Expenditure Update: December 14

With this month’s update, the 15HWW household has tracked its expenses conscientiously for 17 straight months (starting from Aug 13) and there’s also finally a calendar year of expenses. I would probably be spending some time in the next couple of weeks to dissect this huge amount of data which I am pretty excited about! (What a numbers geek I am… *sigh*)

And let’s just start with the most obvious: The entire year’s expenditure

After including this month’s expenses of $4104, both of us have spent a total of ~$59,000 for the whole of 2014. That’s 50% above the target of $40,000. But I do remember the caveat of excluding vacations for that target. So if the expenses for both the Taiwan and Australian trip and the jewellery were taken out, total expenses should comfortably sit within $50,000.

Nonetheless, these are still money spent and it’s good to know that we spent a monthly average of $5,000 in the past year. Using our combined income currently, that should still amount to a 50% savings rate.

With regards to December’s monthly challenge, it was pretty good as I do experience some considerable uplift when I actively practice gratefulness just before I sleep. Although I do find myself repeating this specific mantra: I am grateful to have a beautiful/prudent/frugal/understanding/smart/… wife (Ok, Mrs 15HWW’s birthday is coming)  😉

January’s Challenge: Sleep before 11pm

This is somewhat related to the previous challenge and the target I set myself is to get in bed by 10:45pm, spend a couple of minutes practicing gratefulness and hopefully doze off by 11pm. Work has finally started and having enough sleep is absolutely essential for me to function at peak capacity.

So, here’s Dec’s expenses:


Eating Out: $814.46

Hawker ($194.30) – Less cooking this month as both of us spent more time out, especially me

Fast Food ($80.70) – 2 Mac breakfasts, 4 Mac lunches/dinners, a meal at Long John Silver’s and 2 Subway meals. I realise we are pretty susceptible to those coupon vouchers that were mailed to us. Yeah, I know. That’s a weak excuse.  🙄

Restaurants ($539.46) – We dined out in restaurants pretty often this month with 14 entries here. That’s like >3 times a week but we did enjoy it and well, it’s December, isn’t it?

Groceries: $52.10

Supermarket ($52.10) – Fruits, corns and carrots and quite a bit of butter as the Mrs baked quite a few cakes for some of our social gatherings

Beverages & Snacks: $66.95

Beverages ($49.40) – Bought some beer and there’s also about 5-6 cups of bubble tea between us :-)

Snacks ($17.55) – Bought a big bag of M&M’s as part of my X’mas gift to myself. Some cheese fries from Wendy’s too. Pretty good since it’s my first time there. 

Utilities: $145

Electricity, Gas & Water ($87.04) – There’s a chance it might go lower in the next few months as electricity tariffs go down with the drop in oil prices. Although some of my stocks like Sembcorp and MTQ are reeling from the oil shock, there’s some direct benefit to me here to offset the loss.

Cellphones ($57.96) – $28.03 for the Mrs’ plan and $29.93 for mine.

Transport: $100

1 EZ Reload transaction for each of us.

Departmental: $439.05

Clothing ($439.05) – More than $100 was spent on socks and underwear. Hey, even Prof Dumbledore would like a pair of new socks for X’mas. I realise the Uniqlo range of undergarments were really comfortable. Shoes accounted for a big part here as I also bought a new sneaker and a new pair of leather shoes.

Miscellaneous: $601.90

Gifts ($238.90) – A wedding lunch and some X’mas gifts for exchange and the children

Others ($363) – The Mrs got confirmed for her new job after a probation period of 3 months and she gave a treat to a group of friends. We also spent quite some money during a recent trip to JB with the Mrs’ extended family.

Total: $2,219.46

Overall Total: $4,104.46 (included fixed expenses of $1,885)


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    8 thoughts on “Expenditure Update: December 14

      1. My 15 HWW Post author

        Hi Thelay,

        It includes the CPF OA portion since the mortgage is included in the expenses too. Coincidentally, if the mortgage is taken out and CPF is excluded, the savings rate should still be at around 50%.

    1. LP

      Haha, I know where part of the expenses in restaurant goes to 😉 A bit went to coffeebean and the other went to Astons 😉

      Good luck with your work!

      1. My 15 HWW Post author

        Hi LP,

        Yes. Beverages a little on the high side this month but it was money well spent since I get to meet like-minded people.

        Hope 2015 will be an even better work year than 2014 for you!

    2. RetailTrader

      Good luck for your new job!

      I like how you are starting to focus on non-financial goals. After all, there is more to life than money.

      But no more “chatting” before sleep? 😉

      1. My 15 HWW Post author

        Hi RT,

        Thanks for your well wishes. So far, so good. Expenses can be reined in further but the marginal benefit isn’t really that high anymore and things are almost auto-pilot these days. It is probably more worth it to focus attention and willpower on other aspects.

        Chatting is still continuing since it’s a precursor to one of our 2015 goals. =p

      1. My 15 HWW Post author

        Hi ladykiller,

        Many pay lip service to such simple exercises but the truth is that they really work, at least for that temporary moment.

        A big problem for many is knowing when and how much is “enough” on that treadmill. A grateful person is more likely to stop earlier rather than when it’s too late.