About a month ago, The Architect and I sat down and consulted Quicken as to where our money leaks were.
We're not really hurting for money, but we are trying to make a concentrated effort to save as much money as possible to move out West and have a farm of our own.
What we found:
-Most work days, I would buy lunch for myself - $8 a day three or four days a week. $1,100 per year.
-The Architect would get coffee and a snack pretty much every morning. $8-$10 per day, five days a week. $2340 per year (!!!!!!).
-I had acrylic nails, and though I should have gotten them done every two weeks, I'd push it out to three, and that was $45 a visit. So that's about $800 per year.
I've finally pulled off all my acrylic nails now that they've grown out. My girly vanity is having a hard time with this. I'll still splurge on manicures once or twice a month, but those are only $10.
We've started setting the coffee maker every night, so we can fill our travel mugs in the morning. Even with the expensive stuff we buy, it's cheaper than buying a cup at a drive through.
I've been bringing a Lean Cuisine to work for lunch every day. And not only does that save me $5 a day, it saves me some... oh....
MOTHER OF GOD, I'd never calculated out just HOW many calories and fat grams were in my near-daily beloved Chick-Fil-A meals.
*ahem* Sorry. I was a little shocked there. As I was saying, it also saves me THIRTY GRAMS OF FAT and SIX HUNDRED calories. Hrm. No wonder I've lost a couple of pounds... Oops.
We still occasionally go out to dinner, but we've patched that leak a long time ago, since I enjoy cooking so much. I'll cook almost every night of the week.
I think Quicken is a fabulous program. You can plainly see where your money is going, and, with their monthly graphs, you can see how spending $200 tomorrow can really put you in the red two months from now.
But since the older versions work pretty much as well without the big price tag (we're still using a 2001 version), you can save yourself some money by buying a slightly outdated version:
Quicken 2008 Home & Business [OLD VERSION]
I do urge everyone to sit down and see where the "leaks" are and patch them up if you're willing. A few dollars here and there really adds up to a good bit.
We're already up a few dollars, and I'm down a few pounds.