My husband and I desperately want to buy a house.
Each month, we are spending $1300 in rent. While that’s considered a steal in our area (Aspen is nearby, and we suffer the consequences of living in the same valley as an elite resort town), we’d rather be putting that money directly into something that’s ours, instead of into our landlords’ pockets (despite how lovely they are).
Additionally, I want a dog. Honestly, I want a dog more than I want a house. However, with where we live and Colorado’s current rental landscape, you can’t have one without the other. Most rentals do not allow pets (including ours), and for very logical reasons, especially from a financial perspective.
So, to meet our house goal, we are saving our money. We are automatically transferring money from our checking account into our savings account each month, which then accrues interest. We transfer about 15 percent of our earnings, which seems like a reasonable chunk.
Additionally, we decided to embark on a challenge of sorts.
My husband, the finance nerd and frugal fanantic, suggested that we add more to our savings account than usual this month, taking our checking account down to an even number. This way, it would be very easy to track how much money we spend. He mostly wanted to see if we could go this month without spending more than a thousand dollars.
I agreed. The challenge is on!
This $1000 does not include our rent, utilities (energy, internet), and loans (which include a car payment and two separate student loan bills each month). If it did, we’d lose before crossing the starting line. Rent alone is over the limit and we pay over $900 towards our loans a month.
The limit does, however, include other necessities, like food costs—including groceries and eating out, plus gas.
Other expenses come up too; we are also traveling quite a bit this month and will have to spend money on a wedding gift, lodging, and whatever social engagements pop up during a celebratory weekend.
Mind you, we are frugal people. Our most frivolous expenses tend to be the monthly Starbucks chai or a Purple Carrot subscription every once in a long while.
Can we do it?
I say yes. I’ll keep you updated.
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