Welcome to Money Stories, where we ask New Zealanders to tell us how they spend their money over a seven-day period.
Today: A Self-employed Healthcare Associate who makes $112,713 per year spends some of his money on some fantastic cooking (and treats for his super cute dog...photo below).
Occupation: Healthcare Professional/Business Owner
Age: Early 30s
Location: Wellington, NZ
Salary: On paper, my salary is $112,713 pa before tax as of 31st March 2019
Paycheck Amount (Fortnightly): but I take out $2500 fortnightly from the business for personal use, the rest of the money stays in the business.
Debt: $226,948 mortgage on my own house
Mortgage: $350/week for me and $262.5/week for wife (she pays for mortgage on her own family home separate to mine)
Student Loans: None
Credit Card: $1710/month/person (average as per last 12 months). Credit card is shared with my wife. Paid off in full each month so as not to incur interest.
Internet: $73/month (included in credit card)
Car Fuel: $93/month (included in credit card, monthly average across last 12 months)
Bus Fee: $385/year (usually over $600 per year but bought an e-scooter last year in May)
Car Insurance: $501.76/year
Health Insurance: $381.68/year
Life, Disability, Income Protection Insurance: $147.37/month (included in credit card)
Utilities: $366.83/year gas (included in credit card), $786/year electricity (**not** included in credit card)
Personal Cell/Business Cell: $16/month for me and $19/month for my wife (both included in credit card)
Investments: $200/month into Smartshares USF and $50/week into Simplicity NZ Shares. I also contribute $29/week into my kiwisaver (this doesn’t automatically come out of my paycheck as I don’t pay myself like an employee). Wife also contributes the same amount into the same investment vehicles.
Expense tracking app: $89.98/year Pocketsmith. I use this to track both mine and my wife’s spendings.
Supporting Family: Wife contributes $60/week to help out a sibling studying overseas at the moment
Because of the lock down, my spending looks very boring. No shops are open and I take lunch to work every day. This actually has been somewhat good in terms of saving money as we are just about to go ahead for a kitchen renovation in my house.
Monday 4th May 2020 (Day 1)
No breakfast, cup of coffee made at home. I currently live with the in-laws as my house is about to undergo some renovation.
8:45am Drove to work as it was raining otherwise I would usually e-scooter to work or take the bus. Didn’t want to take the bus as I was running late. Couldn’t find any car park so had to pay for one. $26.50, claimed as a business expense.
11:28am $3.90 for some chocolate brownie at Mrs Higgins as a morning snack.
Lunch: leftovers from previous night. I’ve been particularly good during the lock-down in bringing leftovers for lunch (no shop open, so it kind of forces me to do this). I would usually only bring lunch to work maybe once to twice a week and buy lunch which cost around $13.90 each working day
Exercise: Been recently roped in by the wife to do this 30day exercise challenge via YouTube. 50min before dinner - free. Personally, I’ve never been much of a believer in gym memberships unless I was really looking to go into some sort of muscle building quest. In the past I’ve just been doing short tabata exercises via YouTube as well (albeit not as frequently as this YouTube programme) and sometimes a swimming session at the council pool on the weekend.
Dinner: Ate home-cooked meal cooked by the mother in law with grocery bought on the previous weekend.
Tuesday 5th May 2020 (Day 2)
Stove top coffee made again at home for breakfast. This time I managed to wake up early enough for the bus. No cost for bus ride during lock down.
Lunch: Leftovers again from previous night.
3:03pm $2.50 for some chocolate cookies again at Mrs Higgins.
Exercise: Rest Day
Dinner: Very lucky to have dinner cooked again by the mother in law. She’s an excellent cook. The current pattern seems to be she cooks for us during the weekdays and my wife and I cook for her during the weekend.
Wednesday 6th May 2020 (Day 3)
Breakfast: Coffee and a slice of crumpet.
E-scootered to work as it wasn’t raining.
Lunch: Left-overs from dinner last night
50min of the YouTube exercise!
Dinner: Asam Laksa noodles cooked by mother in law. It’s a fish-based noodle soup with fresh herbs and pineapples added.
Wife spends $3.80 bottled milk delivered from Eketahuna. This is a weekly initiative launched by all residents of the street.
Thursday 7th May 2020 (Day 4)
Breakfast: Asam Laksa from last night!
E-scootered to work.
11:04am: Started prescription service for Supreme Coffee Beans. 500g of beans delivered every 3 weeks. Previously I had to buy it from specific supermarkets which is a hassle. $25 every 3 weeks
Lunch: New world. Didn’t get to have left-overs as I had it for breakfast.
Cookie Time Cookie $2.69
Whittakers Chocolate 50g 41.99
Apple x 1 $1.30
Banana x1 $0.41
Mandarins x2 $1.69
Sambal Curry Meal $9.99
I didn’t eat all of it for lunch. Saved the Cookie Time and Mandarins for tomorrow’s lunch.
Home Cooked meal. Pork Belly.
Friday 8th May 2020 (Day 5)
Lunch: Leftover from dinner on Thursday night
Dinner: Chinese Vegetable and Steam Egg
Saturday 9th May 2020 (Day 6)
Breakfast: Shared a croissant and a pan au chocolat given by brother in law. Homebrewed coffee.
Weekly Grocery Shopping: Lockdown has forced us to become more organised so we only do one big shop at supermarkets per week. Mother in law tells us what she wants for ingredients and we will put it on the list. Below is a big list of what we bought. We bought some extras in preparation for mother’s day on Sunday. We might continue with this habit even after lock down.
Yan’s Supermarket - for asian vegetables and sauces
Tofu x 1 : $3.69
Sambal Chilli Sauce: $3.99
Logan in Syrup x 2: $10.38
Coconut Milk x 2: $3.38
Kai Cai Vegetable: $2.99
Tang Hao Vegetable: $3.99
Choi Sim Vegetable: $4.99
Kai Lan Vegetable: $3.99
Feijoas 2kg: $4.99
Total: $42.99 (Wife and I split grocery bill 50/50)
Pakn Save Petone - Chosen for its large range
Dog biscuit for our Shitzu named Buster (see picture below): $17.99
Cage free jumbo eggs 20: $9.99
Hamburger Buns 6pk: $3.29
Natures Goodness Granfree chikn duck dog food x4: $7.96
Peckish Rice Crackers: $1.79
Quality bakers Muffin Spicy fruit: $2.89
Facial Tissue 170s x2: $2.00
Vogel Bread: $3.99
Whittakers S/Salt Caramel 100g: $3.49
Bluff Salmon Fillet: $10.99
Rose Apple: $2.59 at 2.99/kg
Green Cabbage: $2.99
Capsicums Red x3: $6.87
Carrots 1.99/kg: $5.52
Cauliflower x1 : $3.49
Garlic x7: $5.99
Red Kumara 5.99/kg: $6.12
Limes 8.99/kg: $6.93
Pams Spinach 120g: $3.78
Pams Cherry Tomatoes 250g: $3.99
Nashi Pears 4.99/kg: $3.97
Persimmons 6.99/kg: $4.34
Spring onion x1: $1.99
Mesclun Salad: $4.99
BBQ rice cracker: $3.56
Filo Pastry: $5
Value Milk Lite 2L: $3.49
Pork Bones: $15
Pork Mince: $9.47
Pork Slices (4 packs): $30.64
Pancetta flat: $6.79
Prosciutto 80g: $7.99
Champagne leg ham: $4.67
Mozzarella di Bufala 125g: $7.99
Plum fruit paste 120g: $6.99
Olives Sicilian Style: $6.89
Thorndon New World - Needed lamb steaks and lamb shanks
Lamb Shank x 1: $8.62 (needed 4, they only had 1!!)
Lamb Steak x 2 packets: $26.99
Haeremai Korean Food shop - needed kimchi for Sat night dinner. Ended up buying some snacks and instant noodles too
Crab flavoured chips: $2.89
Spicy Korean Instant noodle: $8.50
Bints Chocolate Biscuit: $6.89
Cuttle fish chips: $2.49
BBQ flavoured chips: $1.99
After shopping at Haeremai my wife and I became a bit peckish so had a packet of chips we just bought then had some instant noodles when we got home before we started cooking for dinner.
Dinner: We miss going out to korean restaurant so we decided to make our own. I was responsible for cooking Bulgogi and wife was responsible for making Kimchi Pancake. I substituted beef for lamb as my mother in law doesn’t eat beef. It works just as well I think. Next time I would probably add less brown sugar as the nashi pear already makes it quite sweet.
Sunday 10th May 2020 (Day 7)
Woke up early to goto Schaffer’s New World to buy the rest of the lamb shanks I need for tonight’s dinner. Also got some other stuff while I was there:
Round Beans 15.99/kg: $3.93
Fresh Chilli x1: $1.28
Mint Punnet: $3.99
Lamb Shank x3: $20.11
After I came back it was straight to marinating the lamb shanks; Video and Recipe.
Brunch: wine, cheese, proscuitto, cherry tomatoes, basil, smoked salmon bought on Saturday.
We went for a walk in the afternoon around the park then afterwards was putting the lamb shanks into the oven!
Another 45min YouTube exercise and that ends my week.