Budgeting For A Single (no Kids, Etc)

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  #1  
Old 09-14-2011, 08:55 AM
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Budgeting for a single (no kids, etc)

So I've been reading the monthly budgeting threads and thinking I need to pull mine in a bit. I've really only been tracking my spending for a couple months (this time...), so I'm hoping for some help

For a single woman with 2 dogs, I'm right now looking at $300 in food and $30-$40 in HBA/drugstore/other (not including clothing). I know that's too much but actually only about $80 of the food has been grocery store because I've been doing Nutrisystem. So that will obviously decrease a LOT because I'm planning to stop the program and follow their flexing (I've lost 40 lbs to get to my goal ). That's partially why I don't have much idea of how much it will be. Before I was doing Nutrisystem, I was buying a lot of different food and not couponing.

Here's what I'm thinking for October:

$150 Groceries
$20 Drugstores (and Target/Walmart/Kmart, etc. - household & HBA) I now have a big HBA & household stockpile and can be picky with deals
$30 Dog Food & supplies
$300 Gas wish I could get this lower
$30 Dining out
$110 Entertainment As a young single, I think this is realistic, though I'd like it to be less! Includes 1 Kindle book
$75 Clothing & Laundry (I do not have a laundry machine)
$60 Gifts - big birthday month 2 kids, 1 adult...even that seems a little low...

It seems a lot to spend on unnecessary items, but I need to try to balance having a life and saving money.

Would love to see other singles' budgets and hear some
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  #2  
Old 09-25-2011, 02:12 PM

RE: Budgeting for a single (no kids, etc)

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Satori has posted more than 200 great deals!Satori has posted more than 200 great deals!Satori has posted more than 200 great deals!
wow, seems a bit excessive but if you can afford it...

If not I'd drop the diet plan and learn about healthy eating and cook from scratch which will radically drop your food bill. Its not hard, you figure small plate, about half full of streamed veggies, 1/4 with a non fried lean protein (fish, chicken, turkey, ostrich ect) and 1/4 with a carb. Premade stuff is a killer on your waistline.

$75 on washing? Thats INSANE! If you have hookups you can buy used machines for $50-100 on craigslist or put that money into payments for brand new machines. If you don't have hook ups buy a portable, you can find used ones for around $150 on craigslist or convert a full sized one into a portable one.

$140 on eating out and entertainment. I cringe spending $10 a month on our family of 3 to eat out on our monthly day long shopping trip. $140 for 1 person I can't imagine. How about finding cheaper things to do? You can do a lot of fun stuff for FREE. Eating out also tends to not be healthy and diet friendly. If your spending it to keep up with your friends maybe suggest some no costs things to do or find some cheaper friends

$300 gas, why is the gas so high? Is car pooling or public transportation an option? How about bike riding? Its easy to bike 5-10 miles if you live in a flat area.
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Old 09-26-2011, 02:36 AM

RE: Budgeting for a single (no kids, etc)

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jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!jlperschke has posted more than 1000 great deals!  WHOA!!
I'm married, but I don't have any children. I agree with Satori -- it's high, but if you can afford it, I don't see the harm in it. Any savings is good savings!

To give you an idea, we spend $100 on grocery/cleaning/HBA a month and I spend around $50 a month on pet food/supplies for a ton of animals.

I'd suggest making your own powdered laundry detergent to save on the washing/drying. It's quick and easy, and the powdered stuff can be taken with you to the laundry mat in a zip-lock bag or tupperware container.

For gifts and entertainment, I'd suggest checking out daily deal sites... oh, and convert your friends into being frugal!
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Old 09-26-2011, 02:47 PM

RE: Budgeting for a single (no kids, etc)

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Another DINK here (double income,no kids)
If you can afford everything in your budget, then there isn't a problem with any of those amounts. Budgets can be flexible and change as your needs/wants change as well.
I may be misunderstanding your categories, but we spend way less on laundry and that includes dry cleaning (which is a sizable bill as both of us are in underpaid "professional" positions). You may want to get a home dry cleaning kit if that is major part of your laundry. But I have also taken a cue from some of the international students I went to school with- Clothes aren't necessarily dirty just because I wore them once. That cut down on my washing needs tremendously.
And I feel your pain on gas- we spend a lot more than you. Also no way to avoid it.
One thing we like to do for cheap entertainment is have people over. We entertain other people a lot and the good thing is, if you have good friends, it isn't terribly expensive for anyone as they will probably offer to bring food/drink over frequently. And the food and drink you offer can come from your stockpile!
If you are crafty at all, it would be pretty easy to make some adorable gifts for the kids on your list (and maybe the adult too).
Good luck with your budgeting! I know mine is in constant revision!
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Old 09-26-2011, 02:53 PM

RE: Budgeting for a single (no kids, etc)

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budget

Do you have a stop and shop near by? I bought the fantastic that was on sale with a peelie (75 cents) and the dollar coupon in this weekends inserts. I bought twelve - six two times. I got 800 points in gas points! That added to the 200 I had lowers my gas by a dollar a gallon!
The deal at stop and shop is by six products get 400 points.
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Old 09-29-2011, 08:22 AM

RE: Budgeting for a single (no kids, etc)

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Thanks for all the input. I know some of it is excessive - some I have no idea how low I can go. While I can afford this budget, I'd like to be putting more towards school loans and savings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Satori View Post
If not I'd drop the diet plan and learn about healthy eating and cook from scratch which will radically drop your food bill.

$75 on washing? ...

$140 on eating out and entertainment.

$300 gas, why is the gas so high? Is car pooling or public transportation an option? How about bike riding? Its easy to bike 5-10 miles if you live in a flat area.
Definitely dropping the diet plan - I felt I did need a kick in the ... to get started with the diet but now I can easily maintain my weight without it. It was excessive, but worth it while I did it, IMO.

$75 is not just washing, it also includes buying clothing, which I need to budget in and purchase because of the weight loss. Trying not to go too crazy, especially with the holidays coming up, I'll be asking for clothing and gift cards for sure.

I agree on the entertainment...it's more like what I've been spending than what I'd like to spend. That's a category I'd like to minimize while not staying in all the time (as a single, I do need to get out and meet people )

Quote:
Originally Posted by jlperschke View Post
To give you an idea, we spend $100 on grocery/cleaning/HBA a month and I spend around $50 a month on pet food/supplies for a ton of animals.

For gifts and entertainment, I'd suggest checking out daily deal sites... oh, and convert your friends into being frugal!
Thanks - that's a lot closer to what I'd like to spend (on grocery/HBA, I only have 2 dogs) so I'm glad to see it's doable!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxykelly View Post
Budgets can be flexible and change as your needs/wants change as well.
But I have also taken a cue from some of the international students I went to school with- Clothes aren't necessarily dirty just because I wore them once.
And I feel your pain on gas- we spend a lot more than you. Also no way to avoid it.
One thing we like to do for cheap entertainment is have people over.
If you are crafty at all, it would be pretty easy to make some adorable gifts for the kids on your list (and maybe the adult too).
Good luck with your budgeting! I know mine is in constant revision!
Yes - the clothing/laundry was grouped. I do wear things more than once (not as many times as the internationals I know...), no problem
I have been having people over - it's a great money saver (even got some welcome to the neighborhood free pizzas last time), but as a single I do feel like I need to go out once in a while.
Unfortunately, I'm not crafty...I did find some great Hasbro game deals and did a drugstore baby deal (practical gift), so I'm hoping this category will be much lower than expected. Though I did end up including it in September's tracking.
Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 3kids2dogs View Post
Do you have a stop and shop near by? I bought the fantastic that was on sale with a peelie (75 cents) and the dollar coupon in this weekends inserts. I bought twelve - six two times. I got 800 points in gas points! That added to the 200 I had lowers my gas by a dollar a gallon!
The deal at stop and shop is by six products get 400 points.
I do have a Stop & Shop, but often I don't find the deals worth the gas points. The Shells near me are priced higher than other gas stations by probably 10 cents and I rarely find a deal good enough to buy things I don't need to get gas points. It looks like it's only 200 pts per 6 items in my circular - how did your deal work? Not sure if it's worth it for me since I don't need any more household cleaners...

Fantastik $2.50 each
- 75 cent peelie or coupon (how did you use both a 75 cent coupon and the $1? I think I'm missing something here...)
= $1 each

$1 x 12 = $12

40 cents (2 x 200 pts) off each gallon of gas (it's one time use, right?) = 15 gallons (17 gallon tank, this means the light is on for a while) x .4 = $6 savings. But with Shell being 10 cents more than other stations, it's more like $4.50 off and I'd be paying $12, so that's paying $7.50 for 12 bottles of fantastik that I don't need...
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