Wednesday, October 7, 2015

September Expenditures

I have decided that each month I will share an update of where our money went. So, here it is in all its glory - the first DisIndebted Monthly Expenditures!

Regular Debt Payments$2,520Fixed Payments$1,860
Snowball Debt Payments$3,400- Rent$789
- 0% Balance Transfer 1$1,000- Electric$112
- Private Student Loan$2,400- Other Utilities$180
Non-Budgeted Buys$332- Renter Insurance$22
- Boots$300- Auto Lease 1$265
- Box Fans$32- Auto Lease 2$235

- Savings Acct.$200
Discretionary$703- Gym Memberships$21
Grocery$335- Netflix$9
Dining Out$104- Rent Insurance$22
Entertainment$105- Pandora$5
Other$159- Tithing$0

As you can see, we spent a whopping 67% of our income on debt. What you can't see is that we reduced the principal of our debt from $350,415 to $345,755 - a total of $4,660 of debt vanquished!

We are serious about disindebtification.

Anyway, here is some info on each expense for your personal amusement:
  • Regular Debt Payments - Duh. We have debt. We have minimum payments to make on it each month. This is credit card and student loan debt (I don't count our auto leases or rent here). This is the ugly stuff we want to get rid of. 
  • Snowball Debt Payments - We pay a minimum of $1,000 a month extra toward the principal of our big ugly pile of debt. Currently that is slated to go toward one of two 0% transfer credit cards. Both are at 0% and the promotional rate expires in July 2016 - thus it is important to pay both off ASAP. However, we determined that we could apply some money to a very high (13%) personal education loan and still pay off the 0% transfers before they skyrocket to 20% or whatever unholy rate they go to next July. Last month we made $2,400 on eBay (This was actually $2,342, but I felt optimistic and rounded up). Thus, we paid an extra $2,400 toward that ugly private loan.
  • Non-Budgeted Buys - This is exactly what it sounds like. It is stuff we did not budget for, but spent on anyway.
    • Box Fans - I got a steal of a deal on two box fans ($15 ea. + tax) to help cool our pad in the fall and spring. After doing some research, I expect that this will quickly pay for itself due to the decreased use of our air conditioner.
    • Boots - I initially called this an impulse buy, but then Mrs. DisIndebted reminded me that we have been lamenting the quality of our hiking boots for over a year. We talk about new boots every time we take a hike (often). After our most recent hike, we decided it was time. Expensive, yes - but we feel they were worth it and plan to get LOTS of use out of them (more on that another day). 
  • Discretionary - These discretionary items are really the one area where we do not have a fixed payment due each month. We tried on several occasions to budget for these on a monthly basis, but found this difficult because of the varying number of weeks in a month. Last month I implemented a "Weekly Budget" for these discretionary items. Our weekly budget  last month was $207 (for a total of $828 monthly). However, due to some adjustments, we ramped it down to $183: $90 for groceries, $38 for dining out, $35 for entertainment, and $20 for other/household. The fact is, we are OK going over in one - so long as we don't go over for the week. Similarly, if we are way under one week - we know we are OK to go a little over the next week. For September, there were four weeks @ $207, for a total of $828 in our Discretionary budget. As you can see, we not only didn't touch our $100 buffer - we also had a surplus of nearly $18 at the end of the month. Sweet! Here are our discretionary spending details for September - which includes the costs of the camping trip (minus the $36 in campsite fees that I actually paid back in July).
7 September 2015$118.95$64.05$84.14$12.00$0.00$22.81
14 September 2015$160.77$22.23$78.65$13.00$27.12$42.00
21 September 2015$233.37-$50.37$85.35$86.68$56.47$4.87
28 September 2015$189.99-$6.99$86.92$47.67$21.44$33.96
SEPTEMBER TOTAL$810.08$17.92$335.06$159.35$105.03$103.64

  • Fixed Payments - These are the non-debt items that we can't do without. That said, we hope to minimize some of these in the coming year.
    • Rent - We like having a roof, a floor, walls, and other things that most people take for granted.
    • Electric - Without which this blog would be impossible. 
    • Other Utilities - Our landlord (swindler) bundled a bunch of utilities up (water, sewer, trash, and basic cable / internet) for a shockingly low price of $180 (much sarcasm). When we moved in, we were assured this would be $112. It is not.
    • Renter Insurance - A must for anyone.
    • Auto Lease 1 - We determined it would be best to avoid surprises, so we got a lease with maintenance coverage included. Now we no longer worry about the next $2,000 service bill from the shop. THat said, I believe we are WAY overpaying and am considering swapping this for a used car (purchased outright) as soon as the lease is up. If I don't have this payment each month, I can cope next time the check engine light comes on.
    • Auto Lease 2 - See Auto Lease 1.
    • Savings Acct. - We have debt. We do not have savings. We feel it is important to start with this so, here goes!
    • Gym Memberships - We used these 4 to 5 times a week for over six months, but have grown lazy since the wedding and thus have considered giving these up. However, the cold weather is nearly upon us and we won't have the patience for long hikes. At this price, we are OK leaving these in the equation for now. That said, if we don't get back into the gym this winter, we'll drop them like a bad habit.
    • Netflix - Because I need to watch Narcos
    • Pandora - Because we like the option to crank up some Creedence.
    • Tithing - We gave nothing in September. This actually just appeared on the budget. We are semi-regular church goers and feel an obligation to give a small amount back. 
Well - there you have it! It kinda feels dirty - like I just exposed my junk to you. I guess that isn't too uncommon on the interwebs. That said, after I post this I'll probably have that dream where I show up naked for work. 

What is the weirdest dream you have ever had? Comment below or email me at


  1. I had a dream that I had 2 pet king cobras. They were not doing well health wise and I realized it was because I was not feeding them. I was repulsed by the idea of feeding them live mice. But at the same time I couldn't just let them starve. I realized that choosing king cobras as a pet was a poor choice on many different levels and had to get rid of them. Then I woke up.

  2. Interestingly, Mrs. DisIndebted is deathly afraid of snakes... She met several on our summer hikes. There they were, sunning themselves in the ... um ... sun. Happy little snakes just enjoying the heat. I learned, quickly, to remove them from the path in the most expeditious manner possible. I never starved a king cobra - but i did elevate a black rat snake from ground to ground + 4 feet (a safe distance). It wasn't a dream, but Mrs. DisIndebted wishes it was.