Wednesday, February 24, 2016

How'd we do?

No, I'm not going to post one of these at the end of every month-- but, until we get more of a system down-- yes, I am.

What I like, actually, what I love, are the phone calls, private messages, texts, and in person conversations in regards to these posts about money.

About DEBT.

Your words make me feel like I am setting an example and am holding me accountable. For that, I say thank you.

So- the question has been begged: How'd we do?

If we you were to ask me February 12 how we will fare the rest of the month? I would have probably used a few words that should not be used in good company.

February was a tough month. However, Husband asked a good question last week: Where did the money go? In those five simple words, we learned a very valuable lesson: Don't ask a question, unless you are prepared for an excel sheet with the answer. I spent some time over the weekend looking at our bank statements to see where the money went.

NOW-- if you ask me NOW, post excel sheets how we did... I am going to tell you something:

We did pretty damn well.

Let's look at some real numbers:

{{ ohhhhh.... she's going to tell us what the loan amount is! ohhhh.... she's going to tell us how much money they make! ohhhhh..... she's going to open the door to my morbid curiosity }}  

um... no. I'm going to use percentages.

Our beautiful digits: Less than 1% was spent on each of these categories:
- eating out
- entertainment (let's be honest, this is iTunes)
- miscellaneous
- laundry service
- babysitting
- Birdie's after school activities

That, my friends and fellow Debtketeers is what I call GOOD LIVIN' {L-I-V-I-N}. Consider this fun little fact about me-- We used to spend 3% at Chick Fil A and an overall of 13% was spent on eating out. How embarrassing is that?!

More good stats: 5% or less was spent in the following:
- Clothing, 1% (it shows, too. Y'all, the Cagle girls need to invest in some new clothes. ALL the girls!)
- Decorating, 1.5%
- Car, 1.2%
- Target, 2%
- Groceries, 4%

Two other categories to note before we get to the BIG ones:
- maintenance, 7% (this includes the yard guys, our amazing Lorie, upkeep for the house, etc)
- utilities, 8%

Our mortgage is 12%. This surprised me, but it's not going to change and it does not bother us.

And... ready for this? Can you handle this? I don't think you can handle this. I am shouting it from the rooftops because it makes me so very proud:

FORTY ONE POINT FIVE PERCENT ON LOANS

Let me put that another way, almost HALF of what comes home went to the pesky loans. 41.5%!

I had no idea that the amount of money we decided to set aside was over 40% of what we bring home. Do you know how good that makes me feel?

How'd we do? Well, we sucked wind for a good portion of this month. We thought we had failed ourselves because of this. But, at the end of the month- to see why and where the money went, I feel so much better about it. That being said-- we had to dip into our savings a little, which is where the dejection lies. Next month, we are going to pay a little less to the loans to pay ourselves back. Safety first.

---

Tell me about these excel sheets, please.

* Open accounts online, highlight/copy everything and open excel. "Paste and match style"
* Create new column for notes -- use the following categories/create your own:

-Babysitting
-Car
-Target
-Afterschool
-Utilities
-Maintenance
-Charitable
-Credit Card
-Mortgage
-Loans
-Decorating
-Laundry
-Groceries
-Clothing
-Education
-Insurance
-Eating Out
-Entertainment
-Home Brew (Husband builds boats and makes his own beer. He's a modern day renaissance)
-Misc.

* Extend the excel sheet out and put the categories running across the top
* Place the monetary amounts under each category
* Run a sum total at the bottom; copy/paste for each cell
* If there are separate accounts, do this same thing for each account; combine totals on one sheet
* After totals are complete, look at your "CREDIT" and see the grand total-- note that cell. Under for each category. Below the category total, use the following formula: [= cell above (category total)/total credit cell]. You'll have to use the actual cell points, not what I wrote. Example: [=c55/a33]

Seriously, Wife? You really think I'm going to follow all these directions? Can't you just EMAIL IT TO ME?! Yes I can. But, isn't it more fun for you to appreciate my hard work? No? No?

If you don't know where you have been, you cannot see where you are going. The sheets show us where we have been. Next month won't be as amazing but we need to keep a good financial floor first.

REDUCTION!

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