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to spend £35 on extras when we are trying to save money/pay off debt

(31 Posts)
lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 00:10:17

So far this month I have spent about £35 this does not include food or groceries. I spent £10 on a present for a close friend, £10 taking dd on an outing the rest was on bits and pieces like snacks when out, a cake for friends at work etc. We are trying to be very careful with money and save up for Christmas and pay off debts, but i find it hard to not spend anything. The £15 i spent on random bits just disappeared so easily.
My dh thinks we should only buy what is on the shopping list when we do the main shop and maybe take dd on outings/buy presents but definately no cake for work etc. Then he thinks we can go shopping in town say twice a month and buy anything we need plus maybe have lunch and this way we should stay in budget. I do think this sounds R but i find it very hard to stick to. I like popping in the local shop sometimes just to get out of the house. Also i guess this is not my plan and although i did agree to it, i don't like being told what to do.
We had a bit of a row about this earlier as you may have guessed but aibu and if i am how do i stick to a lower spend limit.

Bogeyface Thu 21-Nov-13 00:14:16

Well I would suggest that going into town and buying whatever you need and then eating out isnt good either! Lunch out will cost 4X what it would cost to eat at home and thats not counting whether "whatever we need" would be cheaper on t'internet.

And £35 a month spends isnt that much. So it seems that he wants to do budgeting on his terms, which is actually more expensive than yours!

Have you added up these lunches? How much do they cost V your £35?

lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 00:17:43

I'm not saying I wouldn't like to have lunch out. We would probably spend about £20 on lunch just in a cafe or something.

Littleredsquirrel Thu 21-Nov-13 00:18:00

just don't go into town. works for us. that way you're not tempted to spend on things you don't need. the internet is great for browsing but then walking away. if you really need it you can come back to it on the internet and find it at the best price.

greenbananas Thu 21-Nov-13 00:21:11

I feel your pain!

Only you can decide if the £35 is reasonable or not. We don't know exactly what your budget is!

I think buying presents for close friends is important, and that days out for the children is worth a lot of skimping on other things.

Life can be so joyless when we can't even afford bus fare when it's raining.

You have to decide what your priorities are (assuming that you are able to prioritise anything after the basic bills).

Good luck for Christmas. .. grin

Bogeyface Thu 21-Nov-13 00:24:38

So lunch out twice a month at £20 a time is ok, but your £35 isnt because it isnt important to him?

I think you need to suggest a different strategy. You both get £X per month as personal "sod it" money. Say, £30. What you spend that on is non negotiable, so if he wants lunch out then thats fine, but it comes out of his £30. If you want to buy cake for work then that comes out of yours and if you agree to share the cost of a night out then thats also fine. But once its gone, its gone. At the moment it seems that your limited resources are being controlled by one person and that isnt fair.

lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 00:28:39

In one way we can afford £35 but at the same time this is money that could be saved or used to pay off debts. We do try to allow a little money for a few fun things while we are saving but obviously we could save more if we didn't.

Bogeyface Thu 21-Nov-13 00:33:23

I would say again that you need to agree equal personal money. Even if it is £10 a month, it should be money that neither of you needs to justify spending. Agree an amount that will pay off the debts, an amount for savings and an amount for you each to do what you want with.

Bogeyface Thu 21-Nov-13 00:34:12

You could also save the lunch out money, but you dont because he wants to have lunch out and he can justify it in his head. That isnt fair.

lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 00:49:54

I have thought about this bogeyface but I don't want to get moaned at for going over my limit. Dh is good at low spends he probably spends £3 a week on himself.

Bogeyface Thu 21-Nov-13 00:53:22

But he doesnt!

He "suggests" that you spend money on lunches etc and because you say yes, that counts as joint spends, except it isnt because if he didnt suggest it then you wouldnt either!

He makes it out that you are spending your money and that you are spending his money! In fact, he is spending more money than you but he is just clever at making you feel bad about spending anything

Bogeyface Thu 21-Nov-13 00:54:16

Sorry "but he doesnt!" was in response to you saying that he spends £3 a week on himself.

tanukiton Thu 21-Nov-13 05:34:06

agree with bogeyface. Split it but take into account spends on your dd.

CrohnicallyTired Thu 21-Nov-13 07:12:13

DH and I take out x amount of money in cash at the start of the month. It varies according to what bills we have to pay, how much DH has been paid, but we agree a figure and both get the same. That is ours to spend as we wish, but when it's gone, it's gone. If we buy anything like a takeaway, we pay half each. If we go out for the day, Dd gets a packed lunch (she's only 1) and I buy a meal deal from somewhere and we eat on a bench- cost £3-4 instead of £20.

CrohnicallyTired Thu 21-Nov-13 07:13:42

Spends on DD, it varies, if we're out and I spot something and buy it on the spur of the moment, that's my choice and it comes out of my money. If we go out on an actual outing, or she actually needs something like shoes, that's a joint expense.

hellokittymania Thu 21-Nov-13 07:33:42

In your area, are there fun things to do for free? Also are ther any charity coffee mornings? I walked into Barclays one morning and you could have coffee and muffins if you gave a pound.
Don't take a lot of money if you go out.

lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 08:08:25

we are in a nice area for walks so that but dd is not a keen walker and doesn't like it if weather is bad etc. So this is more limited in winter. Other than that there are not that many free things to do round here.

redskyatnight Thu 21-Nov-13 09:02:54

Well if you are finding it hard to stick to, then you need to agree something different with DH that works with your budget. I'm not seeing anything in your post that suggests he won't be amenable to this. How much does he spend on "extras" in a month?

On the flip side, it doesn't sound like all your spends were really that essential - certainly could do a free or cheap trip out with DD (that she'd probably enjoyed as much), take snacks rather than buying (this sort of thing costs a fortune while out).

Have you looked at the DebtFree Wannabe section on MSE? Some good advice/ support on there?

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 21-Nov-13 09:18:47

What sort of debt do you have?

lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 10:07:06

Its our credit card we are trying to pay off we also have a car loan but that is budgeted for. The problem is we keep getting big bills, like for car repair and this means we are back to square one with the credit card debt.
Our income is about medium dh has ft job in a warehouse and I have pt job only 15 hrs I would like a bit more but this job is flexible hrs that fits in with dds school really well. Dh is doing an extra 12hrs a week overtime at the moment to try and get a bit more to pay off cards and he is finding it hard going.

specialsubject Thu 21-Nov-13 10:09:49

find something else to do when you want to get out of the house. A walk, a trip to the library, a hobby.

and if money is tight FORGET CHRISTMAS. You do not need sparkly tat. You do not need to spend a fortune on tat for everyone. Stop all presents for adults and if your child is young, a tenner will keep them happy. Or nothing, they don't really know about Xmas.

lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 10:14:47

Its hard for me to say how much dh spends as I hate the idea of checking up on what he spends, but I know he spends little on himself I think about £3 a week on newspaper a lottery ticket and maybe a chocolate bar or something. He sometimes buys a book or magazine if we go in town but not always.

lifecolour Thu 21-Nov-13 10:16:31

I'm sorry to say dd does know about Xmas! She is 8. We have spent about 100 on her in the past.

Bumblequeen Thu 21-Nov-13 10:17:17

As other posters have suggested, allow yourselves an equal amount of money each month to spend on whatever you please.

Dh and I do this. It is by no means a large amount of money but it is all mine.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 21-Nov-13 10:21:08

I don't think £35 a month is much given your circumstances. However, I can see why your DH gets a bit annoyed if he is the one doing the overtime... but does he 'care' about the credit cards more than you do? I don't think either of you are right or wrong, I think you both just see things a bit differently and need to talk. You need to talk to him instead of 'agreeing' with him about how to handle it, then resenting him.

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