No Spend November

It's November 11th, 2016. A day that is an important date in history for three reasons: Veterans Day, Remembrance Day, and the end of my second week of No Spend November.

So far, I'd say it's going merely ok. I haven't done the best job, but I also didn't drive to the outlet mall an hour away and max out my credit card. You win some, you lose some.

I've had some unexpected expenses pop up that I wasn't accounting for. I got word my interview was finally scheduled…. and then I realized my professional wardrobe was lacking. So I did have to go to the mall (and had an allergic reaction to the blatant consumerism seeping into every square foot), but I made sure to hit up the cheaper stores. I ended up getting a blazer, a shirt, and shoes for less than $200. Impressive, considering the sticker prices were $270 before sales and coupons.

If I hadn't been doing this No Spend November month, my spending would be a LOT higher. There have been several days where I wanted to buy breakfast at work, but made it at home instead. Same thing with lunch. I'd estimate I haven't spent about $25 because of this. It doesn't sound like much, but that would be about $50 per month or $600 per year I'm not spending on food at work. It all adds up!


Date & AmountComments
1-Nov-16 $4.99Lunch
2-Nov-16 $0.00YAY!
3-Nov-16 $355.42Rent, Internet payment, and lunch.
4-Nov-16 $13.00Lunch
5-Nov-16 $17.64Movie and coffee social
6-Nov-16 $0Yay!
7-Nov-16 $187.30Interview outfit
8-Nov-16 $15.57Movie
9-Nov-16 $44.51Gas, lunch, and happy hour
10-Nov-16 $8.05Lunch
11-Nov-16 $3.18Breakfast
Total $651.29

Looking ahead to the next two weeks, I will be spending quite a bit. I have a whopping rent bill due, two movies to see, a video game to buy, groceries to buy, and driving for Thanksgiving to do. I probably won't hit my $2500 goal simply because my rent payment is bigger than I thought. (Thanks, apartment vultures.)

All of this also assumes I'm not moving this month. If I do end up getting this position, I will be moving in a hurry. This means finding a new place to live, a deposit for it, moving expenses, extra food costs, lots of driving, and cleaning fees for the current place. It will get pricey fast, especially since it's so last minute, but thankfully I should get money from my company to help lessen the impact on my budget.

I did have my interview yesterday. I think it went really well! Everyone at work was very impressed by my professional look, so buying that blazer was totally worth it. I will know by the end of next week (the 18th of Nov) if I've got the job.

Are you doing No Spend November? How is it going for you?

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23 thoughts on “No Spend November

  1. I’m not sure if you have one in your area, but I hit up Clothes Mentor for professional wear. It’s a consignment shop so the clothes are used, but they’re cheap and good brands like Calvin Klein. I think I spent $30 on my latest suit there.

    Also, are you buying the new Pokemon game?? It comes out next Friday and I am going nuts over it! I’ve been budgeting for that $40 since the summer just to make sure. 😉

    Good luck with the job! I hope you get it!!
    Mrs. Picky Pincher recently posted…Frugal Approaches to Junk MailMy Profile

    • It looks like there isn’t one in my area, but there is one in my hometown I could go to when I’m there for Thanksgiving.

      I am TOTALLY BUYING THE NEW POKEMON GAME AHHHHHH! SO hyped for it. I’m getting one on launch day, and the other from a relative for Christmas. I’ve been playing the demo and it’s so much fun!

  2. I’m so happy you finally got your interview. Only one week to go!

    I’m doing a no spend November, as my partner and I do every year, except we call it “Frugal Fun Sobrember” We don’t drink, don’t eat out, and don’t pay for anything except for necessities. I also put myself on a clear out the pantry challenge and am only allowing myself $50 (my partner gets another $50) to spend on groceries. So far, a third of the way through the month, I’ve only spent $13 and my partner $22. We can do this!!

    I’m a little interested in the comment you made.. ” Everyone at work was very impressed by my professional look, so buying that blazer was totally worth it.” Did you feel any other benefits from spending that money on the blazer or was it mainly co-workers being impressed?
    Vanessa recently posted…Frugal Fun Sobrember – Challenge!My Profile

    • You guys are killing it! Wow! Only $35 this month? So impressive! Do you count things like rent, utilities, and internet?

      To be honest, it was mainly coworkers being impressed. I feel like the fact I put in extra effort on my hair and did my makeup contributed to that just as much as the blazer. I’m glad I had the blazer because it helped me step into the role of professional interview. I felt very grown up and serious dressed like that. (Plus, I got a “WOW!” from one of my coworkers which really helped me feel good!)

      • Rent, phone and internet go at the end of the month so we haven’t paid them yet. No utilities (yay!), it’s all included in our $1100 rent! To be fair, my pantry has a lot of dry goods.. pasta, beans, spices.. but it’s challenging me to come up with new recipes.

        Well, hopefully it’ll pay off itself with you getting that job! I like to think of November as a time to challenge my preconceived notions of what I need or not, and find alternatives for different things until the month is over.. just to test it out. For example my partners birthday was last month and I got him a PS4 Pro. It arrived last week but we don’t have any games for it. Instead of breaking our rule we’re borrowing a game at a time from the library and it’s been working really well. We are also playing a lot of Batman haha.

  3. I’ve already failed so much at #NoSpendNovember.

    I ordered some hiking shoes, poles and a headlamp.

    I booked an AirBNB in Omaha for the Berkshire annual meeting in May. But then the host told me they might be moving so I guess I have to find somewhere else? 🙁

    I wrote my dad a $400 check to book me a hotel room at FinCon with his points. 😀

    Ugh, probably some of the most expensive lodging nights I will have next year, but still cheaper than booking with cash.
    TJ recently posted…TJ’s Investment Portfolio RevealedMy Profile

    • Right there with ya, bro. I don’t know if I’ll go to the Berkshire Hathaway meeting this year or not. I was super bored last year! Although the blogger meetup around the meeting was super fun. I’ll definitely see you at FinCon though!

      • Ha! Don’t forget Camp Florida Mustache! That one is coming up pretty quick.

        It’s unfortunate to hear that you found the annual meeting to be on the boring side. Steve from Steveonomics had mentioned that it was a cool bucket list item, but that he doesn’t see the need to do it again.

        I’m kinda worried about the overwhelming number of people (35,000 people went last year?) , but I know some other bloggers are going and doing that the smaller group hangout will probably help.
        TJ recently posted…TJ’s Investment Portfolio RevealedMy Profile

  4. Can’t wait to hear about the job! I would argue that a new suit has great ROI especially when a new job comes with a raise! My sister and I share a Tahari suit that was purchased for me as a gift when I first graduated college. (Whoever interviews dry cleans it and sends it to the other). When I wear it, I look good but more importantly I feel badass AF and the confidence comes across in interviews. Also, people judge what candidates wear in interviews and I have seen it first hand. My former boss made some comments when we’ve interviewed people in past about the quality of their clothes (if it looked like someone was wearing a used shirt for example – he commented that they must not have taken the interview seriously to not buy a new shirt). Some people probably find that outrageous but I’m going to play the game.
    Julie @ Millennial Boss recently posted…11 Reasons Why Moving West Changes You For the BetterMy Profile

  5. Yay for the job interview going well. The blazer was totally worth it if it made you feel confident and therefore helped you ace the interview.

    We’re not doing no spend November. We’re doing Spend Less November. It is going ok so far. I had a close call a few days ago when the camera on my phone suddenly started producing only blurry images (a disaster when you have a toddler in the house). I had just about resigned myself to needing to procure a new one when it started to get better. Hooray for self healing cameras (actually I think a bit of water got into the lens and may be slowly evaporating).
    Mrs. BITA recently posted…How to Be Wiser Than The Magi (giving the gift of a mind worm)My Profile

  6. Great news on the interview, Gwen! Sounds like the allergic reaction you suffered at the mall was worth it after all…

    We aren’t doing a no-spend November, but a very frugal one, as October was higher than I’d like. (We did go to the movie Arrival last night and it was really good – in case you’re looking for a good one). Almost each year, I try to do a no-spend January and I’m going all in this coming January! Hoping to start off the new year with a savings mindset.

  7. Looking forward to how the rest of the month turns out Gwen, and best of luck on the job! It’s definitely frustrating to deal with unexpected expenses. I had to buy new tires for my car last week, without any notice. $700 down the drain. I’ll have to make it up over the next month.

  8. I’m curious why you’re buying video games during No Spend November? surely this is one of those great examples of purchases that can be delayed (and hopefully means that when you do buy it, the price will have dropped)

    I’d say the same about the movies – but those don’t drop in price, they just disappear from the cinema and you have to find another way to watch them. Well, home is cheaper

    • The video games and movies are on my pre-approved purchases list. I knew they were coming out and I knew I’d want to see them, so I set money aside specifically for that. It might be more accurate to call it a low spend November since I am still spending money on wants and not needs. The movies and games could easily wait until December (minus Space Jam) but then I would just be delaying the spending and not cutting it out.

      • Cheers for replying 🙂

        I have a tendency to impulse spend on games. Since realising this I’ve taken on the habit of delaying the spend and more often than not I end up finding many other more rewarding ways of spending my time/money and not buying the shiny game.

        But I also have big titles I planned ahead for (Anything Kingdom Hearts!!) so when you put it that way it makes sense 🙂

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