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Thursday, May 6

My Frugal Miser - April Expenses: $3,509

This is only the second month I have highlighted my expenses, so expect some tweaking for the next few months. For April I am adding a new category to more accurately reflect my vehicle expenses: depreciation. Each month I will log the number of miles I drove, multiply that by $.0867 (the cost per mile I attribute to vehicle depreciation), and deduct that from the value of my car in Quicken.

April Expenses

$893 Auto ($12 for service, $314 for fuel, $542 Depreciation (4/30/10 odometer is 18,860)
$0 Clothing
$120 Food (both groceries and eating out)
$156 Entertainment (movies, gambling, alcohol)
$0 Home Repair
$291 Household (pest control, fire dues, cleaning supplies, etc.)
$107 Health Insurance
$58 Medical
$10 Vacation (terrorism fee for flights to Tampa... used a reward voucher)
$252 Interest on Debt (not including Mortgage Interest)
$20 Miscellaneous (proof that small teeny tiny expenses really do add up)
$449 Mortgage Interest (primary residence)
$837 Mortgage Interest (rental properties)
$40 Personal Care (Weight Watchers)
$276 Utilities

Total April Expenses : $3,509


  • The household category was again higher than normal. I bought a lot of office supplies at Office Depot during their "Free After Rewards" promotion. The rebate is actually a gift card, not a check, so this is a real expense. I justified this because I've been putting off a couple of purchases that I will now be able to buy with this gift card. I will need a new scanner, digital camera and GPS unit soon. I'm trying to squeeze the last bit of life out of those things but inevitably they will need to be replaced.
  • I separated my mortgage interest by personal residence versus rental properties. I think this is an important distinction: the personal residence interest is an expense I should exercise control over moving forward when looking at ways to be frugal; the other is an expense that generates income.
  • I spent over $300 in gas - and that's after the reimbursements I receive from mystery shopping. I'm not too worried about this - almost 100% of my driving is to generate income and I generally run errands en route to shops. I do very little personal driving.

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