September has been a whirlwind! We hosted friends for Labor Day weekend, went on an amazing trip to Iceland and finished off the month hiking and camping locally. We’re in the middle of a beautiful fall season in New England and leaves are just starting to change color. Work has been pretty even-keeled for both of us recently, which is much appreciated. September expenses were a bit non-standard given our 9-day international trip, yet somehow we ended up right on budget (well, $26 over… close enough!). Summary chart courtesy of Personal Capital’s Free Budget Tracking Tool.
September 2017 Spending Total: $5,781
|Mortgage||$1,885||Escrow went up. Meh.|
|Gas/Tolls||$170||Woohoo! This is very low for us.|
|Automotive||$617||My 2008 vehicle needed *another* repair. AGAIN.|
|Entertainment||$18||Hulu, NY Times|
|Vacation||$2,007||Highest spending category this month.|
September Spending Details:
Vacation: Let’s skip to the most exciting topic first! We went to Iceland in September and it was amazing – we loved the scenery, the hiking, the sheep, the geothermal springs, glaciers, waterfalls… For a detailed look at where our money went, check out our Iceland Expense Report. About $2,000 of our Iceland adventure hit our September budget, which is about what we expected. Remember, when we’re on vacation, all restaurant, gas and grocery expenditures go into the vacation category, not our normal day-to-day spending categories.
Mortgage: We were notified of an escrow shortage and they upped our monthly payment accordingly. Whomp whomp. Just another reminder the home ownership is more expensive than you may think! We pay extra principal each month and may pull that back to keep our monthly payment a little lower. More importantly, I like my mortgage payment to be a round number, lol.
Automotive: Hopefully my car is (finally) fixed now. $600 later and it’s a much smoother ride with new wheel bearings. On the bright side, my car passed its yearly inspection… I’m still struggling with what I want to do with my vehicle long-term. It’s 9-years old and I’m noticing several little things are starting to go, alongside the multi-hundred dollar major repairs. 2017 was a particularly expensive year. We’ve spent about $2k fixing my vehicle this year… BUT it’s a Subaru – aren’t those babies supposed to last 15+ years?!
Restaurants: We had plenty of eating out while in Iceland (lamb stew = delicious!), so September was another low month of restaurant expenditure while at home. The two meals consumed were actually Mr. Saverdink right after our Iceland vacation because we didn’t have food in the house for him to take for lunch at work.
Pet Care: We restocked on some cat supplies ($42), but also started up our fish tank again. Nothing too fancy, just some platies and neon tetras for now. We bought a fish feeder to keep the little guys fed while awhile for 10 days and restocked on some of the chemicals for the tank.
Only three months to go in 2017. How has your own budget been doing this year? Any big surprises? Our household spending for 2017 appears to be on track thus far. We pushed our $$$$ driveway repair to 2018 and will be budgeting for that outside of our standard monthly budget.