-Written by Steph
It’s that time of year again! Time for our annual financial report, where we bare the details of our spending and saving over the course of 2015. I was too lazy to make the usual pretty pie charts, but I think we’ll be okay.
First and foremost, we finished the year with a combined net worth of $169,220 – that’s a $44,455 increase from last year! Our savings rate was slightly lower, at 56% compared to last years 65%, but still comfortably above our minimum acceptable level of 50%.
Our non-travel spending was similar to last year, $18,270 ($17,914 in 2014). That’s an average of $1522/month. We also spent $9404 on travel expenses ($8373 in 2014) for trips to Hong Kong / Macau, Iceland, Taiwan / Singapore / Malaysia, Montreal, and a few long weekend getaways to nearby places.
Housing beat out travel by $2 for the biggest expense of the year, at $9406 ($9359 in 2014). We’re not anticipating any major changes to this, as we have no intention on moving in the near future.
Food was our third largest expense, at $3413 ($3205 in 2014). We include groceries, snacks, and any eating out in this category. The $200 difference is accounted for by the simple fact that in 2014 we received $200 in grocery gift cards as a credit card signup bonus. So despite the frequent sky-is-falling news regarding the price of food in Canada, our spending continues to stay the same. I’ll go into more detail on food in a separate category, since it’s such a fascinating topic.
Shopping was our fourth largest category, at $1660 ($1271 in 2014). This encompasses a lot, so it gets its own section like Food.
Entertainment came in next at $996 ($1398 in 2014). The drop was really just due to not spending $500 parachuting off a mountain like we did last year. This year’s entertainment spending was mostly movie tickets and ballet lessons, plus a handful of concerts.
Bills & Utilities was $930 ($1006 in 2014). This was for two cell phones and internet. It’s probably not going to get much lower unless some new telecom providers enter the scene.
Personal Care was $688 ($753 in 2014). This was mostly Steph’s haircuts, but also includes toiletries and laundry expenses.
Other was $1173 ($919 in 2014). The bulk of it was transportation (bike expenses and bus tickets) of $676, and cat-related expenses of $371.
Detailed Food Spending
Of the $3413 in food expenses for 2015, the breakdown was 78% ($2663) groceries, 12% ($401) Steph Snacks (mostly diet coke, plus some ice cream and fancy chocolates), 8% ($272) restaurants, 2% ($57) Costco membership, and under 1% ($17) maple butter. Grocery spending averaged $222/month, which is very reasonable.
Detailed Shopping Spending
Shopping was up a bit from last year, increasing to $1660 from $1271.
The biggest category here was electronics as usual, at $620, though a big chunk of that was misfortune – after many good years, Cel’s computer monitor finally crapped out for good and needed replacement, which was $133. We also bought a Fitbit ($85), a tablet ($140), and a lot of video games.
Clothing was another big expense, at $364 for the year. That was mostly due to Steph losing weight and needing to replace a lot of work clothes. Cel also needed a new swimsuit, and the usual socks and underwear purchases.
The third large sub-category here was shoes, at $241. There’s no good reason for this, except that Cel simply wore through shoes like crazy this year.
Other Shopping expenses were unremarkable – there were some ebooks, kitchen things, sunglasses, and so on.
Our highest month was August at $1853, and our lowest was January at $1337. Our general trend of spending more over the summer and less over the winter continued in 2015.
Goals for 2016
- It really seem ridiculous to spend $272 on restaurants, so the goal is to try to drop that closer to $200 for 2016.
- Our clothing and shoe spending was a little insane. This should correct itself in 2016 since we have plenty of socks and underwear now, Steph’s work wardrobe has been fixed, and Cel has better quality shoes, but we should keep an eye on it.
- Travel spending was through the roof this year. Let’s go to some cheaper places in 2016.
Overall, we had a fantastic financial year. We maintained a reasonable spending level, saved a great percentage of our incomes, and saw a huge net worth increase. We look forward to another great financial year in 2016!