April Monthly Spending in NYC 2014

April Monthly Spending in NYC 2014

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April Spending in Brooklyn for a single income in a 1br apartment
April 2014 Spending in Brooklyn for a single income in a 1br apartment

Income

Now that I’m using an FSA for the first time, I’m finding it tricky to track my actual income. My take home pay already has my 401K and FSA contributions deducted. But at the end of the month I am reimbursed for my FSA claims, about $400. I suppose I should add this back in as income, though really it’s only an $80 difference.

The only other “income” I receive monthly are ATM fee reimbursements, up to $15, because thank you USAA.


Rent

I spend 47% of my monthly income on a 1br in “I’ve never heard of that neighborhood” Brooklyn. I renewed my lease for the second time in February, so I have a while to go before another stabilized rent increase.

I know this sounds crazy to people not living in a city. The general rule is to spend 30% of your income on rent/housing. But remember, I don’t have a car which means more money can go towards rent. If you’re thinking about moving here, don’t be put off by what seems like impossible rents.

Entertainment

This entertainment spending of mine really needs to calm the fuck down! Some of it was unexpected spending because I had to replace my iPod Touch. I decided to go all the way and bought the new 5th generation. It was pricey but is definitely worth it. I still am not using a smart phone and am happy with that decision. The iTouch is really all I need right now.

As personal splurges, I bought two theater tickets this month. Tickets to Heathers:The Musical were discounted to $40. Then, after hearing amazing reviews, I caved and bought a ticket to see Hedwig and the Angry Inch on Broadway in July (the air conditioning alone will be worth it).

And after much deliberation I also bought tickets to see Built To Spill later this month. I’ve seen them before but they put on an amazing show. Plus they’re in my top 5 favorite bands, so I figured I should see them while I have the chance. The tickets were $25/each so nothing crazy.

Hopefully I’ve now gotten all this out of my system and will chill out on ticket buying next month!

Food

I took a good hard look at my food purchases last month and decided to focus on cheaper groceries while still being healthy. I don’t usually eat deli meats because sodium but that’s not really a health concern for me right now. So I caved and bought some turkey + Swiss cheese. Add a little mustard and these sandwiches are tasty & simple. Best part, they’re totally cheap.

Between bringing sandwiches to work and consciously eating out less, last month I spent the least amount on food all year!

Groceries + Eating Out
Jan: $336
Feb: $339
Mar: $393
Apr: $298 whoo!


Debt Repayment & Savings

These are both automatic payments. I adjusted both this month to increase them! Yay! I want to keep both at a base of $250/mo. Then if I can afford more each month, I will put that towards paying off the loan. The current balance of my student loan is $16K so I’m still looking at a few more years with it, even at this schedule. And although I hate thinking about that, at least I now have a plan in place. The waiting part is really the hardest.

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13 Replies to “April Monthly Spending in NYC 2014”

  1. I’m jealous! I want to go see NPH in Hedwig badly!! I might have to convince Z to make a trip to NYC just so I have an excuse to go. :)

  2. Lucky! I went to see Hedwig in Toronto a few weeks ago. Great script and love how they stage it with its small cast. Now I am curious who the other 4 bands are in your top 5?

    1. Oh man, I shouldn’t have said anything! Well, Pixies is definitely in there. Then an instrumental band, either This Will Destroy Your or Explosions in the Sky. Built To Spill. And I’ll have to think about the last one. Although Say Anything, is right up there, too!

    1. Thanks! It helps to really focus on one spending category. Plus, I was finally able to get into a routine of bringing lunches every day. Having something that wasn’t leftovers was helpful for the nights that I just didn’t feel like cooking.

    1. Exactly! Plus, like taxes, it’s money that you have already spent. So it’s not really extra money at all. It just makes things a bit more complicated to figure out. However, a good problem to have because I’m really liking the reimbursements!

  3. While checking your different heads of spending, it reminded me that of mine. I’ve a similar spending pattern, just like you. Unlike you I don’t owe anything on student loan but surely paying on mortgage, which is a fixed one and I’m paying it off now. I maintain a fund specifically dedicated for travel. Though I only travel once a year and that’s too during November or December, I make it sure that I save enough for the travel from my weekly income. In the list of your expenditure only one thing caught my attention and that is the 47% of income going to rent. If that is the case isn’t it not prudent to buy a house and pay the mortgage? Correct me if my suggestion is wrong.

    1. Having a separate fund for things like travel or entertainment is a great idea! This way it is sanctioned spending and you don’t have to feel guilty for going into your “emergency fund” for it. As far as owning a place goes, the nyc market is pretty overpriced. And I’m not at a point in my life where I’m ready to settle down like that. I’m getting closer but for now I am okay with the renting situation.

  4. Hello!

    I have a quick question for you, could you email me when you have a chance? Thanks! –Heather

    heather(dot)vonstjames@gmail(dot)com

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