Monday, 15 April 2013

Letting the Cat out of the Bag - Budgets

I think we can all agree that moving to a big city is not a decision that should be taken lightly. After all, big cities are major hubs for, well, everything. Big, crowded city blocks filled with honking cars and Ferraris with huge engine, business people in suits on their lunch breaks, art galleries and crowded nightclubs, neon lights that never turn off, comedy clubs where the next Jeff Dunham might be spouting off-colour jokes to a laughing audience. In a fifteen minute walk – the amount of time it would have taken me to make my way to the nearest bus stop – I could find all these people and places, and probably repeat the process before lunch, too.

Of course, because big cities are close to all of this, living in the city is more expensive than living in suburbia and, as a full-time student, I’ve found that such expenses seem to run extremely high extremely fast.

Fortunately, I’m not alone in my shiny, new Big City Life. After a little less than two years, this little kitty and her tom cat decided to venture away from the protection of their respective mother cats and move in together.

 Admittedly, we’re still getting used to all the expenses of living on our own. Our monthly budget is (more or less) the following:

Rent: $800
Utilities: $100
Renter’s Insurance: $30
Car Insurance/Payments: $700
Gas: $200
            Food: $400
          Internet Bill: $50
+             Other random expenses

This monthly budget doesn’t include things like cell phone bills and tuition fees because, as I’ve adamantly informed the tom cat, I’ll be paying for those myself, thank-you-very-much. These two little tid-bits ding me about $3500.00 a year.


Because this just a bare bones budget, I know that we’ll probably end up shelling out more than that, too. My goal here is to figure out what we need versus what we “need.” Once I have that worked out, I can redraft our budget and find where we’re not following it. 

Overall, I think I’m going to be collecting and checking a lot of receipts. 

What about you? What are some of your budgeted expenses and how do you manage to stick to them?

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