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January 2nd, 2008 at 09:37 am

This is going to be our version of the $20 Challenge.

Our challenge for 2008 is to keep these items in the list under $20K for 2008. As can be seen, we spent over $23K+ on these items in 2007. Conservatively, we probably should budget $22K for these stuff but this is not called a challenge for nothing! I love a challenge, and so we are turning the knob a little bit tighter. I think if we can reduce the grocery, entertainment, gifts and miscellaneous items we should be able to do it. I do anticipate that the entertainment and gifts will be a lot lower this year (won’t be spending as much this year for our anniversary).
I’m already accounting for an increase in the utility bills (there has been a lot of talk in the media about this already). Property rate has already increase for the last 6 months and will continue for the next 6 months and will most likely increase further after that. Have increase the home phone but will try to not use the mobile phone as much. Our internet usage can be erratic, to be in the safe side I have increase it. Fuel should be lower this year since our gas conversion. Fare will be increasing in the middle of the year as per usual. For insurances, I just hope they won’t go up too much but we are already planning to increase our coverage for the health insurance (to include maternity) around the middle of the year. The amount for the Personal/Medical will not include the surgery that was meant for Dec in here (in my 2008 year budget I have put this as a separate item). I have lowered this quiet a bit, there were stuff that we did last year that we shouldn’t need this year, eg. I won’t need contact lenses I got enough that should last for over a year. The miscellaneous item is really the thing that I hope we can really keep down. Need to be more discipline about not buying useless stuff.
I would really like to save $3K for these items this year. That $3K would really be great contribution to the holiday fund (as a reward).
Things that are not in the ($20K challenge) list but are in the 2008 spending plan are:
Mortgage -$16,200
CC repayments – Will be paying minimum and will reassess at the end of the year on whether we want to just pay it off or not - $1,600
Medical (surgery) Expense - ~$1000
Tuitions – Depends on how many subject will be doing this year, still undecided (kind of playing it by ear on how busy it is at work) - $3,100 maybe
Text Books – Depends on above decision - $420 maybe
Various Funds:
Baby Fund - $50p/m ($600)
Car Fund - $150 p/m ($1,800)
EF - $50 p/m + some from extra income (until fully funded - $3000, only need $1K now) ($600)
Xmas Fund - $70 p/m ($840)
Repair/Furniture Fund - $500 p/m (planning to make some major repairs this year) ($6000)
Holiday Fund - $350 p/m (but if we can achieve our $20K challenge we won’t need to put away as much and will put more in the savings) ($4,200)
Various Retirement and Investments - $330 p/m ($4,000)

LONG TERM SAVINGS - $500 p/m + whatever extra left in the month’s income ($6,000).

I am really excited about 2008 it’s going to be a great year.

DH's Christmas Bonus

December 10th, 2007 at 12:20 pm

He will be getting some company shares, worth around $700+. That pushes us over the $5,000 mark, which means Goal #9 is now done.

More Goals

January 1st, 2007 at 01:32 am

Thanks everyone for your warm welcome and encouragement!

I decided to list more minor goals, these minor goals will help me achieve my big goals for 2007.

1. I will not buy any clothes in the next 6 months except for 2 winter coats and underwear. Clothing budget for the next 6 months is only $150.

2. Cut down on the groceries. I will try to only spend $50 this week, and try to use up what's in the pantry and fridge already.

3. Only spend $50 on entertainment this month.

4. Look into lowering the house insurance premium.

That's it for now.

By writing these down, I will be able to see whether I'm making progress. This is a good habit for me to get into.

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