Club Thrifty June Budget Breakdown

pool

The neighborhood pool closest to my house…..

It’s finally summertime, and I’m happy to report we’ve been spending the majority of our free time outdoors.  Our new neighborhood does have an HOA (homeowner’s association), but the $360 annual fee does include access to three parks and two community pools.  Needless to say, we’ve been swimming at least ten times since the pools opened a few weeks ago.  Since it’s just around the corner from our house, it’s a lot like having our own pool.  The only difference is, we don’t have to clean it or take care of it.  Oh, and it’s not taking up our entire backyard either.  I like it.

When it comes to our financial well-being, May’s budget was pretty average for the most part.  We did go over budget in two categories, but I’m not sweating it.  For starters, Greg signed our oldest daughter up for swimming lessons to the tune of $50.  It wasn’t planned, but I think swimming lessons are a really good use of funds.  We also splurged for some tickets to see Pearl Jam this fall.  It wasn’t in the budget, but we decided we could swing it.  After all, if we aren’t supposed to splurge for the things we want in life, what are we all working so hard for anyway?  Am I right?

Anyway, it’s that time again- time for me to share the intimate details of my monthly budget for all the world to see.

Wait for it….wait for it……

Club Thrifty June Budget Breakdown

  • Mortgage: $1,500
  • Groceries: $600
  • Daycare: $570
  • Internet: $51
  • College L: $55
  • College V: $55
  • Gas/Misc.: $200
  • Cell Phone: $55
  • Health Ins.: $393
  • Electric: $80
  • Gas: $20
  • Sewer: $35
  • Water: $50
  • Life Ins. (H): $73.31
  • Grass: $52.25
  • Dental Groupons: $80
  • SEP IRA: $1,000
  • Roth IRA: $1,000

Total: $5,859.56

A few things:

Our summer spending should be pretty low-key since we went ahead and temporarily bumped our grocery budget up.  However, I’m worried about this fall already.  For starters, I am taking my brother on a surprise vacation to the Caribbean (he doesn’t know where he’s going) for 5 days over labor day weekend.  Our flights were free aside from taxes and fees,  but I did pay out-of-pocket for a cheap all-inclusive resort.  We’re also heading to New Orleans for a convention in September and to Denver, Colorado to see Pearl Jam in October.  Then, in November, we’re going to London and Paris for a week.  Our flights and hotels were paid for with points, but it won’t be cheap by any means.  We still have to eat, see all the attractions, and buy a few souvenirs!

Anyway, my hope is that we’ll be able to bankroll all of our travel without compromising our savings goals.  With that being said, I think it’s time for me to get back to work….and fast.

Is you summer spending under control?  Are you worried about any upcoming expenses?

 
About Holly

Holly Johnson is a wife, mother of two, and frugal lifestyle enthusiast. She is the co-founder of Club Thrifty and a staff writer at Get Rich Slowly, Frugal Travel Guy, and U.S. News and World Report's "My Money Blog." Holly has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger Personal Finance, Fox Business, and Daily Finance.

Comments

  1. I’m finding summer is heavier on my budget than winter even though we are usig less electricity. We are camping more and therefore spending more on petrol. We also have weddings to attend and they have proven costly!

    Love the idea of having a pool for your area Wish it was warm enough over in the UK for a pool!

    Miss Tulip x
    The Thrifty Magpies Nest

  2. For us this summer has already been expensive because of our (hopefully) upcoming adoption! Sounds like you have a ton of really fun stuff coming up this fall!!

  3. Our goal should we decide to move again, is to find a community with a pool. I’m like you…I’d love having one at our home but would not like the maintenance. Best to leave that up to someone else but still be able to enjoy all the benefits.

    • I love having it just around the corner! My kids love to swim and will literally swim all day long. It’s great exercise and they get to meet new friends all the time. Plus, since we already paid our HOA dues, it’s basically “free.”

  4. We are going to have a fairly large landscaping project down. I am terrible at keeping up with bushes and plants so we are going to get some quotes on what it would cost to rip out all the plant life that is growing directly around our house and then put down gravel (or maybe mulch, but most likely gravel). Since it is the begining of the slower season and we are willing to let them do our project around others we are hoping to save some money that way.

    • I hear ya! I want to have the front of our house redone next year. Too many daffodils and tulips- they looked great for about 3 months but now they are dead and gone. It looks terrible. I want something that looks good all the time and maybe some low-maintenance ground cover.

  5. When you go to Paris, the Louve Museum can take atleast one whole day by itself. Also, Versailles is extremely close, and I liked it better than most of Paris.

    • I don’t know if we’re going to the Louvre for that reason. We’re only going for two days =/ We really need to start planning things soon!

      • When we went to Paris, Cheryl had a great idea with the Louvre (a guidebook suggested it, and I recommend this also). Pick the five things you want to see and just go see those things. You’ll spend only a few hours and you’ll see TONS of art on your way to those few points. You seriously could waste your vacation looking at old stuff instead of having a blast doing other things. I loved Paris. London….not so much. Fun, but not like Paris.

        • That’s actually a really good idea. It seems like a shame not to at least go and see the Mona Lisa or something….the Louvre is literally down the street from our hotel.

          Why didn’t you like London?

        • We kind of tried to just see a few things in the Louvre one evening , but my sense of direction is horrible and it’s such a huge museum that the ‘pick X number of exhibits/art pieces’ idea really didn’t work for me :( I just ended up frustrated, lost, and somewhere in part of a mummy tomb lol

  6. Sounds like a fun fall! I love community pools. Our old house in Michigan was by one and we belonged to it (no homeowners association….it was a “club”). Between the daily swims and the swim team for the kids, we definitely got our money’s worth.

  7. Looks good Holly! That’s awesome you have a pool so close to you. I’m really hoping we’re done with our major expenses for the summer. We’ve been spending quite a bit the past month or so, but it was all planned stuff and stuff we needed. We just booked a trip to Chicago for right after FinCon, all with points of course, and are going to be low key after that as we want to do something international next year.

  8. That is so cool to have a neighbourhood pool, my daughter would love that! I too spend more in the summer than in winter. We tend to go for more day trips out and camping weekends when the weather is nice which in themselves don’t cost a lot but together they soon start adding up.

  9. I better not tell my wife that you are going to see Pearl Jam. My wife is a huge fan, but they don’t come around here often.

  10. I definetly feel like our summer spending is out of control, it was planned, but spending money isn’t my favorite thing. Our vacation to see family over Memorial Weekend, Mother’s Day/Mother’s Birthday, Graduation, Father’s Day, trip to see friends within driving distance, and our vacation coming up in July! We planned and saved for 90% of it but it still hurts.

  11. I always thing savings goals or paying down debt if you have it is most important, but after you meet those goals, I think it’s fine to spend for things that make you happy. The hard point is knowing exactly how much you do need to save. With the solo 401k, I can put in quite a bit of money, but sometimes it’s kind of like, “Should I sock another $500 in here or go on a weekend trip?” I know it’s a great problem to have, but that’s what I struggle with, especially in the summer.

  12. I’m requesting an update on your personal experience at the dentist from these groupons! hahah. I am sort of high maintenance when it comes to doctors (I have a lot of them in my family), so I’m really curious to see how it goes. Good luck! :)

  13. I always spend more in Summer, but I budget for more activities, so it works out. That’s awesome that you’ve got a pool almost in your back yard…I want one!

  14. I think the swimming lessons are a good investment. Especially now that you will be spending more time at the pool! Not to mention swimming is great exercise. Hope June is a great month for you guys- I can’t believe how fast it’s going!

  15. Spring was pretty expensive since we bought a car, so summer has to be better! We have been taking some weekend trips though, but I’m not going to sweat it too much.

  16. Every time I see people’s budgets with mortgage or rent payments that are significantly smaller than mine, I think about how nice it would be to not live in New York. It really is crazy how much more we pay to live here. We have a community pool too, though, and I love it. Despite our HOA, it actually makes for VERY cheap summer entertainment for our family and friends.

  17. Take away the IRAs and mortgage and you’re down to less than $2500 in monthly living expenses. That’s pretty awesome. As is, you’re living an upper middle class lifestyle for under $4K/month. Other people spend twice this amount to have the same exact lifestyle. Frugality is awesome!!

  18. Isn’t it great to spend so much time outside?!
    Our summer shouldn’t be too expensive, however we are traveling to a wedding in September that is sure to be pretty expensive!

  19. That is a nice pool! We have a small one here for the apartment complex, but I enjoy the pool at my parents’ community better, since it’s indoors and heated. I definitely agree that it’s worth the HOA fees to not have to maintain it! I’m hoping June and August will be low-key, but I’m going to a wedding in July, and September is the start of an onslaught of birthdays and anniversaries.

  20. Wow, that’s a lot of travel this year! Does Greg get a lot of time off or are you really strategic about how he takes time off with weekends and stuff?

    • He gets 12 paid days off but we’re able to stretch them because he has a weekday off every other week since he works some Saturdays. He also negotiated some unpaid leave when he took this job because we both knew that 12 days wouldn’t work at all. We just factor his unpaid time into our budgets the best we can. He’s getting more overtime than we planned so it has worked out well so far.

  21. That’s great that your saving 2 grand a month in IRA’s. Many can’t do 200 a month. Yeah cash flow does take a beating in the summer because naturally people are out more and when you’re away from home you eat out more. I hope to one day save 2 grand a month like you. Well done.

  22. That’s a nice pool! I wish it was warm enough here for us to use an outdoor pool, but it’s just to cold. Maybe one day! Your travel plans sound exciting too.

  23. With summer brings more spending, all my friends want to go here and there and so do I to be honest. I make sure I pay my debt as soon as I’m paid so that I can’t overspend. Plus I have time off over the summer so it makes it harder to control my spending.

  24. The swimming lessons will be worth the $50, especially since you have a pool next door. I love pools but I wouldn’t want the maintenance of one. They seem like a bit of a pain to me. You’ve got the next best thing. That’s so sweet you’re taking your brother to the Caribbean. Our summer is busy but we don’t have any humongous (i.e. super costly) travel plans.

  25. Summer is more expensive for me as well. But at least I have more fun. Save in the winter to enjoy the summer.

    This year we are going to try to do more free stuff though. We already have planned crashing our friend’s pool (we know three people with pools), free summer concerts, and a lot of hiking. We’ll see how it turns out.

  26. Not bad Holly! I get a bit depressed looking at other people’s budgets because I think “if only I didn’t have those student loans…” One day ;) Our car insurance is what kills us. It’s every six months so it’s easy to forget about, even though I track our spending each month and clearly see when it’s coming up on our pivot table.

  27. Summer tends to be fairly inexpensive since the DH is busy up to his neck with work contracts so we don’t have much time to take a vacation or spend money. We do travel during the winter months so that’s when we see the increase in our spending.

    • It’s always something, right??? We’re pretty cheap during winter because I get depressed and don’t want to go anywhere. Ha!

  28. That pool is an awesome benefit of your HOA. A lot of people pay HOA fees and don’t get many benefits but having two local pools is really nice, especially with small kids. Was that a factor in your decision to buy?

  29. Sounds like you got a lot of great trips ahead! I like the idea of a community pool versus having my own too. Yeah you gotta deal with other people, but the upkeep on having your own pool is a PITA. I don’t expect my expenses to go up more more summer, but hopefully my income won’t drop because it tends to slow down in summer.

    • I actually don’t mind having other people at the pool. It’s mostly just kids and their parents like us, and my kids LOVE playing with other kids!!!

  30. Oh I love having the pool in our neighborhood, also part of our HOA. It gives us “free” entertainment anytime we want.. and is also a great place to socialize with the neighbors.

  31. I look at this and think, I’ll never be able to afford children. My monthly budget is significantly less than this because I’m single and I have so many fewer expenses, like less than half.

  32. We have a couple of pools in our apartment complex, which is lovely! Our budget usually comes in fine except for all the medical crap my wife has to deal with. That’s the biggest killjoy for us every month.

  33. We bumped groceries to $600 as well. We love hosting parties and BBQ’s, and the food budget always gets hit. I call it “seasonal budgeting”. In the winter, we can drop as low as $450, since we’ve done canning and, bought meat in bulk, etc.

    And have safe travels. Sounds like a fun summer so far!

  34. Budget looks good, particularly the high savings rate. Does your mortgage include property taxes? If not, you should allocate $ for property taxes/insurance

    • My mortgage includes property taxes and homeowner’s insurance. It is paid out of an escrow account that they collect from each of my mortgage payments!!!

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