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View Poll Results: What's your monthly budget, excluding housing, real estate taxes and health insurance
$0 to $999 10 6.37%
$1000 to $1999 37 23.57%
$2000 to $2999 33 21.02%
more than $3000 77 49.04%
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What's your monthly budget
Old 09-15-2010, 07:07 AM   #1
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What's your monthly budget

Excluding mortgage or rent, real estate taxes and health insurance what is your monthly budget?
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Old 09-15-2010, 07:29 AM   #2
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My budget would be about $900/mo without prop. taxes. My actual spending would probably be $800 or less but I leave room for an expensive car repair(my car only has 43,000 miles) or a vacation. Niether of which are an annual occurence. I could knock it down a couple hundred more if needed but then i'd have to sacrafice some things i'd rather not sacrifice.
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Old 09-15-2010, 07:42 AM   #3
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The items you asked us to exclude represent 2/3 of my budget (and I have no mortgage because I paid it off 12 years ago). What remains is about $700 a month.
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Old 09-15-2010, 08:07 AM   #4
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On the assumption that this is for expenses of a single person (not including expenses of any family members who are dependents), I voted $1,000 to $1,999 but this may be higher if I were to take more vacations. At the moment, I plan to take around 5 trips a year (2 long trips and remaining shorthauls). I was wondering what is the major expense for those who tick more than $3,000?
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Old 09-15-2010, 08:20 AM   #5
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What info/goal are you wanting to get at?
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Four people - living in a developing country
Old 09-15-2010, 08:38 AM   #6
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Four people - living in a developing country

Things less expensive than the US - any service
More, fuels/energy, electronics, air travel, cars, real estate in major cities.
0-999...
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Old 09-15-2010, 09:08 AM   #7
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Sounds kinda like a poll, so I'll treat is as such:

For 2 people: Gas (Auto) 400, Food 650, Utilities/HOA/Cell etc. 585, Meds 50, Charitable 800, Cash 260, Auto Ins. 175 for about 2920 a month. Doesn't include gifts to family or travel expenses. Mortgage paid off, no debts.

Wife is about to quit her job (for a while) so this is something I've had to reevaluate lately... I make ~80K a year excluding dividends, have about 1.5M in investments. Wife made about 30K a year. We like to travel a lot.... may have to start budgeting a little tighter.
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Old 09-15-2010, 09:09 AM   #8
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I have been tracking my expenses almost to the penny for just about 6 months now. Family of 4 in the southeast US. We are running at $1900 a month excluding those items you specified and excluding student loan payments (which would seem to logically need to be excluded to get an idea of comparable spending).

We don't have a budget, just spend what we want on items that bring value to us. The spending includes gifts, a few vacations, a few lumpy unexpected or unexpected expenses (dental care, annual house insurance, minor car repair, etc). Stuff that we will be spending on now and into retirement.

I realize our spending is ridiculously low for a family like ours that earns in the low six figures. I guess I'm pretty good at getting stuff on the cheap.
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Old 09-15-2010, 09:31 AM   #9
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~$1500/month

I give away whatever's left over
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Old 09-15-2010, 09:33 AM   #10
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$4,150 for 2 people. That's for everything including $750 set aside for future car replacement, as well as future home and car repairs. Breakdown:

$675 for groceries
$210 for auto (gas, insurance, taxes)
$140 for home (pest control, security, insurance)
$60 for pets
$475 for utilities (TV, internet, phones, water, electric)
$60 heath care co-pays
$420 money set aside for future car replacement
$200 money set aside for future home repairs
$125 money set aside for future car repairs
$1,780 for discretionary expenses (dining, travel, gifts, entertainment, electronics, home improvements, furnishings, clothes, etc...)

Charitable contributions come from our Fidelity charitable gift fund and therefore are not included in our budget.
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Old 09-15-2010, 10:03 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moscyn View Post
I was wondering what is the major expense for those who tick more than $3,000?
For us, it's travel (and has been our biggest budget expense item for over a dozen years).

Just as an example, we spent a month "down under" last year, in June, followed by a cruise (NYC - Canada) in the fall. Our expenses for just last year were a bit over $25k for both trips for anything related to travel. BTW, my DW does not "travel cheap" (e.g. no camping, and no cooking her own meals. I tried that one year when we rented a condo with a full kitchen in Hawaii and it went over poorly ).

This year, we spent three days in London, followed by a 12-day cruise of the Baltic (with stops in multiple time zones) in June.

Today? My wife (along with her travel buddy - another woman) are currently on a two-week trip out west, doing a National Park/Canyon lands/Vegas tour. I'm staying home with the puppies (one trip a year is enough for me).

In November, they are off to Egypt for a Nile cruise for a week.

Unlike a lot of folks, we did not delay travel till our retirement; it has been a budget line item and continues today. As to our total expenses related to travel this year? Stay tuned ...

Since you asked...
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Old 09-15-2010, 10:11 AM   #12
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$2180 for a family of 4.

We just ordered new energy efficient windows and are waiting to hear that they are coming to install them so I'm hoping that in a few weeks our heating and cooling bills will be reduced. A 10% - 25% savings on electricity ($110/mo) and natural gas ($150/mo budget plan) would be about $26-$65 reduction. Also, our 26 year old son is FINALLY planning on moving out in the next few months so we'll have some reduction in groceries and use of utilities.
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Old 09-15-2010, 10:33 AM   #13
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Also, our 26 year old son is FINALLY planning...
Planning or actually doing?
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Old 09-15-2010, 10:34 AM   #14
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I've been running at about $2k/mo since retiring including housing since I don't have a mortgage & not including taxes. Some months are more some less. If I include property tax, insurance but not health ins or income tax, I'm running at about $3500/mo.
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Old 09-15-2010, 10:37 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nun View Post
Excluding mortgage or rent, real estate taxes and health insurance what is your monthly budget?
Not sure if this poll will be meaningful since the budget can be for one, two or more...
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Old 09-15-2010, 11:22 AM   #16
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Ooops - I only used numbers for outgoing money (money going into savings did not make this number) I spend about $800/mo on non-housing or savings (aka phone, utilities and stuff - vacation fund counted as savings as well as new car fund or investments/cash savings)
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Old 09-15-2010, 11:41 AM   #17
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Ooops - I only used numbers for outgoing money (money going into savings did not make this number) I spend about $800/mo on non-housing or savings (aka phone, utilities and stuff - vacation fund counted as savings as well as new car fund or investments/cash savings)
I didn't include savings since that isn't a cost. Everything not spent goes to savings. And mine is for one plus 3 critters..
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Old 09-15-2010, 11:44 AM   #18
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I figured you wanted "per person", otherwise you've got a mixture of family sizes that really mess up the data.

Am I correct?
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Old 09-15-2010, 11:52 AM   #19
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Medical 85.00
Dining 350.00
Auto 170.00
Food 425.00
Entertainment 400.00
Non-Health Insurance 262.00
Household general 400.00
Utilities 600.00
TOTAL 2,692.00

For a family of four with two young kids.
Savings is about $3000 a month. The unmentioned ugly size of the mortgage payments crush the rose-colored glasses for this budget/savings picture. The travel portion of entertainment will go up substantially in 2-3 years when the kids are a bit older.
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Old 09-15-2010, 11:52 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Independent View Post
I figured you wanted "per person", otherwise you've got a mixture of family sizes that really mess up the data.

Am I correct?
That would be tough (for me/DW). She spends 2-3x what I spend on a monthly basis, if the OP's criteria is followed. I take care of all house expenses, taxes, insurance, healthcare (excluded items) while she spends most of "her" money on travel (a non-excluded item).

I gave the answer as an average, for the two of us.

BTW, I don't know about those excluded expenses. Regardless of who you are, where you live, and your expected lifestyle every "family unit" (regardless of number of folks) spend a certain amount (and yes, that includes all taxes, savings, investments, etc.) IMHO.

Time to start over?
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