We got off to pretty crazy start for the new year for our expenses. We had some
spending for new tires for our Prius C and higher than usual restaurant expenses.
If you haven’t seen my past expense chronicles you can look at them here.
This is a monthly check up of my expenses and it is broken up into categories. Few things to note:
- We are a one car family so our gas and car insurance charges are all for our Toyota Prius C
- We both drive to work at different times of the day which is why we are able to own just one car and eliminate monthly public transit costs. And fortunately both of our parking spaces are free which eliminates parking costs.
- I do have complimentary breakfast and lunch at my work. If the food is really good that day I usually take a box to go for dinner. But on some occasions I bring my own lunch if I don’t feel like eating the food from work
- We mainly use credit cards for our purchases and pay it in full each month.
Here is our breakdown from the first month of 2018
|Car Insurance||$ 85.73|
|Restaurants/Fast Food||$ 70.90|
|Retail Shopping||$ 125.73|
|Mobile Phone||$ 85.00|
|Service Check for Prius||$ 306.81|
|New Tires for Prius||$ 492.57|
|Eye Appointment Co-Payment||$ 10.00|
|Total Expenses||$ 2,554.55|
Here is a breakdown of each category:
Mobile Phone: $85.00
These four categories are fixed costs for every month (our gas averages $40 a month). If you want a breakdown of these categories you can check out my July Expense Report
Electricity – $30.37
Another cold month here in the Bay Area, which meant more usage of our space heater. At least our bill was a bit lower than last month.
Car Insurance – $85.73
I changed our deductibles from $500 to $1000 for both collision and comprehensive. That lowered about our base rate and our charge-per-mile rate a bit. So hopefully we can get to the lower $80s for our monthly insurance
Groceries – 257.96
Bought some lobster ravioli on a few occasions at Costco along with our usual items like milk, eggs, fruits and veggies.
Car Service Checkup – $306.81
It was our annual checkup for the Prius. When we first bought it in 2014, Toyota granted us complimentary maintenance for the first two years which was great. But now last year and this past month we had to pay out of pocket for the maintenance. Last year I had to pay around $130 and initially they were going to charge me over $600 over changing the oil, fluids, and filters, rotating the tires, and adjusted the brakes. Luckily I got a coupon from the dealership a month before for a charge of close to $300 for the checkup. That’s still lots to shell out for a service checkup. I may have to go to an independent one next time and it will probably be way less than $300. Or I may have to do it myself which will cost even less. I used to change oil and filers for my old car, a 2000 Honda Civic, so I have some experience doing some handy work on cars.
Unfortunately, they found that our tires were treading pretty low and could go out at any point. The warranty for the tires was around 30K miles and we had just drove over that amount so it was definitely for some new ones. They recommended to buy new tires for them for an additional $700. I passed up on their offer and went to Costco the next day.
New Tires for Prius – $492.57
As soon as I left the Toyota service center, I researched on where to get new tires at a good price. After looking through several tire shops, Costco had pretty good prices and went there the following day. Got some Bridgestone Ecopia for $80 each. That with all the additional charges like discarding of the old tires, labor for installing the new ones, and taxes came out to be close to $500. Hey it’s better than having it done by Toyota. I went there about an hour after it opened and dropped it off for the rest of the morning. Fortunately the Costco is about a 20 minute walk to my work so I was able to head thereafter and pick it up during my lunch break.
Retail Shopping – $125.73
So we bought some movie tickets as a late Xmas gift for my brother-in-law (Mother with Cents brother) and his wife (our sister-in-law) since they were in Asia during the holidays.
But the bigger story here is that we bought a couple of FitBits for Mother with Cents and my MIL from Kohls online for close to $200.
Right after placing the order, we got a standard email confirming it and stating they would ship it in a few days. A week passes by and still no status regarding the shipment of the FitBits. So I chatted with a Kohls rep online and informed me they would get on it and ship it immediately. A few days later receive the FitBits so good that we notified them…or so we thought. About a week after we received the FitBits, we got another package in the mail from Kohls, it was another pair of FitBits. I’m guessing that Kohls forgot to notify me that they ship out the first pair of FitBits and when the rep didn’t see any record of it they send out another pair of them. So now we got 4 of them for the price of 2. Not bad!! We took advantage of this by getting myself one and returning the other one. We got 3 FitBits for $100!!
Restaurants – $70.90
Our monthly stop at In N Out and some other places as well. We went to bakery called 85 degrees and they had various amounts of bread. Apparently this place is pretty popular because it took about a ten minute wait to buy these breads. But first we had to select which type of breads we wanted and since it was self-serviced, we picked out around five different types of bread. After picking them out, we stood in that long line. They are also popular with their various drink selection too. Everything came out to be $20 but that bread is pretty darn good.
With the recommendation from Cyn over at Saving with Sense, I bought a milk tea from the Boba Guys. I got jasmine milk tea, 75% sweet with almond jelly. Pretty good, may go there again soon.
I also went to Super Duper burger, popular local burger chain. This place is about a block away from my work for more than five years. I’ve been there once before but didn’t have a great reflection on how good their burgers were. After thinking about going there for almost a week, I convinced myself to go there and damn it was worth it. Super Duper has some pretty juicy burgers, maybe as good as In N out. But I don’t know if I can compare the two because the prices of Super Duper is twice as much as In N Out. I’ll comeback in six months to spend over $10 for a burger.
Vision Check-Up – $10
My first vision appointment since…well I believe when I was in grade school. My co-payment for a vision check is only $10 through Mother with Cents’ work so why not finally take advantage of it. Also, I thought it was about time that I have a check-up since I’m approaching my 40s and my eyes have been squinting a bit lately when driving at night. Turns out my eyes are a-ok! The optometrist did give me a prescription for glasses but said it was optional to get a pair since it will only slightly sharpen my vision at night but other than that, my vision is great. I’ll make this an annual trip to the optometrist