Tuesday, December 17, 2013

January 2014 no/low spend challenge



Carla at HalfDozendaily is running a challenge:

http://halfdozendaily.typepad.com/my-half-dozen-daily/2013/12/who-else-wants-to-join-in-my-january-no-low-spend-challenge.html

With recent news that I will be on unpaid leave, I have joined in. I'm reviewing my upcoming bills and hope to limit cash outlay to the following basics the next few months. I will get an actual date for my upcoming leave tomorrow (supposedly) and will then be able to connect with work, HR on this and figure out just how this is going to pan out. Meanwhile, I anticipate taking a MAJOR hit in income, starting in March, for approx. one month. I have to await the final word from HR, however.

So, in anticipation of this turn of events, my cash outlays will include just the following (hopefully):

-rent
-life insurance
-utilities: electric, cable, cell, heating oil, Netflix (currently on a special promotion and will be my entertainment while recouperating)
-hair care
-cat supplies (mostly litter as I just stocked up on huge bags of food for each)
-grocery (limited to essentials)
-newspaper (considering dropping it, if not dropping down to just Sun)
-gas (which will drop while I am prohibited from driving)
-car repair: I need to get an oil change this week
-trash fees
-plowing service (5 times alone this week! argh!)
-cleaning service (a luxury for many, but with my limitations, and now surgery, this is essential)

Understand that my monthly budget accounts for EVERY known expenditure, the above list is what we MUST be paying out the next few months. Luckily, I've prepaid some things, stocked up on items (such as groceries, cat food, laundry detergent):

-year's worth of car washing vouchers
-6 months auto ins
-12 month rental ins
-enough wood for the stove on hand
-no upcoming birthdays/celebrations anticipated
-just got books of stamps
-credit card paid off today, as it is paid monthly

Next up: picking out an automatic transmission car. DD and I spent some time on line, comparing deals/incentives, models, etc. My bottom line, however, is how much will they give me for my current car, and how much will my payment be, and at what % interest for financing? I have a set figure in mind for how much I'd like a car payment to be as well, keeping in line with what I was paying for my current vehicle. I have a month, approx., to acquire a car, which will again be an economy car with at least 35 mpg.

2 comments:

Bargain Mom said...

I know I told you how much I love the milage with my Prius, my parents have always had corollas and camarys. Both of those get good milage too without the outlay of hybrid engine cost....just something to think of.

Marcia in rural WNY said...

I don't know if you're old enough for AARP yet, but if so, they have a deal which saves money on cars. I don't know for sure if it applies to used cars, but I know my BIL saved about $3K on his, after negotiating for his best price. He did have to drive some distance to a certain dealer, but for that much, it was worth it. Check out the AARP magazine if you get it. Join as soon as you can, however--there are really helpful tips and information in their publications.