Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Income, Expenses and Savings catch-up for April - June 2016

Following on from my last catch-up post which covered my Portfolio Value and Net Worth from April to June, it's time to give a run down on how I've been tracking for my Income, Expenses and Savings rate. I like to track these to keep me on target for achieving my second goal for 2016 which includes the pursuit of Financial Independence.

Income - Apr to Jun 2016

In May I closed my Santander 1|2|3 account and opened a First Direct current account. This means "bye bye" to interest and cashback on direct debits, but "hello" to a nice introductory bonus from First Direct for switching. Since we opened a joint account too we got an introductory bonus for that as well - happy days. The reason for switching was because we've taken out an offset mortgage with First Direct and I wanted to have the money in my current account offsetting the mortgage (TheBF has his current account offsetting against the mortgage in the same way).

I also received some income from the profits on the sale of my house in May, which has gone straight into my Savings Stash to help cover future expenses.

I had more business expenses refunded this month, for business insurance purchased (£327.95). I also transferred funds from Paypal into my current account during June for eBay sales which I made earlier in the year.

My monthly income target (as noted in my FIRE Targets for 2016) is set at £3,332 per month, so I've continued to achieve that through April, May and June. BIG TICK!

Expenses - Apr to Jun 2016

Apologies for the tiny font size in this insert, it's the largest I could make the text while still fitting the whole table in!

Key points of note:
  • Household expenses were dramatically less in June because we moved house at the end of May and so I had less utility bills for my old house, and not all bills had started for the new one. Things will start to get back to normal in July
  • My car insurance was due in April which came out of my Savings Stash, but due to the house move I then had to pay more when I changed my registered address. Strangely the insurance is more expensive at our new house than at my old house which was on a busy road near a roundabout
  • I had some rare spending on clothes in June because I started playing badminton again and realised that I needed new kit to wear (my old sports clothes were long gone)
  • In April I went to the hairdressers to get my hair coloured and re-styled. Since it's quite expensive at my current salon, I only go about 3 times a year and I save up for it in my Savings Stash. I may try to find a cheaper salon in the coming year
  • Now that we're in our new house we've had some office and bedroom furniture to purchase. TheBF works from home so it's important that we have an office that he can work from. I have a personal aspiration to start working from home permanently within the next couple of years so I wanted to make sure that I also had a nice desk to base myself at. I used my Savings Stash to cover my portion of this one-off expense, and we're both very happy with the end results
  • I've begun experimenting with income generating activities since my time off earlier this year. These have involved a certain amount of investment up-front to get me going. The two I've tried so far are Kindle publishing and Matched Betting

Here's the split of how my expenses were covered from my Savings Stash (highlighted in yellow above) and from my monthly income:

Savings - Apr to Jun 2016
Subtracting my expenses (excluding expenses covered by the Savings Stash) from my income for each month I can see what I've got left to save into my Savings Stash and Freedom Kitty:

So my overall percentages of income saved each month are 48.73%, 64.22% and 77.39% respectively.

In terms of my savings rates into my Freedom Kitty (which will fund me in the 7 years between becoming financially independent at age 50 and being able to withdraw my personal pension at age 57), this is where I feel there is room for the most improvement. April and May were particularly low at 12.93% and 10.51% respectively, I think this is due in large part to going through the house move process where we spent more money on eating out for convenience, as well as various house related expenses.

My 2016 monthly target for savings into my Freedom Kitty is £1,000 per month. I'm pleased that I managed to exceed this target in June, but my monthly average to-date is £839.27 so I have some catching up to do if I'm to successfully meet this target for the year.

My Savings Stash usage looks like this for the 3 months:

So that's a pretty big catch-up, and I think this particular post has taken me the longest to write of all the posts I've done so far! I'm pleased to have done it though because I would like a history of my progress to look back on, as far as I'm concerned it's time well spent.

Do you track income, expenses and savings? If yes, how's it going for the year?


  1. Congrats on hitting the monthly target for the Freedom Kitty. Well done, and here's to closing out the year strong and hitting the big goal.

    1. Hey Mr. DBF,

      Thanks for stopping by and for your support. I'm hoping now that things are getting a bit more settled after the house move, to get even better with my saving rate and thus boost the Freedom Kitty as much as I can.


  2. Hey OR

    Great catch up and well done getting those income goals for April through to June.

    Have you taken advantage of the start of the football season for your matched betting? There are probably some decent sign on offers for a beginner like yourself and some decent reload offers on.

    Keep up the great efforts!

    1. Hey Weenie,

      Thanks for your kind words. I have to confess I've put matched betting on a bit of a back burner at the moment. I'm finding I don't have enough time while working full time to fit everything in that I want to do, and it's the matched betting which is currently taking the hit. Right now I'm prioritising 4 things: Sorting out the house unpacking/organising; Keeping on top of my Freelancing Company's accounting; Writing posts for OR; and progressing with my Kindle Publishing endeavours! Phew, I feel exhausted just writing all of those down. Hopefully when I'm next on a "mini retirement" again I'll have a bit more time for matched betting too!


  3. Hi Organised Redhead,

    Moving house is a massive deal both in terms of the big financial outlays at the start and also the huge amount of physical and emotional energy it takes. I think it took me about a year to recover from our last house move. I think you're doing really well!

    1. Hi Ellie,

      Thanks so much for your kind comment, I really appreciate it. You are not wrong, moving house has been a really big undertaking and I feel like I'm only just now starting to feel like things are getting back to normal. We still have bits to do, but there's more rooms without boxes to be unpacked now than there are with!

      I've just taken a peek at your blog and have signed up for future updates, I love to find other UK bloggers.