Time to Balance the Budget!
On Wednesday 28th November, the car failed its MOT and proved to be an uneconomical repair. On Monday 3rd December, the car got scrapped. We have decided to attempt to do without a car in 2013, but we won't be without wheels.
We live in a rural location, we are not on a bus route and there are no local taxis. The main road is just over a mile from the house, so we can walk there and flag down the occasional bus - I think there are two per day. I've asked friends about lift-sharing and have registered with Royal Mail so I can pre-pay and print postage labels, then all I need to do is pop the mail into the box or hand it to the postman.
With what was saved on the final month's petrol, scrap money and refund of road tax from the car, it paid for two secondhand bikes. December 2012 was the first time I had cycled in 30 years! My 2013 challenge includes seeing how easy it is to manage without a car, despite living in a rural location, and keep the overall annual household budget below £4,000.00 while having frugal FUN!
My new challenge budget has been finalised! It reflects groceries, electricity, heating, telephone, Internet and TV for the household, but gift buying, clothes, mobile phone, postage, travel etc is my own only... housesharing means no joint-accounts, no joint family affairs and, if I want to blow the balance on a horse, the house or a foreign holiday, I'm free to do so. But I promise not to buy a horse!
The Finalised Challenge Budget for 2013
Groceries, Toiletries, Cleaning - £1,000
Electricity - £800
Coal - £200
Logs - £200
Other - £12 (firelighters, matches etc)
Mobile - £5
Telephone & Internet - £360
TV - £145.50
Footwear & Clothing - £50
Gifts - £100
Transport Costs - £75
Postage & Deliveries - £35
Home Insurance - £100
Household Pets - £60
Everything else - £857.50
TOTAL = £4,000.00
In a change of plan, I will not be deducting council tax or buildings insurance from my budget, so I've shared some of the extra money among the gifts, fuel and groceries categories, while leaving the remainder under the category of 'everything else'. Without a car to worry about, I'm feeling positively LOADED for 2013!