In 2011 my total spending was 3% less than my 2010 spending. When you drill down to individual categories there are some important differences which point to opportunities I see to spend less in 2012.
Spending by Category: 2011 Vs. 2010
|Spending by Category: 2010 vs. 2011|
In 2012 I think it will be easy to further reduce my spending:
- Mortgage interest will drop @ $1,000 due to principal repayment.
- Interest expense will also drop for the same reason.
- Two of the larger categories are recreational: vacation and gambling. I plan to spend less on both this year.
- Spending on food increased by $539 this year. I averaged $6.45/day or $3.23/person in 2011. I spent $1.48/day ($0.74/person) more on food in 2011 versus 2010.
- Transitioning to a one car family saved us $2,353 in 2011 compared to 2010.
A couple notes:
- Mortgage interest includes interest I pay on investment properties in addition to my home. Most of the Interest Expense category is also related to rental properties. I don't mind expenses which are incurred in the pursuit of higher income.
- Since the amount I spend on taxes is almost completely out of my control I have chosen to exclude that category. In 2010 I received a very large refund from my 2009 taxes which would skew this report in a way that isn't an apples to apples comparison.