November Budget Review & December Budget Preview

November Budget Review & December Budget Preview

Another month has finished, so it is time for yet another budget review and preview post.  We are starting the last month of 2015, so this will be my last post like this for the year.  That means that I’ve met my goal of budgeting every month for the entire year! Woohoo!  🙂

Before I get started on reviewing November, I wanted to revisit October quickly… I made mention in my review of our October spending that I had business expenses that would be reimbursed and I wasn’t sure how I was going to deal with them in YNAB.  I ended up splitting the reimbursement payment in to two so that the expenses in October were covered by part of the payment, and the ones I paid for in November were covered by the other part of it.  It makes it not 100% match my bank statements, but it makes the summary numbers for the month make more sense.  I’m not going to update that post, but our spending for the month of October looks much nicer now and is under $8000, and it also makes it so our “overspending” in October went down so it now looks like we didn’t budget everything in November…

Oct&Nov Business Expenses

Okay, so now for the spending numbers for November…

November 2015 Spending

I am happy to report that our total spending is down for the month of November.  In fact, it appears to be the lowest month of spending since we have started keeping track in YNAB.  But honestly, I think it is mostly because we didn’t have any planned spending or big purchases this month, not because we were good at keeping the regular expenses down… But that being said, I’m still happy with it.

The top two categories of spending are as they normally are, the mortgage and our food & drink.  I like that the next category isn’t really a spending category, but the money that we are moving to our RRSPs.  That doesn’t really count as spending… right?

So now let’s look at the numbers:

Nov 2015 Review & Dec 2015 Budget

1. Mortgage:  Same as usual… nothing to report…

2. Utilities & Home Insurance: Out utilities have gone up a bit with the winter weather starting and having to actually use some heat.  But that was expected.  And we are still saving up to pay our annual home insurance in February.

3. RRSP & TFSA: Another boring category… nothing to report…

4. Planned Spending / Saving:  What is this?  Positive spending?  We received a couple late wedding gifts towards our honeymoon fund, but then also spent some money on some school materials for my husband… but the gifts were more than what we spent… so the category ended up with a positive value…

5. Life Insurance, Medical & Family Expenses:  I had originally budgeted $XXX** for this category, but my husband (who has gotten in to the YNAB thing quite a bit this month – yay!) decided that we should take some from money from our liquor budget and put it towards a new cat tower (in family/pet expenses) to replace the one that is falling apart… Didn’t totally work out because our food & drink spending was pretty tight for this month… but I’m happy that he is interested and is playing around with the budget numbers.  For December, I know I have a dentist visit scheduled, so I’ve made sure to put in some money for that, along with the regular contributions to the “rainy day funds.”

6. Cable, Cell Phones & Internet:  An expensive month for this category.  The way the dates worked out, my husband paid for two months’ of his cell phone service, so that made the amount seem bigger than normal…

7. Car Insurance, Maintenance & Gas:  We had an expensive gas month this month… Hopefully we can both bike to work a bit more this month (if the weather cooperates) and not use quite as much in December… We still haven’t fixed the dent in my husband’s car… hopefully I get my act together and get it done soon…

8. Groceries, Eating Out & Liquor:  With my husband’s decision to take $XXX** from this category and move it to the family/pet category, this one ended up getting tight over the weekend.  We tried to eat whatever we could scrounge from the cupboards and freezer, but ended up going a little bit over…

9. Household Goods & Toiletries: Just our regular cleaning expenses and a couple of items for fall yard work.  Nothing exciting…

10. Fitness & Sports: We got some repairs done on my husband’s bike.  One of my husband’s friends does bike stuff, so we took it to him.  I still haven’t paid for one of my sports teams, so I have the cheque written and it will get cashed in December, so I’ve already entered it in to YNAB.

11. Clothing & Personal Care:  I already mentioned that my husband bought jeans… And I went for a hair appointment.  I still want to buy some clothing for myself, but I seem to be making do with what I have… so it is hard for me to justify the expense or be motivated to actually go shopping… eventually it’ll happen that everything falls apart at the same time… it’s Murphy’s law, right?

12. Misc.:  I have given my husband and I each a “fun money” fund in the miscellaneous category, and this month my husband used his up for some hockey gear.  I also bought a couple gifts and put some money in to the piggy bank at the baby shower I planned, so that all came from the gift fund.  For December, I have added more to the gifts fund and more to the charity fund.  Hopefully I have budgeted well for this traditionally expensive time of year…

How does your December budget look?  Have you planned enough for all the Christmas related expenses?

**Edit:  I have decided that I don’t want to share my actual numbers on the blog, so I have removed them from this post… Sorry if it makes it a bit confusing or unreadable… Hopefully it isn’t unbearably so.

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5 thoughts on “November Budget Review & December Budget Preview

  1. I’m glad you had a great budgetting month for November! It’s always exciting to see yourself making progress when you start cutting back. Our December expenses are probably going to be higher than I would like. I only have one more Christmas gift to purchase (it will be less than $50), but we’re going to have some travel expenses from a week in Missouri after Christmas. I’ll be doing November actuals and December projection on my blog later this week, if you want to check it out!

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    • I’m not so sure we are making progress, or if we just lucked out… but feels good all the same. Only one more gift to buy?!? That’s impressive. December is always an expensive month… Holiday food treats, gifts and travel all add up quickly. I’ll head over to your blog now to check out your budget review!

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  2. My wife and I have an annual “Sunshine Fund” – which is our fun money budget category. We set an amount at the start of the year, rather than portion it out a month at a time. The key goal is equity between our fun money spending. If one of us doesn’t spend the full amount, you can carry it over to the next year. It works for us when someone says “you’re going to buy THAT? We don’t need it!” Then the other person can say, “I really want it and it will come out of my Sunshine Fund.” That keeps the petty money talk to a minimum. I’m less of a spender than my wife and have saved up a lot. This year, I am setting up a new home office (for retirement) and having fun spending my $$$.

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