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Free Spending Spree Day

February 16th, 2013 at 01:38 am

Do you get bored with saving money all the time and feel you need to break the mould sometimes. Well I do as have been on this quest for more years than I can remember now!

When I was a pre-teen my pocket money was two shillings per week, (24 pennies) now days thatís amount would be 20 cents. Value today I have no idea about $2.00. My way of thinking was if an item cost more than 1/11 or 23 pennies, I couldnít afford it. When I got my first pay from my first job things got a little better, after paid my board and fares I had about 10 shillings ($1.00) per week to spend. Wages were about 1 pound and 18 shillings ($3.80) in those early months, this was 1960.

I am retired now and on age pension but my thought patterns are the same almost. Today I save money then I can go do what I like for one day every so often, given certain amount to spend and place to spend to go spend that money or some of it!

Sometimes itís a school fete or op shop or trash or craft market often times it may be shopping centre if in need of some new clothes or appliance. I do set amount that I can spend on these days, most times I never go over it. I never have many of these days about four per year. I had about three last year; one while I was in Sydney and I bought some kitchen items and had the goods posted home.

I call these days ĎFree Spending Spree Daysí and was shopping in Aldi on one of these days last Christmas said to another customer that I was free to buy what I would like today if I wanted too! Would I like to buy her children, both were in the shopping cart? I just smiled and wished her a Merry Christmas and walked on I think she was having a bad day. I only spent about $100 that day as I was buying Christmas gifts too!

Two House Repairs within 24 Hours

February 1st, 2013 at 12:10 am

Both have a water theme, leaking water to be correct. One was just a simple tap washer that I was able to get my neighbour to fix, I do have a lot of taps washers here so I donít have go out and buy some to do the job, as getting someone to do the job more of a problem. Hot water shower was dripping like mad when I came home yesterday.

The day before I had another drip but this one was a major one, water dripping from a power socket, on a weatherproof switch not good, I turn the switch off to see where the water was coming from and found coming out of the one of the socket for the power plug in part from my solar hot water unit this is the power that pumps the water to the roof for the solar panels the unit and itís not 3 years old yet. I phone my Home Assist people to order an electrician to look at it. With the flooding it will be up to week before they may come out. I was told. Within two hours the electrical company was on the phone and they would have someone out that afternoon, the young guy arrived he looked a teenager to me mostly likely in his early twenty.

He never seen as much water either so we checked the tank and when he pulled on a cord from the switch water came running out of the tank element area it was rusted in so had to be replaced a long with the power switch unit. So it costed 2 hours labour $176 and parts $100 less my senior discount of $88 for one hour labour. Total came to $188.00 all up. Thatís why I rang Home Assist so I could get my discount for how long this service will last I donít know as our state government is cutting cost in all areas.

As had good and friendly service all round so I paid the bill next day. For bad service they would have had to wait full 14 days before I paid it!

Surviving the heat here!

January 19th, 2013 at 08:00 pm

I think we have got it lucky here as the heat has not been as bad as in some places around the country. Sydney had its hottest day since record begin about 105 years ago 46.5C . Here we got to about 35C and Ipswich got to over 40C which is only 30km away but inland not on the coast. I still havenít put my Air Conditioner on as I can stand the heat up 36C than I will think about if the there is no breeze, so I am saving money by only using a standing fan near my computer with all the doors open for any breeze. I canít do any gardening as the sun is too hot to be out in to do it. In January it is always like this so minimum gardening. The lawns are almost dead as we have had no rain for at least 6 weeks then very little of it.

Still no spending here as I am on my six no spending day in a row. Most likely will spend something tomorrow and on Tuesday my car goes in for a major service and new tyre I think I will get the spare tyre put on with this new one and use one of the old ones as a spare. I have to pay some bills this week so may go the city or a major shopping centre to that sometime this week after the car is fixed.

All my money will be spent on bills this month so I have got no money to spend anyway!

Annual Budget Report for 2012

January 1st, 2013 at 08:18 am

Annual Summary Daily Living Allowance parts of my budget for 2012

Here are my final totals for last year.

Eating out- $455---------- $441.95---------under target by $13.05
Groceries -$1655-----------$1368.82--------under target by $256.18
Non-Food -$195------------ $200.41---------over target by $5.41
Clothes -$400---------------$250.28.--------under target by $149.20
Grooming -$260-------------$339.05--------over target by $79.05
Gas -$200------------------- $122.71------- -under target by $77.29
Pets -$200--(5 months)-----$274.52--------over target by $74.52
HH items -$520-------------- $468.29--------under target by $51.71
Fares -$380-------------------$360.75 ------- under target by $19.25
Entrainment -$520-----------$658.58-------- over target by $138.58
Garden-$100------------------$7.00-----------under target by $93.00
Gift & Donations -$455-------$584.73---------over target by $219.95
Medical & Diabetic-$910------$1045.22 -------over target by $135.22
Misc. -$75--------------------$29.00----------under target by $46.00
Personal Allowance-$1170----$1004.28--------under target by $165.72

Daily Living Allowance allotted amount for 2012 was $7495 and I spent total $7155.59 under target by $339.41

Even with being over in six categories, I still manage to come under my budget allotment for 2012.
I did buy new Camera and had interstate holiday that has been included in the above totals.

This does give me the idea that I am subconsciously set myself amount to spend then holding back on some things if I think that I have to cut on my spending because I spend a lot one area that was needed like the medical.

One thing this summery proves that averaging out over whole year is better than worry if you go over month as you can try to cut on other months.

Ok this Daily Living Allowance is the area that I will be working on to stretch and find any extra money I can. I also am looking at cutting back other on bills where I can. We will have a very large hike in household insurances this coming year as I havenít received the bill, I donít know how much it will be as yet!

I know that my medical out of pocket costs will much higher for 2013 so some this need to be add to bills section as I already am over by $1000 and the first month isnít over yet! I will set aside $3500 for this one next year. This is for just out of pocket costs.

I know that my medical out of pocket costs will much higher for 2013 so I need to up my bill budget by known cost. Dentist, 2 specialists with op so will add these bills there. So I will just track medicine and vitamins, glasses and diabetic section in this section of Daily Living Allowance. Allowing around $1250 for these items in next year tallies.

No Spending Days 154 of 365 days

Strategy - Review your bills every six months that you are still saving money with your changes that you made since renewed or changed bill companies. Change your habits if you canít change the company.

Strategy for my annual pair of glasses

December 19th, 2012 at 01:36 pm

I have order them and paid for them then will pick them up in the New Year.

As I may have to get a new pair when I see the Eye Specialist next year!

I always allow 11 months for emergency replacement glasses then get replacement pair that I fancy having in last month each year. You can only do this with Health cover that has one new pair each year and you can afford the difference. This year cost was $179 glasses and will out of pocket cost just $44 as these will be basic ones around the house pair.

Review of my spending plan for Bills!

December 14th, 2012 at 01:51 am

I wrote about this in this blog http://tightwadkitty.savingadvice.com/2012/09/01/starting-ov...

Hereís a list of some things that was planned and how I went so far four months in.

Trips - Sydney wedding and visit to my sister later next year but fare need to be paid in this period. (both are interstate.) Estimate $2000
Still waiting to book air fares for June visit to my sister so only air fares will come in this six spending plan not the holiday expenses. Sydney trip cost was $920

Out of pocket dental that canít be put off. Estimate $2000
Dental - I paid the first out of pocket bill today - $1375and second bill should be $540 = $1915

Car service that is well overdue so approx. $500
Paid $189 for car service card but still need pay for parts for major service? I will have this done mid- January.

Rates and water bills, power, medical fund annual fee, phone & internet fees, car rego. Approx. $5500
So far I paid medical fund annual fee $2320, first rates and water bills $456 car rego $515, first power $53 = $3344 with and will have extra Chiro Bill coming of $560 in February that not on this list. Another rates and water bills $456 and power $65 to come yet! = $521
Phone and internet will be around $500 for 6 months. I have reduced this cost by $30 per month.

House & Car Insurance due (these are the ones that I am worried about) Estimate $2700 but could be more.

Planned expenses for next six month estimated about $12,700
Age Pension over this time frame under $10,000

So living expenses will be almost nil for next few months, itís lucky that I do have savings to fall back on if I need too! I will try not to spend too much of it though.

By estimates I am within reach of the target but still living off my savings for Living day to day expenses. So far I have shaved off $2070 off the original total with around $650 will need to come out savings also!

I will have a few months to recoup this money before the next around of large bills. I am still a little worried about that House insurance bill coming in February or early March as some households have gone through the roof by thousands.

Strategy - Review your bills every six months that you are still saving money with your changes that you made since renewed or changed bill companies. Change your habits if you canít change the company.

New Glasses and Christmas Shopping

December 5th, 2012 at 02:35 am

I had a spending spree of sorts today I had to order some new glasses at certain shopping centre as my optical store closed down and the staff move elsewhere. I paid for them via cash and medical benefit refund they cost $179, I will pick them up in the New Year as I am in no hurry for them. I get a new pair each year so I have enough pairs around the house. I handed in 5 old pairs of glasses so they can be recycled for those who canít afford them in poorer counties. Itís a system that optical store do here.

While I was out I posted a Christmas parcel then did my grocery shopping for the things that were on special that I wanted for December. After having Subway sub and coffee I went to find some Christmas ideas and presents for last few on my list. I got a comfort and toiletries gift for one person which I thought I was paying full price for but it was on special as was the other gift that I bought for the other person which was grocery hamper and both of them had 20% off, I was happy about that!

Also I bought tins of biscuits and candy for other gifts as shocking fillers or extra gifts.

I had a very long walk today so my exercise of walking took hours today. Medical research is now telling us Ďwe are sitting too long now these days and this not good for our healthí. Well I walked and stood for over 5 hours around this shopping centre today. I struck at it until I got all on my list finished so I wouldnít have to go again to the shops as the school children finish up this Friday for their annual summer holidays. No parking or very little park in shopping centres after this date or at least none in the shade at 39 degrees C. I was very tried by the time I got back to car to drive home.

I will only shop locally from now on until they go back to school.

Update on My Monthly Financial Summery for Period 11 - 2012

October 30th, 2012 at 02:12 pm

Itís time that I posted, before I do the next monthís Financial Summery.

I have updated my Excel so here are the figures for past month not posted so far.

This for period of 28 days each as I looks like I missed one somewhere. As I work on 28 day cycles, my dates may be out to calendar months so here are the figures that will bring it up to date as its every near the end of next 28 day cycle.

Reviewing my monthly daily living allowance

These are the categories for this challenge.
Items === Approx. Budget===Spent

Eating out===$35=====$20.95
Groceries===$125=== =$111.83
Clothes ====$35
HH items===$40=====$44.00
Fares== ====$15 ====$10.00
Entrainments== $15
Garden =====$15
Gifts & Donations ==$35===$5.75
Medical & Diabetes Expenses ===$14.05
Misc ======$10==========$2.50
Personal Allowance =$90 ===$121.87

Note only one amount is a no spend

Budgeted for this period $550 spent $329.95 so under budget by $220.05

No spending days 15 of 28 days

Personal allowance covers confectionery, lotto, books, stamps, craft & hobby supplies.

Eating out including meals out with family and friends, we all go Dutch.

As for Medical & Diabetes Expenses - this is the extra out of pockets amounts that came up over this period just on medicine that is not covered be refund claims.

My credit cards are still paid in full each month it was $90.00.

I do keep my bill money separated from this summery. This year I will be budgeting around $650 per period month to cover all my bills and bills for this period it came to $136.69

My grocery bill came in under budget for this period.
If any changes to my spending habits will need to come out of my daily living allowance categories of my budget as my bill categories are very tight now. I was very tight in some areas of this daily living allowance over this period but I did work out in the end.

Still need to work on a Grocery category and personal allowance as I got to stop spending money on books, I think this is my biggest downfall most of my personal spending is spent on books.

I am still donating some old books to a number of charity stops around the place that I will never read or never read again as I need the plastic containers that they are stored in as this will save money by recycling the plastic containers that I own.

Strategy - Do remember what you have stored before you go and buy more of the same.

Strategy: - Track your daily spending down to the cent by writing it down daily.

Had to get an electrician in!

October 10th, 2012 at 01:44 am

Last time I used my washing machine the power point wouldnít work as it stopped in the middle of a cycle. As my washing machine is 1985 vintage I thought that I would need a new one, I do have that money invested so was just about to start looking for new one! Then I decided that I should put the washing machine on power lead to another power point to check if it was still working and it was. So no need for a new one just yet!

I phone my Home Assist Service for pensioners which will pay part of the bill for you thatĎs $88 off bill. Today he came to check my power points in the laundry and fix a light there too! I had the light fittings so only needed to pay for the new power points he had replaced two, I donít like iffy things if thereís a problem its gets fixed with too many house fires with faulty electrical around the place. The total cost of out of pocket expensive was only $36.50.

He also set my mind a rest on the power spikes that I get from time to time. Itís my solar hot water power unit starting up it only goes for a few minutes and not all day at 3500 kWh I will have to learn to live with that.

Strategy - If it can be fixed then repair it, but use the less than half rule on replacement costs rule.

Austerity and WW2 recipes

September 14th, 2012 at 01:50 am

I have been looking at World War 2 recipes and any recipes before this period. Most of them are British ones as I can find of lot online and have bought a number of books from this period. This is a passion of mine as I do look to this period for ideas when trying to cut back at any time.

With the economical way the world is going right now, and all the Austerity Budgets from governments, we will have to start looking for ideas to cope in our own parts of the world.

A lot of households here are cutting back and trying to save or pay down debt. This is not helping some sectors of the economy as we all have since WW2 been told or suggested to spend up big by auto-suggestion so businesses can have a larger profits for shareholders and saving were a thing of the past and loans are in.

Now the crunch time is upon us to pay our dues for this false strategy. The thing is can we hold on to what we have and own now! No one wants to go back to what it was before but we should start making plans to get our own household in order. Australia is a lucky country but we too will fine things tough if things go bad this time. By how much no one knows. But look at it in way that if doesnít happen to be that bad then we are better off than we were before. Some jobs are going here now by the thousands so things are charging here too! Like our State government retrenching over 11000 workers across the board and not replacing any vacant jobs (4500), this is just one state. The flow on effect will be great as business and jobs near these workplaces will then be affected too!

Greece, Italy and Spain are in a bad way as are many more countries that I have havenít kept up to date with.

"Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without." - Boyd K. Packer