I first heard about no-spend month from my dear coworker. I was surprised when she declined lunch out with the girls. When I asked her about it, she explained that she and her husband were giving up dining and coffee out for a month. They then planned to donate the money that they saved. We foodie urbanites could really save a LOT by taking a break from eating out. Such a great idea! She is a woman I look up to, but of course I never did anything to follow her example at that time.
When I recently read about No Spend Month Small Notebook style we were inspired to give it a try to bring our current spending more in line with our new one-income status. January 2012 will be No Spend Month in our household. It seems like a good detox after the consumer-centric holiday season.
Here are the rules (adapted from Rachel's):
Take a look at your average grocery budget, and make everything else fit into it. This includes groceries, gas, household items, dining, entertainment, and yes coffee! We usually spend about $500 a month on groceries, so that will be our budget for the month. Of course, buying less stuff will help us be more green and more resourceful as well. The goal is to make us really think about what we buy and where our money goes. For this we'll assume that bills such as mortgage, utilities, insurance, and health care are static. However, it's my goal to take this month to review all of our accounts to see if we can save some money on this regular bills as well.
Are you going to try No Spend Month too?