Another month complete, another spending report up on the blog. August has been notably quieter than June and July, which I am extremely grateful for. We’ve had some quieter weekends which have been welcome and have pretty much spent most of the month excited for our holiday at the beginning of September. We haven’t had a proper extended break yet this year and it’s definitely telling on our mental and physical states!
credit cards: how we buy everything
easier to track expenses
We track every single penny we spend. So, we like to do most of the spending on one card. I also have my card linked to my phone so I’ll get a notification every time I use it – easy to pop the expense in our budget tracker right then & there.
Our credit card is a BA rewards card, so we earn Avios points whenever we spend on it. We’re formulating some pretty ambitious travel plans so these points are going to come in very handy!
build our credit
For simplicity, we could just pay on our debit card for everything, particularly as it would be even easier to track expenses that way instead of using a credit card and debit card (when our Amex isn’t accepted in some places). However, it’s important to build up our credit history and maintain a good credit score rating.
And yes, we pay off our credit card in full, every month.
how we organise our expenses
As I alluded to in an earlier post, we track every single penny – more on our budget strategy in this post here. So what we generally do is put numbers next to categories but those numbers aren’t set in stone. We generally try to spend as little as we can, with those figures there to guide us. In my report, I haven’t added the planned numbers, just the actual spend.
what you won’t see here on a month-month basis
We pay for some things up front on an annual basis. All our insurances are paid this way, as is the car tax and we tend to do our charitable donations all in one month at year end. Those expenses will pop up in the month they’re paid.
|Housing (rent & council tax)||£1761|
|Utilities (electricity, water, tv, music, mobile phones, broadband, cloud storage)||£171.33|
|Food (groceries, household goods, food out (work lunch & eating out))||£666.30|
|Personal spending (own money, haircut, work clothes)||£241.40|
|Transport - train (commuting)||£369.59|
|Transport - car (petrol, parking fees & tolls)||£44.07|
|Misc spending (incl health spending)||£380.76|
Total £3,743.75 || Savings rate 49.2%*
*(excludes passive income)
notes on august
- Mr NC bought some more cycling equipment which is in the ‘train – commuting’ category as he switches to cycling to work.
- We upped our grocery budget to £425 a month as that’s what we seem to averaging a month now since we switched to buying organic meat. Not that it necessarily matters as our budget is always just a guide for us but for some reason it makes me feel happier seeing that we’ve met budget and not ‘overspent’ when our groceries budget was £350 a month.
- There was exam success in our family in August which is reflected in the special occasions category as we gave some well done gifts.
- I’m still buying supplements for my digestive condition which explains the higher than normal misc spending.