The car debt payoff progress report this month, in my humble opinion, deserves an A (B+ maybe). Despite higher spending, I was able to put a decent dent in the debt in May. I was apprehensive to see the final amount because I had a friend from Hawaii come visit. Then another from Miami. I certainly felt it in the entertainment category. But I still remained laser focused on becoming debt free by the end of year.
This month wasn’t full of anything too exuberant in terms of entertainment and no out of the ordinary expenses arose. Tracking my expenses has become more of a habit rather than a nuisance. I decided to use a spreadsheet app to track everything. Needless to say, it’s as organized as 5 different spreadsheets can be. Now to the down and dirty of the specifics.
Car Debt Payoff Progress
As reported in last months update, I had $9,339.24 remaining on the loan. This month, I’m happy to say it’s down to $7,958.40. I managed to put a whopping $1,400 towards the debt. My biggest month so far. The goal is becoming much more tangible and within reach than I originally thought. As I’ve said before, setting bigger and bigger benchmarks each month has yielded more motivation than ever. I’m still finding balance between this goal and living my life. The scales seem to tip one way or another, but this month they seemed to balance out.
I often forget that, sometimes, few people see what I see when it comes to being completely debt free. I just have to remind myself that despite sacrificing some things now, it will have been well worth it once I achieve this goal. Self-motivating pep talks are needed from time to time to stay on the right path. Hopefully, next month is promising, but there are some expected higher expenses than normal. Car insurance and a short vacation.
The Month Of May Expense Report
As I mentioned earlier, I was worried about going crazy with spending since friends were in town. All in all, I stayed within reason when it came to spending this month.
I was able to save $60+ on my vaping expenses by switching to an online supplier. So that definitely helps free up some cash. I’m also working on something to save on my car insurance, but I’ll talk about that next month when the final results come in.
So here it is, the month of May:
Expense Report Breakdown
The fixed expense category didn’t change too much. It’s still hovering around the $700 area month to month. But the variable expenses, of course, changed a bit.
Groceries: I didn’t go over too much here. On average I’d say I spend around $200 and this is pretty accurate
Transportation: I’m spending a little more in gas, as I’m splitting time between home and my girlfriends house a little more nowadays.
Dining out: Honestly, I’d say this is pretty good. I’ve been better about eating out during the weeks and opting for more store bought, home cooked meals. It could definitely be lower, but that’s my one weakness I’m still working on.
Entertainment: This included everything from alcohol, creek trips, and everything else that counts as fun for me. It’s higher than normal, but that’s to be expected. I’m wondering how this will fare with next months vacation coming up. Might have to enact some no spend challenges, here and there, for the rest of the month.
Poker: I’ve decided, for now, to put trips to the card room on the back burner. I’m super determined to see changes in the car debt payoff progress, so I’m cutting it back. Poker will always be there. I’m still playing my usual bi-weekly home games and this month, I didn’t spend. I won. $40 spent and $90 won, so my expense was recovered and then some. I still chose to list it as an expense for record keeping sake.
Credit Card: I was hit with my annual card fee this month of $59. I should probably look into a no-fee card, but it’s a Capital One rewards card and the fee doesn’t hurt too much. The benefits however outweigh the fee at this moment.
Misc: Included here was a ton of things outside my list of categories. Gifts for Mother’s day, my step fathers birthday, random things here and there. My girlfriends place was broken into recently, so I bought some door alarms from home depot. I also purchased some advertising on Facebook for the blog. That yielded very little positive results so I won’t be doing that again.
And last, but not least Savings Rate. I calculated this based on my income that month. The money left over from last month was not used to calculate this. I’m pretty happy to see a number like 54%. Moving forward, I’m aiming to accurately portray what’s left over from the previous month.
I feel great about this month. I’m putting a lot more focus into my finances and it’s paying off. I’m curbing my spending even more, but there’s still more to do until this debt is gone.
Side note, I’m putting a lot more focus into the blog itself. Both front end and on the back end.
The main takeaway from these reports are two-fold. I want to see the progress made by the time I’m ready to say good-bye to this debt and hello to being debt free. The other part is for you guys. Hopefully, some one reading this can see the progress I’m making and see that anyone can change their mindset about money. There’s nothing special here, no crazy income, no expensive lifestyle, just determination to change my habits.
I’m determined to get out of the cycle of normalizing debt when it doesn’t have to be my normal.