2014 Clothing: $103.05

Jan 8, 2015 by

worn corduroys

Would you wear these?

Ms. Money Counselor and I just wrapped up our annual Summit Meeting. One of several items on the agenda is always to review our spending during the just completed calendar year. We use iBank to track our spending in about fifty different categories ranging from Alcohol (the drinking kind) to Yard Maintenance.

Our Biggest Expenses

Not counting taxes, the category we spent the most on in 2014 was Vacation: $7,953! This figure includes travel, lodging, and meals. That’s quite a lot (I think), but well worth it in my mind. I hope to spend at least as much in 2015. We can afford it, and we deserve to have some fun!

Our next biggest 2014 expense, at $4,876, was Health. Included here are our insurance premiums, prescription co-pays and vitamins, gym memberships, and about $818 in uninsured healthcare. If you can’t believe how little this is, remember we live in Canada! As I described in “Our Health Cost Savings”, I roughly estimate that we saved about $81,000 in healthcare costs during the five years after our 2009 move to beautiful British Columbia. (That’ll pay for some excellent vacations!)

Our third largest 2014 expense: groceries, at $4,109. Since I adopted a whole food / plant-based diet in August 2012, our grocery bill went up because very little restaurant food meets my requirements for what I eat. I cook 99% of what I eat (which Ms. Money Counselor also usually enjoys), so our eating out cost has dropped quite a bit. Also I believe Ms. Money Counselor is aiming to open her own food market based on the inventory she’s accumulated in our house. 🙂

My Clothing Expense

With that prelude, here’s what I really wanted to get to: for all of 2014, I spent only $103.03 on clothing! I bought one pair of hiking shoes at REI ($81.76), and one white dress shirt at Costco ($21.27). I generally don’t spend much on clothing, but 2014’s outlay plumbed new depths. Until I generated the 2014 spending report from iBank for our Summit Meeting, I hadn’t realized how little I spent.

Naturally I had to crow about this during our Summit Meeting. But Ms. Money Counselor—always quick to help me keep my ego in check—offered this calm comment: “No you didn’t spend much, and it shows.” Ouch!

Do I Need New Clothes?

I doubt you’d sit still for a digital fashion show of my wardrobe. But see the photo that accompanies this post? That’s a shot of an actual pair of pants I wear regularly in the cooler weather months. They’re corduroys, if you can’t tell. And yes those light areas on the knees are worn away cords. I don’t spend a lot of time crawling around on my knees, so why those areas wore faster than the pants as a whole, I’ve no idea. Otherwise the pants are perfectly fine (in my opinion).

As I said, I wear these pants regularly. In public. And when I do, Ms. Money Counselor invariably suggests that it might be time to replace these pants. This has been going for, oh, I don’t know, two or three years now?

Here’s my (always unspoken) reaction: The pants are comfortable, warm, and cover all the body parts they’re supposed to cover. With respect to the worn areas, hey, from what I see on television commercials, consumers pay a big premium for “distressed” clothing these days! There are brand new pants on the shelves right now in the stores where all the cool people shop with the knees actually pre-torn. And people evidently pay a price for this damaged merchandise that I’d never pay for a pair of pants!

That said, I concede my wardrobe probably does need upgrading. A few items are long past their useful life, and a lot of my stuff no longer fits after I lost ~20 pounds when I started the whole food / plant-based diet about 2-1/2 years ago.

I’ll Spend More on Clothes in 2015

I don’t do resolutions, but I think I will plan to splurge in 2015 and spend, I don’t know, maybe $500 on clothing. I already know I need a new pair of gloves because I lost one glove today of the only set I own. I think I’m good on outerwear, but I can see getting a few new shirts and a couple pair of pants.

But I’m keeping the corduroys. 🙂

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  • squirrelers

    Barely over $100 in a year for clothing? That’s something to be proud of, from one money-conscious person to another! I probably spent $400 or so, which is likely my lowest ever. Or, at least in 20 years 🙂
    Now, that isn’t sustainable, the $100 per year amount that is. What’s actually more impressive is your spending on food/groceries. Around $4,100 for the year, for a healthy diet, is pretty good all things considered. That seems sustainable and smart.

    • You’re right, $100 isn’t sustainable, unless one shops strictly at Goodwill (which gives me the willies when it comes to clothing). My wardrobe is getting a bit thin–literally and figuratively.

      Thanks for the grocery comment. I agree: spending extra on quality food will pay off both financially (lower healthcare cost) and in terms of quality of life.

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