Each month I will provide an overview of my income and my expenses. Ever since I started going to university I kept track of every single euro coming in and going out – and not going out of course! While that sounds like a lot of work, it has become routine for me to open my trusty Excel spreadsheet in the evening and quickly update its numbers.
- Paycheck: €1,937
- Other: €230
- Rent: €350
- Home appliances: €18
- Restaurant: €4
- Holidays: €150
- Games/PC: €44
- Subscriptions: €8
- Entertainment: €13
Eagle-eyed readers may have noticed that my budget is off since I don’t appear to eat! Ever! Thankfully that is very much untrue. I simply have no food and groceries related expenses because I still live with my parents and have done so since graduating past summer. To compensate for looting their fridge on a regular basis I pay them rent for my old room.
June proved to be a decent month again for me with a savings rate of almost 72.9%. While that seems like a lot, especially considering that my goal is to save 50% of my net income, keep in mind that I still occupy my parent’s upper floor and have a low cost of living. Total savings were €1,580. Of the money I saved €95 went to a Belgian-style tax optimized personal pension fund through an automated contribution. The other €1,485 I instantly poured into my ETF investments.
Spending was slightly up from May, mainly because of a one-week vacation, during which I spent about €150 – plane tickets were bought two months prior for only €60 and I stayed for free at a friend’s apartment. The dreaded Steam Summer Sale also started a bit earlier than expected, robbing me off 44 hard-earned euros.
My main goal, as previously stated, is to save and invest at least 50% of my income. My current rates for 2014 show that I am well under way:
- January: N/A
- February: N/A
- March: 87.4%
- April: 65.3%
- May: 78.6%
The savings rates for January and February have been omitted because of a tracking error in my spreadsheet – mea culpa! However, averaging at 76% these numbers show that I am comfortably in the driver’s seat on my long road to financial independence. With every passing month, I feel better and better about my choice to pursue financial security and freedom. As a result, I am now more anxious than ever to continue and I hope that the support I get from all of you readers helps me to keep on trucking!
A saving rate of 78.6% is just amazing. Altough living with the parents helps a lot to keep the costs down. Hopefully you can shatter the goals for 2014.
Another Belgian 🙂
Thanks for stopping by, much appreciated! (Especially since you’re the first to comment!)
Living with my parents does indeed help a ton and I am immensely grateful to them for letting me stay. Next month, however, I will be moving out, so it’ll be exciting to see if I can somewhat keep up my savings rate.
I just read your seven tips to smart investing. Excellent advice, especially the part about taking it slowly and having patience.
I think the rent/loan will be the biggest cost. But it seems you are used to putting everything in a nice excel file so you should do alright.
Slow is the way to go. If the investments you have today can compound for 15 years I’m sure you will be close to FI.
Good luck with the journey to FI.
My rent will indeed take the biggest chunk out of my budget (about 20%), so I should have more than enough to cover my other expenses and still maintain a decent savings rate.
I hope you are right about the compounding! 🙂
Please keep in touch,
What does the ‘C’ with the lines through it mean? 😉
Looks like you have a great savings rate going! What kind of work do you do?
Monopoly money! 😉
At the moment I do, but we’ll see how I fare over the next couple of months when I’m moving out and renting my own appartment. I still can’t hold a candle to your savings rate though, great job!
I currently am a civil servant (boring!) in a financial department, so I get a lot of budgeting practice during the day because of Belgium’s budgetary deficits and Europe’s ongoing economic difficulties. Really exciting office to work in at the moment.
Thanks for stopping by, much appreciated!