Everyone is talking about all this inflation. How everything is getting more expensive, I know we are feeling it. Aren't you? Just seems like every time you turn around you're paying more and more money for the same items.
While we were making the household budget for June I started wondering how much of an impact all this inflation has really had on our family. I planned on writing a post about how much more we are spending for our basic needs. I went digging for our budget for June '07 to compare it to June '08 and was pleasantly surprised.
Over all there wasn't much change. Technically we are spending less money this month than we did a year ago. Yup, we are spending less. We also made less so that's probably why. I'm sure if we had an extra $300 this month we would be happy to find a place to spend it. But the bottom line is that our basic expenses haven't changed very much at all.
Here is the breakdown...
Mortgage - no change, actually it went down $50 when we got rid of the PMI but we have decided to continue to make the same payment and reduce our principal that much more.
Homeowners Association - increase of $9
Cable - down $3. This one surprised me. I don't think we have gotten rid of anything, I can't remember.
Electric - no change. We are on the plan where you pay the same every month, but they didn't make an adjustment this year at all.
Car and life insurance - down $9.
Cell phones - increase of $3
Car payments - no change
IRA contributions - no change
City - increase of $7
Medical- increase of $25. We have two monthly prescriptions that we didn't have last year.
Groceries - no change. I do spend more time shopping sales and using coupons though.
Gas - increase of $40 and we still think we may need to add a little more later in the month, even with my husband picking up an extra person in the car pool.
Backyard landscaping - increase of $165. We hadn't landscaped the back yard last year.
Pocket money - no change
Other stuff - down $360.
Pretty surprising. The only thing that changed significantly was gas, which I was expecting. There were some one time expenses last year like swimming lessons, a camera, and a surround sound system we needed for our new tv. But this year we had to replace my retainer that I stepped on and broke, had to do some maintenance on our hot tub, and we have a wedding to go to. But over all actual outlay decreased, which is pretty cool.
I'm not saying that there isn't inflation, but my feelings about our budget don't match our reality. I feel pinched, strained, and pessimistic. But it seems that it's more from listening to the news than from our actual situation. Pretty interesting.
pic by: keepin' on