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DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


I posted this in the budgeting thread, and was told to start a separate thread, and that I have tons of bad habits. I'll admit I already know that.

So, my most recent mistake was probably spending buying this sock puppet account to make this post because there is definitely a decent amount of doxxable info on me out there on the web, and I'm here giving out some pretty detailed vital information. I hope you can forgive me for trying to stay a bit private.

Given that I've created the following excel spreadsheets, screenshots below(unless someone knows a better way to upload an excel spreadsheet other then taking screenshots of it)








Why am I coming to BFC for some help? My wife and I make a decent wage, we're nearly thirty, and yet I still feel like we live nearly paycheck to paycheck. There is nearly 10k coming into our household on a monthly basis, but yet we don't save any money. We've only recently(after selling the house which had a 2700$ a month mortgage) put 1.5k a month for the last 2 months into our Savings(Line 29), bringing the total up to 19k(the previous 16k took 3 years to get into the house fund, and included 6k profit from the sale of our old home...so more like 10k in 3 years). To buy the house we really want, in the area we want, with a 20% downpayment, we really should have 70ish stashed away.

Can BFC help me identify where the money is leaking out of our budget, and how to stem a ridiculous outflow of cash? How to save the money we need for a house, and perhaps plan a bit better for our retirement? Or is this question a bit out of the scope of this thread, and worthy of its own thread?

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E the Shaggy
Mar 29, 2010


10k a month after taxes and you're having trouble saving???

After debts and expenses, you both seem to still have 6k left over. Where's all that going exactly?

John Cenas Jorts
Dec 21, 2012


Youíve listed your regular monthly expenses, but you havenít given any information about your more flexible spending (which is probably where you are loving yourself). Go back through your receipts/credit card history and figure out how much you are spending per month on food, entertainment, gadgets, booze, etc.

Why are you not actually putting how much you owe on the Nissan/student loans? I donít think anyone will be able to identify you by that. Or is it because you just didnít have that information in front of you when you made the spreadsheet? Look that up and also note your interest rates for everything

No Wave
Sep 18, 2005




John Cenas Jorts posted:

Youíve listed your regular monthly expenses, but you havenít given any information about your more flexible spending (which is probably where you are loving yourself). Go back through your receipts/credit card history and figure out how much you are spending per month on food, entertainment, gadgets, booze, etc.

Why are you not actually putting how much you owe on the Nissan/student loans? I donít think anyone will be able to identify you by that. Or is it because you just didnít have that information in front of you when you made the spreadsheet? Look that up and also note your interest rates for everything
Use Mint for this - it's way fast.

skipdogg
Nov 29, 2004
Resident SRT-4 Expert


Your money is more than likely being blown by discretionary spending. Probably nothing even major, just tons of little 15 to 40 dollar charges that add up to real money over the course of the month. Take a look at your credit card statements. You both go out to lunch during the work week? That's probably 12 to 15 dollars a person per day. Multiply out by 20 work days a month (for the sake of keeping things simple), and now you've both spent 300 dollars (600 total) eating out for lunch. I know drat well you're eating out for dinners as well as a young couple with no kids. Let's throw out a conservative 400 a month for that, but I would wager its probably closer to 800 maybe even 1000. So now we're at 1 to 1.5K a month just eating out. You can go on and on, but all those little expenditures that don't seem like much at the time, add up over the course of the month. Think about it. You guys drink? A decent bottle of wine can be 20 to 25 bucks. Craft beer? The wife enjoy weekly nail salon trips? 20 bucks here, 50 bucks here, 30 bucks there and it goes fast.

skipdogg fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 05:39

zmcnulty
Jul 26, 2003



imgur is blocked by my company so I can't see your screenshots, but if you have 6k leftover every month you certainly aren't living paycheck to paycheck. As others have pointed out it's probably just being blown on random stuff.

I was in a similar situation a few years ago -- making decent money but wasn't making much progress on paying down loans/saving for retirement. I was basically spending the money because I had it.

So what works for me is depriving myself of the money. Set yourself up with an account (mutual funds are all the rage these days) that can do auto-withdraw from your normal spending account, the day after your paycheck gets deposited. That way you don't even see the money to begin with, so no temptation to spend it.

Start with a small amount and gradually build it up. Make sure to keep your safety buffer as well, most people suggest 3 months of expenses.

Gamesguy
Sep 7, 2010



If you're eating out a lot consider hiring a chef. A while back I also used to eat out pretty much every night and saved a lot of money after I hired a personal chef who comes in once a week and cooks me a week's worth of dinners. You get a restaurant quality meal with better and more healthy ingredients for less cost.

Gamesguy fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 08:56

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


Gamesguy posted:

If you're eating out a lot consider hiring a chef. A while back I also used to eat out pretty much every night and saved a lot of money after I hired a personal chef who comes in once a week and cooks me a week's worth of dinners. You get a restaurant quality meal with better and more healthy ingredients for less cost.

This isn't a bad idea. Do you mind sharing what it costs you in your area to do that?

skipdogg posted:

Your money is more than likely being blown by discretionary spending. Probably nothing even major, just tons of little 15 to 40 dollar charges that add up to real money over the course of the month. Take a look at your credit card statements. You both go out to lunch during the work week? That's probably 12 to 15 dollars a person per day. Multiply out by 20 work days a month (for the sake of keeping things simple), and now you've both spent 300 dollars (600 total) eating out for lunch. I know drat well you're eating out for dinners as well as a young couple with no kids. Let's throw out a conservative 400 a month for that, but I would wager its probably closer to 800 maybe even 1000. So now we're at 1 to 1.5K a month just eating out. You can go on and on, but all those little expenditures that don't seem like much at the time, add up over the course of the month. Think about it. You guys drink? A decent bottle of wine can be 20 to 25 bucks. Craft beer? The wife enjoy weekly nail salon trips? 20 bucks here, 50 bucks here, 30 bucks there and it goes fast.

Actually, I do have the luxury of having lunch provided to me daily by my company. My wife does buy lunch probably every day, so that is probably 2-300 a month.


No Wave posted:

Use Mint for this - it's way fast.

I had a Mint.com account, and sorta stopped looking at it. I'll update it now and see where things go from there...

Droo
Jun 25, 2003



* Replace your credit card with a good gas/rewards combo of two cards. I use the PenFed 5% gas visa card and the Fidelity 2% amex card. With your numbers that would get you about $250 from the gas card a year and $600 from the amex card a year.
* You own four vehicles and yet take a train to work? How much fun can the motorcycles really be in New England, what do you get like 4 months a year at most to enjoy them?
* Why don't you have a 401k listed? Does either of you have access to one?
* I imagine you have a ton of dog related expenses other than boarding once a year and food, you need to include those.


You guys really seem like the perfect candidates for a physical cash-only budget, at least for a few months. It can be a very eye opening experience. I suggest you and your wife sit down several times over a couple weeks and try and plan your entire life - do you want kids, how many, when do you want to retire, how expensive a house are you going to want (pay attention to school district if you want kids), how many/what kind of vacations do you want to take yearly, etc. Figure out where your priorities are and start adding them to your budget.

For example, you want three kids and you want to pay for college for them? Figure out what that should cost monthly and add a line item.

You want a $500,000 house in four years? Add $2000 per month to your downpayment fund.

It seems to me in most of these budget threads where the people have plenty of money, the problem is always that they don't have any idea what they are sacrificing when they blow their money on extra vehicles/eating out/etc. If you both can agree on a life plan then it should be much harder to justify an extravagant $200 dinner out, since you'll know your are delaying/giving up some portion of kids college, new house, early retirement, etc.

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


Droo posted:

* Replace your credit card with a good gas/rewards combo of two cards. I use the PenFed 5% gas visa card and the Fidelity 2% amex card. With your numbers that would get you about $250 from the gas card a year and $600 from the amex card a year.
I actually already use PenFed for the 5% gas card, thanks! We prefer Cabelas because we do a lot of outdoorsy things, and Cabelas gives us 1% cash back. I know its not 2%, but that might be 1-200$ a year we are losing?

Droo posted:

* You own four vehicles and yet take a train to work? How much fun can the motorcycles really be in New England, what do you get like 4 months a year at most to enjoy them?
My option is to
a) drive 2 hours to and from work in traffic(increasing gas consumption and stress, I'm sure)
b) take a 30 minute train ride, where I sit in AC, and don't have to worry about traffic

As to the bikes, they are treated as toys. I drop the insurance significantly lower, but they don't cost that much on a year to year basis(300$ a year to insure, gas and maintenance is maybe another 3-400 a year?)

Droo posted:

* Why don't you have a 401k listed? Does either of you have access to one?
We have no 401k matching at our jobs, so we chose to max an IRA
We have a financial advisor that costs us 600$ a year. He's done pretty good as far as getting us to invest that 900$ a month...in the past we weren't investing at all

Droo posted:

* I imagine you have a ton of dog related expenses other than boarding once a year and food, you need to include those.

Other dog expenses might be another 1k a year. I'd really have to do the math on what we spent in the last year. Seeing as they are small, they don't require a ton of upkeep

Ashcans
Jan 2, 2006

Let's do the space-time warp again!


What are 'matches'? I guess you compete in some sort of sport or something? The only reason I ask is because I wonder if you are being honest (with yourself, not us) about the costs of that hobby.

It's amazing to me that you have four vehicles. Why is that? You take the train to work, so you only need one car as a daily driver, right? Do you and your wife have dramatically different schedules that mean you can't generally share a car? I understand that a motorcycle doesn't replace a car year-round in New England, but if you aren't commuting in the Subaru is it really worth $350 a month sitting in your garage?

You really need to break down that credit card spending. You are spending triple your rent on a 'daily' credit card, with no accounting as to what that is. You need to identify it, and it won't surprise me if it turns out you are spending a thousand bucks a month on totally random crap.

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


Ashcans posted:

What are 'matches'? I guess you compete in some sort of sport or something? The only reason I ask is because I wonder if you are being honest (with yourself, not us) about the costs of that hobby.

It's amazing to me that you have four vehicles. Why is that? You take the train to work, so you only need one car as a daily driver, right? Do you and your wife have dramatically different schedules that mean you can't generally share a car? I understand that a motorcycle doesn't replace a car year-round in New England, but if you aren't commuting in the Subaru is it really worth $350 a month sitting in your garage?

You really need to break down that credit card spending. You are spending triple your rent on a 'daily' credit card, with no accounting as to what that is. You need to identify it, and it won't surprise me if it turns out you are spending a thousand bucks a month on totally random crap.

Wife leaves an hour before I do, mainly to avoid serious traffic. Her commute is roughly 45 min. It's(the train station for me) 10 minutes drive away. During the summer I tend to ride my bike to and from the train. The subaru is used all weekend for transportation to and from matches(yes this is a sport event). We also work about 20 miles apart, so driving together wouldn't work.

I could analyze better what we spend, but match fees do run(for the 2 of us, together) 500ish (or less)a month. For example: we spent 40$ this weekend, but the prior weekend spend 120. We also skipped one of the matches this weekend(which would have been 80$ for the two of us for just that match), because we didn't wanna get out of bed, which is an awful excuse.

DogsCantBudget fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 16:13

BossRighteous
Dec 28, 2002



You're into dog fighting aren't you. The dog bills, the "matches", the secretive income...

In seriousness with your income you could get a very affordable 15yr loan with negligible PMI.

Waiting long enough to raise your down payment might allow interest rates to creep up enough to undo the savings avoiding the PMI. Something to consider if you are otherwise in a good position and mindset for a home. I would figure out your discretionary spending first though.

Harry
Jun 13, 2003


DogsCantBudget posted:

Wife leaves an hour before I do. It's 10 minutes drive away. During the summer I tend to ride my bike to and from the train. The subaru is used all weekend for transportation to and from matches(yes this is a sport event). We also work about 20 miles apart, so driving together wouldn't work.

I could analyze better what we spend, but match fees do run(for the 2 of us, together) 500ish (or less)a month. For example: we spent 40$ this weekend, but the prior weekend spend 120. We also skipped one of the matches this weekend(which would have been 80$ for the two of us for just that match), because we didn't wanna get out of bed, which is an awful excuse.

Just use mint and save the 4 pages that you slowly list all the expenses. You're obviously spending more than what you posted unless your wife is transfering $5000 a month out of your account.

No Wave
Sep 18, 2005




What sport is this? That's a lunatic rate. Those are country club rates for millionaires. Get realistic - you have negative net worth right now in the tens of thousands.

Totally agree on making a life plan - like, kids, retirement, travel, etc etc. Right now money has little meaning to you - what's the opportunity cost of a dollar if you have no idea where you actually want it to go?

I also don't understand how your wife's ten minute drive each way leads to $400 a month in gas bills. a.) She'd be better off biking, and b.) assuming that's a five mile drive (which would be long for ten minutes), that shouldn't be more than about a tank of gas a month.

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


No Wave posted:

What sport is this? That's a lunatic rate. Those are country club rates for millionaires. Get realistic - you have negative net worth right now in the tens of thousands.

Totally agree on making a life plan - like, kids, retirement, travel, etc etc. Right now money has little meaning to you - what's the opportunity cost of a dollar if you have no idea where you actually want it to go?

I also don't understand how your wife's ten minute drive each way leads to $400 a month in gas bills. a.) She'd be better off biking, and b.) assuming that's a five mile drive (which would be long for ten minutes), that shouldn't be more than about a tank of gas a month.

Sorry I misspoke. She commutes 35 miles each way. The train is 10 minutes each way....

Rurutia
Jun 11, 2009


This is a waste of everyone's time and effort if you're not going to be more transparent about your spending and answer all the questions. Hell, in your original budget you list a line for dog food but not for your own food? Come on. Do you want help or not?

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


No Wave posted:

What sport is this? That's a lunatic rate.

Sorry, I won't specify the sport, as it would identify this puppet account pretty quickly(i'd judge it's pretty unique on this forum based on a previous post about it, and the small number of us that actually participate in it here on SA).

Rurutia posted:

This is a waste of everyone's time and effort if you're not going to be more transparent about your spending and answer all the questions. Hell, in your original budget you list a line for dog food but not for your own food? Come on. Do you want help or not?

I'll make an effort tonight to spend time in Mint.com prioritizing and identifying what expenses go where so I can give more info. I literally did this last night over an hour. I'll also provide what I come up with at the end of the night tonight.

a worthy uhh
Dec 28, 2006



It's Horse Dancing, OP is Tagg Romney.

OrangeKing
Dec 4, 2002

They don't play in October.


Droo posted:


How much fun can the motorcycles really be in New England, what do you get like 4 months a year at most to enjoy them?

There are lots of motorcycles in New England - other than for maybe three months in winter, of course. Then again, I suppose that would be different in Portland, ME than it is here in Connecticut, so that would depend a lot on where the OP is.

DogsCantBudget posted:

Sorry, I won't specify the sport, as it would identify this puppet account pretty quickly(i'd judge it's pretty unique on this forum based on a previous post about it, and the small number of us that actually participate in it here on SA).

I suppose this is reasonable: if I were trying to hide my identity, talking about my curling and chess expenses would pretty quickly narrow down the options. Still, it does seem like a lot of money for just about any sporting activity.

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


OrangeKing posted:

There are lots of motorcycles in New England - other than for maybe three months in winter, of course. Then again, I suppose that would be different in Portland, ME than it is here in Connecticut, so that would depend a lot on where the OP is.
Tons of bikes out here. Wife and I enjoy riding them together. I agree, bikes can be ridden here through early November, and perhaps starting in late March(I think that's when I dewinterized, though I also went for a ride with a friend in an unseasonably hot day in January)

OrangeKing posted:

I suppose this is reasonable: if I were trying to hide my identity, talking about my curling and chess expenses would pretty quickly narrow down the options. Still, it does seem like a lot of money for just about any sporting activity.

Note that the 500 is for 2 people. So now consider that its 250$ a person per month, and only during the months of Mid May -> October. From November to Mid May it runs 40$ a month(each) but its a different version of the same sporting event.

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


BossRighteous posted:

You're into dog fighting aren't you. The dog bills, the "matches", the secretive income...

In seriousness with your income you could get a very affordable 15yr loan with negligible PMI.

Waiting long enough to raise your down payment might allow interest rates to creep up enough to undo the savings avoiding the PMI. Something to consider if you are otherwise in a good position and mindset for a home. I would figure out your discretionary spending first though.

Perhaps in your area, this is a reasonable amount. The cheapest loan I could get with PMI around here for a house that meets our requirements is in the 400k range(houses in the area we live in are very expensive, my old loan was a "very" reasonably priced house around here, and it was 2700$ a month). I'd like to find a way to save up a bunch for a year, and hope that rates don't jump over the next year. If I could somehow find a way to "save" that 6k(hell save 3k of it instead of 1500) for 12 months, thats a big down payment which would make getting rid of PMI quickly (even if I had to take it at first) a reasonable goal. I just really don't want to go in with a 5% down scenario(or a 3.5% down scenario like the old place, which was a mistake!).

skipdogg
Nov 29, 2004
Resident SRT-4 Expert


You guys are missing the point. His gas bill isn't the problem, his sport isn't the problem, the motorcycles aren't even the problem. The problem is the unaccounted 3 to 4 thousand dollars a month that's being pissed away on lord knows what. Until he comes back with an analysis of a few months of spending we can't help the guy.

He's bringing home 10K a month, the guy can afford motorcycles and his sporting expenditures. BFC seems to think everyone needs to live like a pauper and spend 120 a month on groceries, and drive old beater vehicles.

OP, I agree with the earlier statement that you need to map out a clear financial plan with goals you want to achieve and how you're going to do it.

GoGoGadgetChris
Mar 18, 2010


Max out your 401k even if you don't have matching. The tax relief is "free money" as well.

Don't use an IRA instead of a 401k, use it in addition to it. $5,500 (max IRA contribution) isn't enough annual savings to ever retire.

BossRighteous
Dec 28, 2002



DogsCantBudget posted:

Perhaps in your area, this is a reasonable amount. The cheapest loan I could get with PMI around here for a house that meets our requirements is in the 400k range(houses in the area we live in are very expensive, my old loan was a "very" reasonably priced house around here, and it was 2700$ a month). I'd like to find a way to save up a bunch for a year, and hope that rates don't jump over the next year. If I could somehow find a way to "save" that 6k(hell save 3k of it instead of 1500) for 12 months, thats a big down payment which would make getting rid of PMI quickly (even if I had to take it at first) a reasonable goal. I just really don't want to go in with a 5% down scenario(or a 3.5% down scenario like the old place, which was a mistake!).

Yeah, Phoenix has a lot of affordability range. I've never been to the NE to know the pricing spreads.

Poison Cake
Feb 15, 2012


If you want to aggressively save, something has to give in your lifestyle. The something might be the sporting events you attend or eating out or some other form of entertainment, but there's no painless way to aggressively save. OTOH, it's a lot less painful for you than it is for a lot of other people, so, I'd think seriously about how much genuine pleasure you're really getting from some of these activities and if they're really worth the price tag.

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


GoGoGadgetChris posted:

Max out your 401k even if you don't have matching. The tax relief is "free money" as well.

Don't use an IRA instead of a 401k, use it in addition to it. $5,500 (max IRA contribution) isn't enough annual savings to ever retire.

I agree. Once we figure out where that 3-4k is going a month, I'd love to throw 1500 a month(or more) into our 401k's(Ideally maxing it out would be what? 1500 a month *each*?

skipdogg posted:

You guys are missing the point. His gas bill isn't the problem, his sport isn't the problem, the motorcycles aren't even the problem. The problem is the unaccounted 3 to 4 thousand dollars a month that's being pissed away on lord knows what. Until he comes back with an analysis of a few months of spending we can't help the guy.

He's bringing home 10K a month, the guy can afford motorcycles and his sporting expenditures. BFC seems to think everyone needs to live like a pauper and spend 120 a month on groceries, and drive old beater vehicles.

OP, I agree with the earlier statement that you need to map out a clear financial plan with goals you want to achieve and how you're going to do it.

Thanks, I think that's what we have to sit down and identify in the near future

DogsCantBudget fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 17:07

Haifisch
Nov 12, 2010

Most things in the world aren't black, aren't white, aren't wrong, aren't right, but most of everything is just different.


DogsCantBudget posted:

This isn't a bad idea. Do you mind sharing what it costs you in your area to (hire a personal chef)?
I have an even cheaper option called "cooking" that you can do yourself for the fraction of a cost of a restaurant meal or a private chef. After a bit of practice, it even tastes as good - or better! - than restaurant meals. It also doesn't take as long as the image most people have built up in their heads of slaving away at a hot stove for 5 hours; for most meals, the bulk of the time will be unattended heating & occassional stirring.

Not only would this reduce your food costs for dinners(and maybe even breakfasts, if you're in the habit of grabbing something at Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts instead of making your own quick meal), but your wife could replace her expensive work lunches with leftovers.

DogsCantBudget posted:

Once we figure out where that 3-4k is going a month
Do you make most of your purchases on a card of some sort? If so, Mint will be able to pull those transacations so you can get a quicker look at them than having to wait a month to tally up receipts. You may have to go through the history and recategorize some things(Mint tries to do this itself, but it's not perfect), but having to take a closer look at this stuff isn't a bad thing.

skipdogg posted:

BFC seems to think everyone needs to live like a pauper and spend 120 a month on groceries
Grocery costs vary so much by area & diet that it's hard to call something expensive/"living like a pauper" without knowing more detail. $140 a month is just fine for me, but I don't eat much meat, I try to avoid prepackaged meals, and I don't drink soda. Those are three things that will inflate grocery costs very quickly if you don't keep an eye on them.

SlapActionJackson
Jul 27, 2006
I'm comin to getcha

Is the $7800 the amount you owe on the Cabela's card or the credit limit? If you owe that much, you should pay it all off, dipping into savings if necessary (I guarantee you're paying more to the card in interest than you're earning on the savings account).

Ashcans
Jan 2, 2006

Let's do the space-time warp again!


skipdogg posted:

You guys are missing the point. His gas bill isn't the problem, his sport isn't the problem, the motorcycles aren't even the problem. The problem is the unaccounted 3 to 4 thousand dollars a month that's being pissed away on lord knows what. Until he comes back with an analysis of a few months of spending we can't help the guy.

Yea, I got distracted because the car payments are about half of his debt payments, making it seem like something worth considering. But the total debt payments aren't a significant dent to begin with, not when there is a $3500 hole in the numbers.

skipdogg
Nov 29, 2004
Resident SRT-4 Expert


DogsCantBudget posted:

I agree. Once we figure out where that 3-4k is going a month, I'd love to throw 1500 a month(or more) into our 401k's(Ideally maxing it out would be what? 1500 a month *each*?

Roughly 1300/mo each, but that's pre tax. You both maxing out your 401K would drop your taxable income 31,000 a year saving you probably 8K+ a year just in federal taxes.

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


SlapActionJackson posted:

Is the $7800 the amount you owe on the Cabela's card or the credit limit? If you owe that much, you should pay it all off, dipping into savings if necessary (I guarantee you're paying more to the card in interest than you're earning on the savings account).

Total limit for that card is 10k. An 800$ payment went in today. Balance is currently 7k. I didn't include it earlier(because I didn't think it was important, nor do I think it is now), but my total credit limit, if I was stupid and maxed it all out, is somewhere in the 100s of thousands range. My wife and I both have 780 credit scores(according to our last monthly checkup that our bank does for us for free)

Haifisch posted:

I have an even cheaper option called "cooking" that you can do yourself for the fraction of a cost of a restaurant meal or a private chef. After a bit of practice, it even tastes as good - or better! - than restaurant meals. It also doesn't take as long as the image most people have built up in their heads of slaving away at a hot stove for 5 hours; for most meals, the bulk of the time will be unattended heating & occassional stirring.
Not only would this reduce your food costs for dinners(and maybe even breakfasts, if you're in the habit of grabbing something at Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts instead of making your own quick meal), but your wife could replace her expensive work lunches with leftovers.

Actually we love to cook, but just don't have lots of time. We both come home exhausted and just aren't usually up to cooking. We also have a problem of tending to keep our fridge "empty". We always end up saying "wanna go shopping for food? Nah, lets go out to restaurant X". Dinners tend to run 50$ if we go out, usually with a beer or 2 included. We do have once a week breakfast out for ~20$.

When we do have leftovers, wife definitely takes them to work the next day, or we even eat them for dinner the next day if there is enough.

Haifisch posted:

Do you make most of your purchases on a card of some sort? If so, Mint will be able to pull those transacations so you can get a quicker look at them than having to wait a month to tally up receipts. You may have to go through the history and recategorize some things(Mint tries to do this itself, but it's not perfect), but having to take a closer look at this stuff isn't a bad thing.
It's definite that we make most of our purchases on the Cabelas card discussed above.

Droo
Jun 25, 2003



DogsCantBudget posted:

I didn't think it was important, nor do I think it is now

You have no kids, no house, you just had to recently downsize your apartment, relatively insignificant savings based on your income and spending, AND $7000 in credit card debt. To say you don't think that's an important thing seems like a psychological defense mechanism.

That debt is basically proof that you can't even live within your ample means when you have two steady, large incomes and no real expenses. It should really be a wake up call that you need to change and actually start seriously thinking about what you're doing wrong. How are you going to function if you want a house, a kid, someone loses a job, etc?

Rurutia
Jun 11, 2009


I cook once a week. A pot of rice, a huge pot of thick stew (chili, curry, beef stew, etc), some sort of roasted meat (pulled pork, shredded chicken, pot roast), and premix a salad with blue cheese/salami/etc. Once a month, I pickle vegetables or make kimchi.

Sometimes, when I'm working from home, I'll mix together a huge batch of dough that I keep in the cooler and take 10min or so a day to bake fresh bread from that batch.

We spend about $300 per month on food in an average cost of living area and as you can see, we eat very healthy and well. All told, I spend 4-5 hours over the weekend doing this, and the best part about this is how little dishes we do.

Droo posted:

You have no kids, no house, you just had to recently downsize your apartment, relatively insignificant savings based on your income and spending, AND $7000 in credit card debt. To say you don't think that's an important thing seems like a psychological defense mechanism.

I think he was talking about his total credit limit.

Rurutia fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 17:36

DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


Droo posted:

You have no kids, no house, you just had to recently downsize your apartment, relatively insignificant savings based on your income and spending, AND $7000 in credit card debt. To say you don't think that's an important thing seems like a psychological defense mechanism.

That debt is basically proof that you can't even live within your ample means when you have two steady, large incomes and no real expenses. It should really be a wake up call that you need to change and actually start seriously thinking about what you're doing wrong. How are you going to function if you want a house, a kid, someone loses a job, etc?

Woah..I was saying that my max credit limit/credit scores are/were unimportant....I totally get the fact that I have 7k credit card debt is not good.

Also, the reason we downsized, was because we sold our house, and have yet to find one we like in the area we want to move to. We're actively looking, but while we're in a cheap apartment, I figured why not fix our budgetting?

DogsCantBudget fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 17:34

April
Jul 3, 2006



quote:

Actually we love to cook, but just don't have lots of time. We both come home exhausted and just aren't usually up to cooking. We also have a problem of tending to keep our fridge "empty". We always end up saying "wanna go shopping for food? Nah, lets go out to restaurant X". Dinners tend to run 50$ if we go out, usually with a beer or 2 included. We do have once a week breakfast out for ~20$.

When we do have leftovers, wife definitely takes them to work the next day, or we even eat them for dinner the next day if there is enough.

Ok, here's a super-easy and inexpensive fix for that:

crockpot365.blogspot.com/2007/12/alphabetical-listing-of-recipes.html

Buy a slow cooker. You can get a good one for $40 or less, and a decent one for $30. Go through the site, figure out 5-6 meals you'll like, and make one trip to the store for ingredients. (That site I just posted has hundreds of recipes, so even if you guys are picky eaters, there's something you'll like.)

The first few trips will be a little expensive if you don't have a lot of spices, but once you buy them, you'll have them for quite a while. Stick with frozen veggies, so if you don't use them right away, they won't go bad. Put everything you aren't using the next day in the freezer. You can toss pretty much everything in the slow cooker still frozen. Wake up 15 minutes early, and put dinner on before you leave for work. Leave it on low all day, and presto!! You have dinner already made when you get home exhausted.

I work a lot of hours & don't feel like cooking when I get home either, so we use the slow cooker 3-4 days a week. Seriously, I don't know why everyone doesn't do this.

Rurutia
Jun 11, 2009


I had this in an edit so I think it might've gotten lost:

Dogs: You do not make enough money to live a completely carefree lifestyle and have all the luxuries you want. My fiance and I make about the same take-home as you guys after maxing 401k, and we live very well. We eat out 4-5 times a month, we go out twice a week, we see shows, we travel. But we also save 45% of our post tax income (usually more but this year we're buying a house we're putting 20% down on which will need a larger renovation budget). I think you know you have a huge problem here, but I just really want to hammer that home.

Cicero
Dec 17, 2003

Jumpjet, melta, jumpjet. Repeat for ten minutes or until victory is assured.

DogsCantBudget posted:

Actually we love to cook, but just don't have lots of time. We both come home exhausted and just aren't usually up to cooking. We also have a problem of tending to keep our fridge "empty". We always end up saying "wanna go shopping for food? Nah, lets go out to restaurant X". Dinners tend to run 50$ if we go out, usually with a beer or 2 included. We do have once a week breakfast out for ~20$.
So you frequently go out to eat for dinner at $50 a pop and didn't include that in your original spreadsheet? That sounds like a big chunk of the hole people are looking for. A few months back I usually went out for lunch at work and the wife and I ate at restaurant a two or three times a week, that added up to several hundred dollars a month on eating out. I have since repented.

Cicero fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 17:50

Walked
Apr 14, 2003
A DAMN fine gentleman dahling

:sips brotein:


DAMN fine



OP you sound ridiculously like myself and my fiancee before we got our poo poo together. Similarities are eerie down to the income (within 500/mo net of eachother), regularly going out to eat when we didnt feel like cooking, etc.

The biggest holes we plugged were:
- Eating out. Between two people eating out for lunch regularly (3x/week?) and dinners at around $50 each, it adds up FAST (eat out 4 nights a week for a month and you're talking $800/mo on dinners alone). The fiancee still thinks we can get away with eating out more often, so we've agreed to eat out twice a week as our treat, and we split a meal at least one of those two. That really kicked our food numbers WAY WAY WAY down.

- Random purchases that dont seem that bad compared to your income (doubly so when you put it on a card) that you can easily convince yourself they're "one off" purchases. Yeah, that bike is a "one off" $1000 purchase for me; but when I was having monthly "one off" purchases and she'd do the same it'd add up to $1-2k/month wasted. So silly, and so easy to do.

Once those two were fixed all of a sudden we were throwing TONS of money at debts and into savings without even having to try, struggle, or change anything else in our lifestyle (that's not to say we arent working on the other more minor faults that need improvement, but those did make the bulk of the different off the bat).

Really, seriously, look at your expenses and figure out where it's going.

Walked fucked around with this message at Jul 8, 2013 around 17:58

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DogsCantBudget
Jul 8, 2013


April posted:

Ok, here's a super-easy and inexpensive fix for that:

crockpot365.blogspot.com/2007/12/alphabetical-listing-of-recipes.html

Buy a slow cooker. You can get a good one for $40 or less, and a decent one for $30. Go through the site, figure out 5-6 meals you'll like, and make one trip to the store for ingredients. (That site I just posted has hundreds of recipes, so even if you guys are picky eaters, there's something you'll like.)

The first few trips will be a little expensive if you don't have a lot of spices, but once you buy them, you'll have them for quite a while. Stick with frozen veggies, so if you don't use them right away, they won't go bad. Put everything you aren't using the next day in the freezer. You can toss pretty much everything in the slow cooker still frozen. Wake up 15 minutes early, and put dinner on before you leave for work. Leave it on low all day, and presto!! You have dinner already made when you get home exhausted.

I work a lot of hours & don't feel like cooking when I get home either, so we use the slow cooker 3-4 days a week. Seriously, I don't know why everyone doesn't do this.

Thanks that's a great website. We actually already have a great crockpot. My problem(and more so my wife's problem) is she gets bored of eating the same thing 3+ days in a row. It seems that all crock pot recipes tend to be "large portion sizes". Neither of us is a picky eater, we'll try anything twice, but there is that boredom issue. I'm totally cool with eating Chili or whatever for 3 days, but she's not too keen on the prospect.

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