Last week, I had officially been in NYC for an entire month. Since it's now May, I am going to try to get my budget back on track...keyword is TRY because I've had such an influx of cash recently from my first two paychecks earning a higher salary to selling my car to a gift from my parents for their tax purposes. Here was my April spending breakdown. Keep in mind that this is an expensive city and I also wanted to let myself have as much fun as possible!
- Rent: $1,100
This included utilities, internet and cable at the one-month sublet.
- Metrocard: $104
Unlimited monthly. Starting in May this is pre-tax through work!
- Cell: $30
Still on my parents' plan, I pay for the data portion of my iPhone.
- Groceries: $92.73
WOW...I can't believe how much I spent on groceries! Mostly breakfast foods, a few trips to Trader Joe's and Whole Foods for quick dinner meals and snacks. Groceries are expensive here!
- Restaurants: $380.90
I expected this to be high. I ate out for almost every single meal except breakfast during the week. This includes Starbucks/Dunkin Donuts stops, lots of meals with old/new friends, trying a lot of food trucks...and some even had leftovers that would last me 2 additional meals!
- Alcohol: $191.63
I knew this was going to be high, too! My close friends in the city are solid weekend drinkers and I spent two weekends with them. I also bought three bottles of wine (one as a thank-you gift) and there was one week I went out for drinks four days in a row! It's been worth it for my social life, though. :)
- Miscellaneous: $99.27
Everything else. Taxis, quite a few toiletries, indoor rock climbing, a case for my iPhone, a trip to Target, flowers and laundry.
- Savings: $600
Regular $200/month to my Roth IRA and then I sent $200 to my Travel Fund and $200 to my Gift Fund. It feels good to increase my savings amounts! (I'm also contributing 4% to get the 4% match on my new employer's Roth 401k, but that gets taken out of my paycheck before I see it.)
So even with all my out-of-control spending, I still managed to save money this month AND I have a few hundred dollars leftover! This was due to the fact that I got paid for 5 weeks of work instead of 4 since I started on March 28 (I get paid bi-monthly now) so my first paycheck included a week's worth of retro-pay. Side note: I did do a lot of shopping as well, to the tune of $313. All of that came from my remaining bonus money from my old job and some of the money I got from selling my car instead of out of my regular budget since I generally don't shop much!
Still, this feels amazing. I'm ready for May to be a little less crazy with spending...but hey, if I can afford a bit of lifestyle inflation in a pricier city, why not?! As long as I continue to budget and save consistently. :)