Monday, 9 April 2012

End of first quarter

The end of March may be a week or two ago, but I have just got round to sorting out the end of the quarter's figures, so that I can compare the first three month's spending against the whole budget for the year.

Several points have come to light:
  1. The Council Tax has gone up, so I needed to adjust that budget slightly, since it was made before I knew whether it would go up and by how much. An extra £40 required in there.
  2. The electricity budget is plodding along on track but it is past the time I should have been looking for a cheaper supplier. On the "to do" list this week.
  3. The TV licence pot can be reduced - the FH will turn 75 at the end of the year, so since ours is due in July, we will only pay about half (although I don't know whether we pay it all and then get a rebate, but it will all come out in the wash!)
  4. The Grocery budget is OK, but we have to reduce the average amount spent per month in order to compensate for stocking up which took place in the wintery months. With the garden in production later in the year, this should all even out. I will keep a careful eye on this one!
  5. I have money in a pot for RAC membership, but I may take that out with Tesco vouchers. I will have to weigh up the pros and cons of that. Now that we no longer have the motorhome, I may change back to the AA, as we have a friend who is a patrolman and he gets commission on sign ups. I'll have to check into all the possibilities for this one, too.
  6. The cars are both insured for the year, and it came in at £62 more than I had budgeted, so I have had to put that into the pot. It is OK though, as I have a newer car than I had when I set the budget, so it is to be expected that the insurance was a little more.
  7. I have reduced the pot for school trips as the EFG will be out of school between the middle of June and September, and I can't imagine that they will spend the whole amount I had set aside in the Autumn. Since the YFG will not be going on a skiing trip for £999 next year, I am fine with this!
  8. I had overestimated the cat food bill, so that pot has been reduced a little.
  9. The medication bill has had to be increased. I take a daily medication which I cannot get on the NHS in the brand I need - they prescribe a generic which doesn't agree with me, won't prescribe the brand I need, so I have to buy it myself...
  10. Wavering over whether to include the interest on the ISA which has been paid or should I only include the savings I have made this year from actual income? Have yet to decide on that one!
What with all the changes, I have reduced the overall budget by £16, so that is theoretically £16 to put to savings...

And the SFT Sealed pot challenge? The pot is 3/4 full! I am so pleased - and can't wait to get it full. I haven't weighed it lately, but it is getting heavy. We have decided that we might open it for holiday spending money in the summer half term, which would still leave the rest of June to the end of September to save for a birthday treat for me! I think that however much is in there, we probably wouldn't spend it all - we have decided what we want to do when we are on holiday, so I know roughly how much cash I need for the days out....but more of that another time!

Hoping you have all had a peaceful Easter and been able to spend time with those you love. We have had UJ over for lunch yesterday, and then my Dad came over in the late afternoon for some time with the girls and us. The EFG and I have had a quiet day together today, and the YFG went out last night to a sleepover round the corner, and just came home about an hour ago. It is nice to have her back.

1 comment:

Laura @ No More Spending said...

I've been doing this too as a few of our bills went up.
I moved one of the ISA accounts to get a better interest rate - it's should pay an extra £30-£40 and it all helps.