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No spend challenge--how long can I last?

April 7th, 2016 at 02:28 am

I had a bunch of bills come in earlier this month. Nothing new, but it depleted my funds quickly and now they are quite low. So I've decided to set a no spend challenge for myself and build my cash cushion back up. I haven't set a time limit for myself, as I want to go as long as I possibly can without spending any unnecessary money. Has anyone done this before? How long did you last?

I do have a few tricks up my sleeve to help me out in this challenge. One of them is I have quite a large grocery stockpile in my pantry and my freezer, and it needs to be used up. Another thing that will help is I've done something similar in the past, not spending for a single pay period. (That wouldn't work this time as I get paid weekly. When I did it before I was working somewhere else and got paid every two weeks, so I really had to stretch my dollars until they screamed for mercy. LOL)

4 Responses to “No spend challenge--how long can I last?”

  1. LuckyRobin Says:

    I've made it about a month with minimal spending before. Right now I'm doing an eat from the pantry challenge to cut way back on grocery spending this month.

  2. VS_ozgirl Says:

    I'm currently spending very little because I'm saving for a holiday and my husband got a lower paycheque this month (mine's the same) so we're squeezed a bit tight. You have groceries you can use so your food bill will be a bit lower. My thing I am doing is planning my spending. Pick a few things you would like to make your life comfortable and make them your treats for the week. And make them the only things you buy. Because you've given yourself treats you won't feel like you're going without. For example: my treats are alcohol $15, 2 DVDs $7 and I want to make a dessert on Saturday night (hopefully not more than $10). All other things are required purchases (groceries, haircut, going to a birthday lunch). Any other treats/activities must be free. Good luck!

  3. creditcardfree Says:

    Read my blog entries from February. We did a whole month! Good plan to do the best you can.

  4. snafu Says:

    We did a major 'line item only' spend that began right after the holidays for the period January to March 30 for spending items we can control to some extent. Past experience has taught there is an exchange of time for money to hold down costs. Meals were planned, initially based on items already in pantry and freezer, watched for store loss leaders. Target spend going forward @ $ 300. each month. Most foods were those around the perimeter of the store.

    Transportation costs were limited to no more than one fill-up - top up each week. The pump price varied widely with savings re-directed. Trips were planed for best routes, adjusted times and planned errands. Fell off track repeatedly on that challenge,

    Spending was limited to items on an ongoing list that trapped me somewhat. DH planned to buy a wall hung TV Black Friday but didn't like what he saw...found one for a better price; bought/charged but sum had been set aside 2015... DH goes on a trip with buddies every March. He had money left over from a previous trip and sums spent on entertainment will show up on his April CC. I was able to coordinate with a promise to dog sit for friends. They supplied food so that $ 100. planned expense will be re-directed to DH's costs.

    Other than grocery and pharmacy, did not go to mall or visit stores. I kept really busy with projects. April is our most expensive month with annual homeowner and car insurance due as well as major income tax payments for both DH and I. Of course 'Murphy' showed up and I chose to give DS #1 a substantial gift to pay for a course that will likely advance his career. There is a possibility the firm will reimburse tuition if he finishes in the top 5.

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