Well August isn't really over with, but I had time today to calculate my total expenses for this month. I decided to track my expenses as well as my net worth on a month to month basis so I can see how I'm spending my money and the growth of my net worth (that will come at the end of August, since I will get paid).
Total expenses came out to about $940 for this month. This figure is on the high side (considering practically no bills needed to be paid) because this weekend I went on a weekend vacation that ended up costing around $400. The vacation was definitely worth it though, since I had a great time (and some interesting moments) and it was relaxing.
If I take out the vacation then expenses would be $540 for the month. I think this is an okay figure, but I want to cut back on my lunch expense from work. They buy us lunch on Fridays, but I usually buy my own at least three out of the other four days. This adds up to about $20 a week. I think I should be able to reverse this situation by taking my lunch at least three days per week, eating out once, and then getting the free lunch. I think I should be able to lower my expenses by $80 or so.
On a side note: I do want to save money, but I also want to have some fun. So I'll spend money on things that I think are worth it (this means that even if I could afford a laptop this month, it will make no sense to buy it).
My August expenses came out to be about 38% of my take home pay. I'm saving the rest and still not paying rent since I haven't found an apartment yet (this is getting annoying by the way). My goal for saving (after expenses and the eventual rent cost) is to save about 40% of my take home pay ($1000/month). I think this is a high savings rate, but I also think I can accomplish this.