Well, we did it. And it wasn’t half bad. Learnt a whole heap of things and saved more than we have in a long time. I know you must be dying (probably an exaggeration) to know how it went so here you go.
We saved 25% of our total income. Hurrah! That means that not only have we ended the month in the black, but we have paid in to our savings account for the first time in ages. Great!
Now if you remember, I said we were aiming for as close to 50% saved as we could get. Obviously there is room for improvement here, but we are okay with that. There are a couple of very obvious places where we spent money that was unforeseen and, at the time, necessary. Additionally there was the purchasing of a domain name where somebody didn’t read the Ts&Cs closely enough……….
Yeah didn’t think that one through.
Anyway, moving swiftly on. We also went on holiday at the end of August. Anyone could guess that’s not the best thing to do in a designated Austerity Month. Ordinarily this would have been fine but it was a week in a self catered cottage and Mr. B. has a massive (…..) family. There were 17 of us and we had to supply an evening meal on the day we arrived. Obviously this had an impact on the food shop. We managed to do a pretty decent job of it, while keeping AM (bored of typing it out..) in mind. There was food. 17 people ate it. 17 people are still around today….success! I won’t bore you with what was on the menu, but let’s just say it included homemade meringues and homemade blackberry (naturally) coulis, using self-picked (is that a thing??) blackberries. Very yummy and inexpensive.
All in all I don’t think we did too badly on our first Austerity Month. First? Are you going to put yourselves through it all again? (awkward pause…) Errr, yes. Actually we have decided to keep this up. It has worked so well this last month, and we can clearly see the improvements we could make, that we are going to alternate AMs with ‘normal’ months. This won’t mean that every other month we can splurge our cash, quite the contrary. We are going to operate on a ‘budget’ of £0* each and every month from now on, but in AMs we shall make a concerted effort to save a certain % of that month’s salary. Non AMs will also involve saving but in a less targeted way. Clear as mud? Well, we’ll see how it goes.
Things are looking up….We have taken the first very small (very, very, very minuscule) step towards our dream. And it feels good to have made a tiny (very, very…alright we get it…) contribution. Long term goals are hard.
*I know, I know, this doesn’t make any sense. Essentially, we are not going to spend money unless we have to. Every pound spent above £0 takes us further away from our goal. I couldn’t think of another word other than budget though.
Anybody care to share their tips on how to save money? We need all the help we can get!