself and figure out what is a realistic shopping budget for you. For example, you may love shopping and choose to have a larger shopping budget than someone else who may have a larger grocery or dining out or travel or entertainment budget. Budgets are meant to be personal. Shopping may be “frowned upon” by some in the personal finance community but don’t feel you need to impress or keep up with their frugal ways either. You just need to set a realistic budget and be mindful about where shopping fits in with your other priorities. Hope this helps, Kayla. You are truly doing a great job with paying down your debt, so don’t beat yourself over this little stumble. Figure out what you need to do and move on.

    1. Great tips Shannon! I did have a good month overall and some of my shopping was necessary, while some of it was just for enjoyment. I love getting new pieces in the spring, it has always been a bit of weakness as we come out of winter I’m more tempted to shop.

  3. It’s hard sometimes to keep the budget from getting “messy” when you are trying to be fully transparent with everything and things don’t go as planned or you have “extra” money coming from other places… I’m still trying to figure out a good way to do it… My budget recap for March tomorrow may be a little “messy” as well…

    Your March results look pretty great though! Everything is moving in the right direction.

    1. I hate the messy-ness, but you are absolutely right, at least things are moving in the correct direction!

    1. I am so excited for it, I think that’s why I’ve been able to save up for it so easily. I still need to save up for my hotel room, gas to get to the airport, airport parking, and meals. But I have my FinCon ticket, my round-trip plane tickets, and about another $150 (to go toward the other expenses I mentioned) saved up already.

    1. I didn’t go to FinCon last year, though I wanted too. I just didn’t have the funds saved up for it. I’m super excited to be going this year. 🙂

    1. Thanks Jennifer! I have that left over due to bonuses and taxes, but it’s still a good feeling. 🙂

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