Friday, January 13, 2012

December Monthly Recap

December was a challenging budget month for family Lwil. Our Christmas spending was in line with our expectations, but we didn’t quite have the surplus funds we needed to handle things. For the month, we spent over our income by about $1000, which is what we had projected in Christmas spending. Our debts went up slightly from November. Finally, we are making some significant changes to our budget to in order to make progress with our highest interest rate debts.

Here’s how the rest of the month went


  • Overall 2011
    • Increase retirement accounts by 10% (completed) 
      • We had a great December, gaining over $1500. We met our goal of 10% gains (10.99%) for the year.
    • Eliminate Credit Union Debt (incomplete) 
      • YTD Paid $3,041 (24%) We made a fair amount of progress, but this goal will carry over to 2012
    • Sell Condo (Completed)
    • Move into our own house (completed)
  • December 2011
    • Debt Reduction: Total Owed to $76,550 or less (incomplete)
      • We were not able to reach this goal
    • Blog more: Post at least weekly in December, expand site to include Tri Training (Incomplete)
      • I failed at this, completely.  It’s a shame too, I had a great training month in December, and I want to start writing more, but I haven’t had the time.
    • Cash fund: start setting away a portion of my weekly cash withdrawal towards medium and long term expenses (Completed)
      • I did start this, but also had some expenses come up that I used the extra cash to pay for.

Debts 10/1/2011: $77,270.00


Total Owed





Amex CC






Credit Union






School Loan






Citi Bank CC



0% (Dec 12)

0 $2,884

Personal Loan




$150 $60,437

Total Remaining: $77,632.00 (12/1/11)
Progress MTD: +$362.00 (+0.46%)
Progress YTD: -$161,601.00 (-67.55%)

December Notes on Debt:
Due to the  timing in November, our Student loan payment didn’t post in December. We also added some debt to our Amex account.  Overall, we had a pretty poor month of December, but we took steps to shore up our finances for 2012

Amex Cash Back Rewards YTD: $7.21 ($750 used, overall reward $757.21)
In November, we earned $75.08. We cashed in an additional $200 in rewards points

Savings 1: $115 (MTD +$4 and YTD -$4,073)
Savings 2: $1,019 (MTD +$9 and YTD +$923)
Total Allocated: Dropping this feature for the remainder of 2011 Due to decrease in Savings

Emergency Savings:
Savings 1&2: $1134
ING: $963
Total: $2,097 (MTD +$113 and YTD -$8,225)

Retirement Accounts:


Month Start

Month End

Mrs. Lwil’s



PF Account 1



PF Account 2






MTD Change: +$1,551 (+1.37%)
YTD Change: +$11,307 (+10.99%)

December Spending:
Our December spending was well over what we projected.  As a result, our debts went up slightly, and we missed several goals.  We need to change things up if we’re going to continue making progress going forward.

January outlook:
We are projected to have a shortage of $13 in January.  That could change depending on some changes that we’ve made to our budget. We’re looking at multiple changes in 2012.  

January Goals
Budgeting: reduce our expenses enough to make up for the budget shortfall we’re facing
Blog more: post at least weekly in January, expand site to include Tri training.
Expenses: find 1 way to reduce expenses or increase income

2012 outlook
There were several items that changed in our budget. Day Care expenses are going up by about $30 a month. Food, Cash, and Gas expenses are projected to stay the same. We’ve added an extra $350 monthly debt payment towards our highest interest debt. This should help to bring debts down faster. To accommodate this, I’m suspending my personal debt payments, retirement account funding, and canceling a gym membership.  I’m the most uncomfortable with suspending my 401K funding, but it wasn’t much per check, and I hope to restore funding after a few months.  I’ll still qualify for a company contribution.

2012 Goals
Increase Retirement accounts by 10%
Eliminate AMEX and Citi Bank Debt
Fund Oil/Heat payments with cash instead of Credit Card


debt consolidation companies california said...

At the end of every month, it's very much essential to calculate total expenses and find out how to reduce daily expenses.

Credit Card Debt said...

So financial year 2011-12 is now on verge to end. So,I want to know some strategies that will help me to save more and get maximum tax refunds at the end of next financial year!

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