One of my favorite quotes is “if you want to make a new cake, you have to change the ingredients.” My financial cake has not been tasting good lately, so it’s time to switch things up.
I always thought I was being super responsible financially and hated the advice of how to save a bit each month because I don’t buy coffee every morning, I don’t have cable and I so rarely go out to eat, but this month I found out there is squish room in EVERY budget, you just have to consider what’s important to you and make cuts.
My new mortgage + my HOA saves me $80 a month from what I had been paying (paying less per month was a requirement when I was home shopping and thanks to the market, I got a place I love for less!) and updating my car insurance to my new address resulted in $10 savings on that! I downgraded my Blockbuster online account since I hadn’t been finding time to watch many movies anyway, saving $10 each month as well. Finally, my health insurance monthly payment went up, so I changed plans and my new one saves about another $10 from the original plan I had. That’s $110 a month!
I’ve also recently conceded that an eight-month emergency fund is A. a little excessive (probably great advice for different situations, like a one-income family, just to be safe) and B. the bane of my existence. I have five months and it’s a nice, round, plushy number. Call me happy.
I actually had almost six months so I’m going to take the extra and pay off my credit card that crept up over the summer (“saving” the payment I was making on it, anywhere from the $15 minimum to $100/month) and overpay on my smaller student loan next month (not saving money yet, but shortening the payment period to help future MJ save).
I think a big drive for these changes was that I was tired of the monotony of spending bare bones money on the same things every month and feeling like I constantly had to save every single penny. I’m single and in my 20s and should be having a little more fun!
So there you have it, I’m saving some money, spending more money elsewhere…just a reshuffling really, but I think I’m going to be happy with this new cake for at least a while now that I’ve learned to be flexible with my spending and my attitudes about money.