For the past week, I’ve lacked both the time and motivation to blog about personal finance – because I’ve been spending all my time and money shopping.
At least, that’s what it feels like. Moving to 3,000 miles away and setting up house required much more money than I had previously thought. Even though my preferences on furnishings and housewares bounce between the cheapest and the very cheap, total expenses added up to several hundred dollars…. Unfortunately, I am still not done.
My expenses to date:
- BEDROOM: $400 on mattress & bedframe (plus, I still need a desk and a chair)
- KITCHEN: $100 on cookware, utensils, spices, cleaning supplies, etc. Our beautiful, brand-new kitchen was completely empty… and you don’t realize how much stuff you need for a functional kitchen (salt, anyone?) until you have to start from scratch.
- FITNESS: $21 on yoga mat and dumbbells
- CLOSET: $37 on shoe rack and hangers
- BATHROOM: $40 on bath towels, hand towels, and bath mat
- LIVING/DINING: $60 on my share of the dining table & chairs
I followed the usual advice for keeping costs down – buy used from Craigslist, check out discount retailers such as Ross or TJ Maxx, look for free stuff when you can – to the best of my ability. But even $5 or $10 items add up quickly when I have to buy 10 or 20 of them. Many of these items I had back at home and had to leave with CB or sell because it simply wouldn’t make sense to ship.
For example… a trash can. It’s not expensive, but it’s something you NEED to have. I picked up a $7 can at Target, even though I had 3 trash cans from Target back home (do trash cans EVER break?). Or, how about drinking glasses. A package of 12 tumblers cost $9. Certainly not expensive by any means, but that’s still $9 that I wouldn’t have to pay if I had the glasses I did back home. Now multiply that $7 or $9 by 20, and weep. I call it “budget death by a thousand cuts.”
If I were to live alone, I would have spent even more because there wouldn’t be roommates to split the costs with. So that is something to be grateful for. Once the house-furnishing process is done, however, my wallet will breath a big sigh of relief. It’s gotten so bad that I do not want to look at my credit card statements, at all.
(Speaking of… when I decided to live with roommates, I wanted to save some money and hopefully make new friends. Well, I think I really hit the roommate lotto. My two roommates are amazing. A new friend came over to the house tonight for dinner, and he remarked on our “chemistry” – he couldn’t believe that we’ve only known each other for a couple of days. We’ve never met in person before we moved in, but somehow, there were a lot of friendship sparks going on).