Monday, 6 December 2010

£1,200 a month

£1,200 per month is our new budget.

Breakdown as follows:-

Fixed outgoings:-

Rent £470
Council Tax £115.00
Water £53.00
Electricity, say £70.00
Gas, say £70.00
Car insurance £16.00
Internet £15.00
Total £809.00

This leaves £391.00 for everything such as food, petrol and other.

This is a tight budget, but it does work. I have had to estimate the gas and electricity because we have not received bills yet. I may have to adjust the budget for higher bills this winter. DH and I don't need much and we don't buy much apart from food, we are very frugal. In general I dislike eating out, I find restaurants over priced and the portions are too small. I am also at the age where I now see the futility of sitting in pubs and bars spending money on booze. Now sometimes DH and I do enjoy a pint and a burger at Weatherspoons for £6.00 each, particularly on a Monday :) I am not into clothes or shoes and I HATE shopping! Not a typical woman eh? I have had plenty of practice on living on a restricted budget as I have been saving for The Escape for several years.

Obviously if we want to go abroad on holiday or to travel then the budget needs adjusting. But to be honest I wonder lately if travel is all its cracked up to be and whether in fact travel has become the new form of consumerism?

We do plan to get some part time work to bring in a little extra income. But we value our freedom over money. I would rather figure out a way of spending less.

How does this compare to your outgoings every month?


slbma said...

Yup, when we were renting I think our budget was 1,100. Now it's a little less as obviously rental has gone, but we do still pay mooring fees and other bits and bobs. I would say 1,000 is a good and fairly generous budget for us - and we are a family. Although, like you, I'm not a massive shopper or anything like that ;-) As for travel, I think many do not travel for travel's sake... I think many travel because a) they need a holiday in the sun or b) think it's the done thing. Shame really because I love travel... new sites, smells, people - I have learnt so much about myself through travelling. But at the end of the day it is simply important for you to be happy with where you are at and what you are doing, and it's sounding as if you are! bravo :-)

Tony said...

Around £1,000 seems to be a magic threshold. I've found you can live pretty much anywhere on that kind of budget. Obviously you can live in a lot more style for £1,000 a month in some countries.

Is travel the new consumerism? I see your point, and I think for some kinds of travel it is. There's a big difference between an overpriced package holiday, and traveling to and living in a foreign country that provides a better quality of life, and a cheaper cost of living too. Learning the language, culture, and food of another country is one of life's greatest experiences in my opinion. I've been able to enjoy truly wonderful times in countries like Madeira, Thailand and Malaysia that I just simply could not have had in the UK, no matter how much money I had. I consider those experiences to be priceless, and something I've never regretted. At the same time travel/living abroad/location independent lifestyle isn't for everyone. Find the lifestyle you love, and pursue that. If it works for you, whatever it is, keep doing it!

Anna said...

Agreed, Tony.

Frank C. said...

If you buy a place to live make sure it's a small place just for two people that will save lots of money. Maybe a good size electric space heater will save you money on gas, what ever works best.

Rent may also be cheaper compaired to buying a house or condo just do the math, you already sold your other place why buy again if it's going to cost too much.

Don't go back to work cause it's hell, do you really want to go back to the rat race. I'm sure there's ways to cut back on cost.

I shop for food at Save-A-Lot Food Store and save 40% more on food cost. It really saves me lots of money by the end of the month and better for your health than fast food places. I hope the U.K. has thrift stores for food but the bad part is that you'll have to cook.

I'm glad i don't have kids they eat like cows plus a car and college my retirement at 40 would'nt be possible. They say one child only is like a $100,000 cost, YIKES !, hang me by a rope.

Remember your ship has come in, so enjoy it and don't make any gambles that will sink your ship.

Bye, your new husband Frank C., just joking i know you love your DH, have fun your fan Frank.

Dreamer said...

Frank, you make me laugh, kids eat like cows, I am sure its very true :) Well DH eats enough for 2 so really I have to cook for 3! I keep thinking I want a part time job, but there really isnt anything much around which is truly part time, by part time I mean get in and get out for say 2 days a week, but everything "part time" seems to be 20 hours spread over say 4/5 days a week! Thats not what I call part time and not what I want.

Salis Grano said...

>This leaves £391.00 for everything such as food, petrol and other.

It's the "other" that can cause problems, I find. If you have a credit card, put everything you can onto it so that you can track down the otherness via the bills.

Your overall budget looks reasonable to me and your energy estimates seem, at the moment, fairly generous.

Dreamer said...

Hi Salis and thanks, if I have overestimated the utilities then that would be fantastic.

Great idea about putting "other" expenditure on a credit card to track the same.

Quest said...

Hi Dreamer .... Best wishes to you for 2011. This is RMoM (fellow brit, living in Los Angeles, remember me?) I had to delete yet another blog (Reformed manager of money) because, once again, a family member discovered it and was e-spying on me. Well, the blog wasn't there for their benefit but for mine!! So I've started up yet again here:
with hopefully more security controls so that I can remain anonymous while spouting off about my dad, which I frequently do because his influence has so much to do with my behaviors. I tried therapy for a couple of months right after we commented about it online but the problem with the therapist was that she couldn't relate to some of the more 'british' things about me lol Anyway, I thought I'd check in and see how you're doing in your escape. Is it everything you'd hoped for? I hope so :) It has to be much more preferable than reporting to a job you're not happy in.

Dreamer said...

Hi Quest and HNY to you too, lovely to see you around here again I had wondered what had happened to you!

Well re the therapy I think if you are not feeling a connection with the therapist then try someone else, but stick with it once you find the right person because it DOES give you useful coping tools even if it is uncomfotable at the time and dont rush it because it does take a while. I cant explain how it works but it does work but yes it is also painful.

Re the escape well it is wonderful to be free of the grind, but I still havent worked everything out and I am still unsure where we are meant to be long term and doing what but I am taking this time to try to chill about the bigger issues. Coming over to take a look at your new blog now:)

Anonymous said...

the money next yur door

Keith said...

I do appreciate your commitment to a more slow paced life style. I did this about 15 years ago and yes there was much sacrifice from the financial end, it was well worth the journey.

ermine said...

I am amazed that you are running £53 a month on water - I've just paid last quarter's bill for £61. Electricity is < £300 a year and gas is about £500pa (I do have a wood-burning stove which may reduce that, as I don't pay for wood).

There may be an opportunity to grind some of these running costs down a tad...