Thursday, December 29, 2011

Budget-Year in Review and Goals

I have had a goal all year of keeping our grocery budget $800 or less, in addition in the last several months I have add to that of getting our "baby" Emergency Fund" at $500. At the beginning of the year last year, I had in mind that we would be out of debt except for our mortgage by this point. I will say up front that I did not met these goals completely but I feel like I have made substantial progress. I want to take an good look at the goals from last year as well as establish new one in the area of finance for next year. Look for the final year in review post on Saturday.

Grocery budget-Goal was $800 or less a month. Our average spending per month was $821! Matt and I both have decided that was a success. I am not going to increase this budget at all for 2012. When I look at the numbers that is $26 a week per person, or around $1.10 per person per meal. Of course I will be so happy to come in under this number but I also want to be realistic.

Emergency Fund- We actually met this goal approximately 2 weeks ago, followed by us having to spend $450 of it on a new dryer when ours stopped working. I have found that the best way for us to accomplish this goal is to move $10 a check to the account and then if we "find" more money push it in the account as well. Our goal for 2012 will be to re-establish this fund and increase it to $1000 by June and maintain it at this amount for the rest of the year.

Outstanding debt- This is the area in which we have made the least amount of progress. In one sense, we have been really great, we have not acquired any new debt this year. This includes unpaid medical bills. My goal was to be complete out of debt so this is a failure. My goal will be the same for 2012. The importance of this goal is more pressing as our income will be reduced in June of 2012.

Where did our money go in 2011:
Disney Trip
Vacation at the Beach for a week
New windows for the entire house.
2 New Televisions for our bedroom
Car and Van maintenance.
Taxes paid for 2010 and 2011

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