Expense Review – May 2021

My My how time flies…….. May has been an uneventful month for us. We finally booked the flights for our family holiday this year (fingers crossed the borders stay open). We also plodded along with our renovations, which continue to take a large amount of our money (and our time). To view all previous expense review tagged posts click here.

Top 5 Expenses

These charts are from my Income and Expense Tracker click on the image for the link.

There have been some changes to the Top 5 Categories from this month to last month.

Our Top 5 Expenses were are no real surprise for us, and are made up of the following items.

  1. Renovations (Increased $2,862.62 from last month) = $4,816.25

Notes: This month we completed our the tiling of our downstairs area, and we think it looks amazing. In addition to the tiling costs, we had to redo all the skirting boards, doors, touch up the paint and refurnish all of the downstairs. We are turning our downstairs into a self contained AirBnB so hopefully we can start recoup some of this back in income (which we will document in our monthly side hustle income posts link here). We are aiming to have the renovations finished by the end of Spring 2021, but we are struggling to find bathroom contractors so this date may change. So unless we manage to lock down a contractor soon I expect June to be a lot cheaper than May.

  1. Holidays (Increased $1,412.34 from last month) = $1987.75

Notes: We finally booked our fully flexible refundable flights to the Gold Coast. It’s funny pre Covid I would never have purchased fully flexible flights due to the cost, but these days its just part of the process. Until we fly in July I’ll be crossing my fingers and toes that we remain Covid-19 free, and the borders remain open. This category should reduce in June and then go up again in July once we have to start paying for accommodation / park tickets / car hire and miscellaneous costs.

  1. Food and Alcohol (Increased by $457.39 this month compared to last month) = $1006.84

Notes: I’ll be honest I was a little surprised by this as I expected this to be a lot less. In May we gave up alcohol for the month, and so I was hoping to see a little bit in the way of savings from this (sadly not). On the plus side our town got a new Aldi which means that we will save about 45 minutes (and petrol) each week as we don’t need to commute to the next town over anymore.

I analysed the increased costs a little on this category and it seems it was the mid week shops for things we forgot that seemed to do most of the damage. To try and get our spending back on track in June we are going to try and better estimate our food needs to avoid those expensive mid week shops.

  1. Mortgage (Decreased $249.00 this month) = $994.40

Notes: May was a normal month for our mortgage, and this amount was just our regular minimum repayments. We have opted not to pay extra to our mortgage at this stage, and focus on investing and renovations (personal preference). Mortgage is variable, and payments depend on the number of weeks in each month. May was a four week payment month for us.

  1. Utilities (Decreased $127.72 this month) = $772.24

Notes: May was a good month for utilities with no real surprises to share. This category includes our Electricity, Gas, Water, Rates, Internet and Phones. We review these expenses yearly (or more often if we see a better deal). If you want to save money on your electricity feel free to read up on our tips here in our article – 5 simple ways to save money on your electricity bills.

Year to Date Comparison

These charts are from my Income and Expense Tracker click on the image for the link.

With the renovation and holiday expenses our expenses completely blew out in May. We spent $12,204.15 in May which is an increase of $3,698.16 on last month (and about 5k more than our normal expected spend). This month we spent $393.68 per day which is over $100 more per day than April and $200 per day more than March (ouch…..).

Other Expense Commentary

These charts are from my Income and Expense Tracker click on the image for the link.

Restaurants, Eating Out and Activities

May was a another great month for staying in, and as a result this category was in line with our goal for this category. That said we still enjoyed ourselves:

  • I went out for drinks with co-workers
  • Had dinner and dessert with one of my closest friends
  • We did a Tree Climbing activity as a family (which was the highlight of the month)

The total for the month on this category was $243.26 compared with $193.65 last month.

New Expenses (This Year)

No new expense categories were added this month.

Changes we’ve made this month (May)

Nil significant changes made in May to our spending except for the increases in holiday and renovation expenses that seems a little never ending at the moment.

Changes to expect next month (June)

Next month we expect the following changes.

I’m hopeful my wage reconsideration request will be approved in June, which will result in approximately $1000 in back pay. We also have my youngest son’s birthday in late June so there will be an increase in expenses in the present category. We are not having a party and instead we are doing something small as a family. I’m hoping to keep expenses under $200 (we’ll see).

Notes: I track my Income and Expenses via my tracker available on my Etsy Store Link Here .

Income and Expense Tracker with Automated Dashboard Single | Etsy

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Expense Review – April 2021

Goodbye April and Hello May. April has been a crazy month with renovations, Easter and our annual camping trip. There are a few changes to our ‘Top 5 Expenses’, but no real surprises. To view all previous expense review tagged posts click here.

Top 5 Expenses

These charts are from my Income and Expense Tracker click on the image for the link.

There have been some changes to the Top 5 Categories from this month to last month.

Our Top 5 Expenses were are no real surprise for us, and are made up of the following items.

  1. Renovations (Increased $1953.63 from last month) = $1953.63

Notes: As mentioned last month we have recommenced major renovations to our home. We took a short break from renovations in 2020 to build our investment account to 100k (if you would like to read more about that use the link here). Now that we have hit our 100k investment goal we have stepped off the gas a little, and we are spending any spare cash over our weekly regular investment amount on renovations. This month we spent money on new tiles and dumping costs associated with removing the old carpet and floor boards. We purchased our tiles online from National Tiles, and have been really happy with the pricing, free delivery, and the refund policy.

  1. School Expenses, Extra Curricular and Pocket Money (Increased $537 this month) = $774.00

Notes: Last month this item was our number three top expense, and thanks to a very expensive camp we had to pay for in April it’s moved to second place. Our boys both participate in Scouts and its been really rewarding for the boys, but it hasn’t been a very budget conscious decision. That said I have zero regrets about my boys participating, and thankfully we have the ability to support them in what they love doing. I’m hopeful next month will be a little less expensive. Both boys go to public school and we pay our fees fortnightly until they are paid off completely (there is no benefit to us paying in a lump sum). We pay our eldest son pocket money ($1 for how many years old he is). Our youngest doesn’t get pocket money until he is at High School.

  1. Mortgage (Increased $248.60 this month) = $1243.00

Notes: Thanks to an expensive month for renovations and kids expenses our mortgage dropped from its number one spot to number three this month. Mortgage is variable, and payments depend on the number of weeks in each month. April was a five week payment month for us hence the additional cost.

  1. Utilities (Increased $139.35 this month) = $899.96

Notes: Another expensive month for utilities thanks to our water bill being slightly more than budgeted for thanks to our summer usage (we own a swimming pool, and have a large garden with automated watering). Despite the increase I was still happy with this bill as it was less than this time last year (woohoo). This category includes our Electricity, Gas, Water, Rates, Internet and Phones. We review these expenses yearly (or more often if we see a better deal). If you want to save money on your electricity feel free to read up on our tips here in our article – 5 simple ways to save money on your electricity bills.

  1. Health and Medical Items (Increased by $78.02 this month compared to last month) = $656.62

Notes: Increased this month as April was a three fortnight month for our health insurance. Our health insurance also went up in price at the start of April which did sting a little. That said we make use of our insurance and it pays out over 10k a year for us thanks to my husbands condition, dental items, and my optometry. This amount includes all medicine, pharmacy items, private health insurance, doctors/specialists visits, and any pathology/radiology.

Year to Date Comparison

These charts are from my Income and Expense Tracker click on the image for the link.

With the additional renovation and school expenses we are trending upwards this month. We spent $8505.99 in April which is an increase of $2666.61. This month we spent $283.53 per day which is almost $100 more per day than March (ouch…..).

Other Expense Commentary

These charts are from my Income and Expense Tracker click on the image for the link.

Food and Alcohol

April was an awesome month for our food bill thanks to doing a pantry challenge, and a freezer of free meats thanks to my mother in law. We spent $549.45 which averages out to $18.32 per day. It was so low that it dropped out of our top 5 expenses this month, however I’m sure it will return in May.

Restaurants, Eating Out and Activities

April was a great month for staying in, and as a result this category was less than usual. The total for the month was $193.65 compared with $387.22 last month.

Holiday’s

In April we went on our annual camping trip with our good friends. It was so nice to get away and go interstate for the first time in 18 months. In total we spent $575.41 and this included petrol, food we purchased whilst away, a hat my son forgot, and a trip to an expensive winery (We previously paid for the campsite in February at a cost of $222. So the holiday was very budget friendly).

New Expenses (This Year)

We had 1 new expense categories added in April:

  • Renovations = Our Biggest Expense in April.

Changes we’ve made this month

My work location has changed and I’m now taking public transport every day. This means that I’m saving money on petrol costs, and my husband has switched to taking my car to work (again to save more petrol). I’m hopeful we may see some changes to this next month.

Changes to expect next month

Next month we expect the following changes.

Renovations: We expect our renovation expenses to increase in April, and this will continue as we finish off the renovations downstairs. The benefit of renovating is that hopefully in Spring we will be able to list our downstairs area on AirBnB (and use this to offset some of the renovating costs for upstairs which still need to be done).

Notes: I track my Income and Expenses via my tracker available on my Etsy Store Link Here . My Income and Expense Tracker has recently been modified so if you have previously purchased it and would like the new version get in touch and I will send it to you free of charge with proof of purchase.

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