March 2018 Expenditures

Copy of saved more than earned (1)

Written by Alli

March 2018 Expenditures- buying a van, PRK (Lasik) eye surgery, and other really expensive things.

This month Alli is coming at you with our March expenditures! And let’s just say…we had a REALLY expensive month. We bought Clifford the big red van, I (Alli) had PRK (Lasik) eye surgery, and we bought Matt a laptop! Clifford is a business expense, due to the fact that we will be blogging and sharing financial wisdom from the road. PRK (Lasik) is a healthcare expense and the laptop is also a business expense. For these reasons, we are not including them in our $40k per year challenge. You might think we are changing the rules because we spent a lot this month and that’s cool if you think we’re weaksauce! Feel free to read more hardcore blogs elsewhere. To us, the $40k per year challenge is about reducing personal expenses, so that’s why we are sticking to the personal categories. So let’s dive into the details.

Housing- $618.49: this is the net expense out of our pocket after we collect rental income from our tenants who rent out 3 rooms in our house. This is fairly normal, the cleaning is a tad high (it’s only $200 per month) but I’m guessing that’s because they didn’t cash a check. Our gardener is notoriously forgetful and only asks us for checks every couple months, so that’s why it’s zero this month.


Groceries- $535.32: This is high for us this month for a couple reasons. We had some friends in town (a family of 5) for a week and instead of going out to eat, we opted for cooking lots of meals at home for them. We also had my mom and aunt come to town one weekend to help us with curtains for Clifford, and we cooked them a meal in the Instant pot (carnitas tacos..yumm).

Student Loans- $500: Matt pays this every month to his mom. It’s 0% interest so we don’t see the point of paying it off.

Gasoline- $192.18: Matt drives a 2006 Prius and Alli drives a 2009 Accord, which are both for sale right now. Email us if you’re interested! Lol.

Travel- $150: I spent this reserving a campsite in September for my 8 college roommates and myself to visit Arches National Park in Utah! $134 of this will be reimbursed by the girls when that time comes. We don’t record reimbursements until they come in, so for that reason, this will hit our expenses this month.

Insurance- $145.50: For both of the cars. We also have an umbrella policy through Liberty Mutual. We keep liability only insurance on both of our cars because they aren’t worth more than $7k each.

Pharmacy/Doctor- $135.39: I had to get a prescription eye drops for my eye surgery and Matt got some blood work done. Typical routine work. We tried to get a bunch of routine work done in March since we will be changing insurance and hitting the road soon. We will have a whole video posted on which insurance we went with now that we are self-employed.

Supplements- $134.39: Various supplements including CBD oil! If you’re interested in hearing what supplements we take and why, leave us a comment below!

Eating out- $122.87: Took my mom out to dinner one night, everything else was fairly small meals eaten out!

Cars Registration- $55: ya know, gotta stay legal. This was for my Honda Accord.

Entertainment- $63.99: One of our roommates was in a local volunteer theatre program and we went to support her. All the proceeds went to charity! It was a fun night and Dinah is a star! We also went to CALM, a local museum that celebrates California’s native plant and animal species.

One of the little friend's we made at CALM
One of the little friend's we made at CALM


Late Fee- $25: Matt’s credit card number changed and it turned off AutoPay. Sad day. We got this fixed though so we won’t miss a payment again! We use credit cards for all of our purchases because travel points!

Shopping- $13.93: Some skincare things from Amazon because I turned 28 and ya know, I need an eye cream now.

Trade Commissions- $13.77: Wealthfront and 401k Fees

Itunes- $11.97: We pay for Dropbox through Itunes. $10 per month. We also pay $.99 per month for ICloud, but we are in the process of moving all that over to DB.

Gym- $5: We pay for an online yoga membership, which we will be cancelling this month because now I am a registered Yoga Teacher! Woot woot!

Total: $2,722.8

So here’s how we’re doing on our $40k challenge for 2018…We’re 25% of the way through the year, and we’ve only spent 19% of our budget…so I’d say that’s pretty damn good!


Now onto some of the “other stuff” i.e., income and business expenses:


401K Contributions- $11,026.20: All of my (Alli) paycheck went to my 401k because we were trying to minimize our tax burden for the year. Matt’s company wouldn’t let him put his whole paycheck, but he did they max they would allow.

Paychecks- $7593.03: Little lower than normal because of me putting all of my money into my 401k

Selling stuff- $1955.29: Hell yah! I’ve been working my buns off selling all our furniture and things on Craigslist and OfferUp. I imagine April’s will be much larger.

HSA Contribution- $376.92: Matt’s company automatically puts this into an HSA account, which is awesome. We strategically didn’t use the HSA funds for my eye surgery right now though because there’s this rule that you can pull out the money anytime as long as you have the receipt. So we kept the eye surgery receipt and should we need it at a later date we can pull it out then.

Dividends- $721.73: We invest most of our money in VSTAX.

Total income: $21,673.17

Business + Health Expenses:

Clifford- $8800: What a STEAL! You might be thinking. Well, Clifford has 440,000 miles on him BUT thankfully he just had a new engine put in him, and the new engine has about 60k miles. He does have a few issues and is actually in the shop right now down in LA getting a full check up before we take off. The issues seem to be small, but Matt can update further on what’s going on.

Clifford’s conversion- $1538.38: We have budgeted around $10k to get him totally functional, and it looks like we are going to come under our budget. You’ll see lots of charges for this in April's expenses.

Insulation foam from Home Depot!
Insulation foam from Home Depot!

Lasik (PRK) eye surgery- $4000: I had horrible eyes! So thankfully now I can see. This will be especially useful for van life! This will be a one time cost and will eliminate my need for glasses and contacts. It doesn't exactly pay-out economically, but contacts have never been comfortable to me, so for the convenience of not having glasses...I will pay!

Business Items- $852.87: Matt bought a laptop because we can’t have a desktop in Clifford. This also has our recurring subscriptions like ActiveCampaign and Libsyn.

Primal Noms- $60.04: We had some business meetings up in SF so this is just gas and food for our day trip.

Total business expenses: $15,251.29

April is also shaping up to be an expensive month, but we will be selling the rest of our belongings and both of our cars, so we will be making money from those. We also only worked half of April, but we both got paid out a bit of vacation, so our April income shouldn't be too shot. May on the other hand, lol!

Thanks for reading, was this insightful to you? Please let us know in the comments if you have any questions or would like further explanations!

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments