Sunday, January 08, 2012
This is what we came up with after tracking expenses for a year.
1. We do not have a mortgage. That was a plan we made when my husband turned 40.
By his 50th birthday we were mortgage free.
We do have taxes and insurance.
Kansas does not lower taxes on property when you turn 60.
We have a house tax and insurance bill that is, currently, 15% of our income.
If you add taxes and insurance for our cars and boat it goes up to 22%.
Those bills come twice a year.
In order to be ready, we save 22% off the top of every income check.
It goes into a "touch it and you might die" account at the bank.
2. Our food allowance is pretty substantial.
We choose to eat well. We don't eat LOADS, but we don't skimp.
Our food allowance for both eating in and out is about 18% of our income.
Food prices are soaring here. Our last bill was 10% more than normal.
We may have to start cutting fun foods out for a while until it stabilizes again
3. Utilities are becoming more and more unpredictable.
Cable, phone, internet and water are stable at 6%.
Electricity is very unstable at 8% right now---and ever growing.
If it grows much more- cable will disappear.
Netflix comes out of our allowances....which will be discussed later.
4. We travel ALOT.
We only travel on money we make outside of our normal income.
That will probably begin to change this year.
I am thinking 5% of our income will go to travel.
This does not include the gas for around here-
which is currently about 5% of our income.
5. House repairs, car upkeep and fixes are staying steady at 7% of income.
Including the tools to snow blow or cut grass.
There is another fund that has 5% of the income
for major !ow! expenses- like a roof or a stove.
We just bought a car.
I don't think we will need a new one
before my husband is on Social Security in 3-5 years.
6. Charity is about 5% right now.
I am looking at ways to tithe my time and talent so I can feel closer
to the amount that I feel we should be giving.
7. Poochies are about 3%. Darn, those vet bills certainly rack up!
8. Presents and family "things" are about 3%.
9. The last 13% has always been our allowance. The allowance is given every two weeks. I usually use mine for clothes, hair and travel. He uses his for wood and tools. Nexflix is evenly divided.
We are considering cutting back to 10% of our income for allowance so we can save 3%. My husband makes a good argument for not doing that since we have a good nest egg and have not touched it... That nest egg has only made about 50 cents in the last month....so we are not keeping up with inflation there. I don't see us using our nest egg for many, many years.
I still have my hair
although it often looks like Andy's these days!