crunching the bank-statement

I have never been a good budgeter. While my income is staying (just barely) ahead of my spending, I’ve lately had a few suspicions about where that spending is actually going. To find out just how much, I dropped my bank statements from the last two months into a spreadsheet and crunched the numbers a bit. The results? Oh. Ah. Ooh. Uhg. Er…
First the good stuff: I’ve been strict with myself regarding “pocket money”; I try to make every purchase a deliberate action. As such, this (typically cash ATM withdrawals) only accounts for 2.3% of my spending during the last two months. A good thing, as I honestly have no idea what I spent that on…
Then there’s the usual crap of everyday living: books, movies, media, clothing, housewares, etc. total 11.9%, even with those silly unnecessarily-expensive kitchen knives I bought (5.4% right there). I can excuse myself an occasional excess like those knives when I see that my transportation expenses over the last two months only account for 2.7% of the total. That’s including bus and train tickets, gasoline, and even bicycle maintenance! My dreaded dental-work only ended up being 4.2%.
Now for the surprises: Rent seems reasonable (22.1%), as does my Grocery spending (11.7%), but WTF! “Dining Out” comes to 22.8% of all my spending! I was sure this one would be big, but holy crapping crap.
As it turns out, the category I was sure would be at the top (after rent) was “Tools”, which only comes out to 17%.
The tools have been paying for themselves, and will continue to do so. If anything, I now feel justified spending a little more there. But first, I have to stop with the dinners out, the fancy coffee, the cocktails at Castle Hill!


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