Apr 022012

I’ve noticed that many other financial bloggers like to challenge themselves to limit their number of days they spend money, for example, they may try to go for 5 no-spend days for a week to see if they can restrain their spending to only 2 days. Up until now, I have only planned for, and kept track of how much I spend, but never how often or how many days I spend, which I’m now quite curious about (゜゜)~ I don’t think no-spend days are super useful from an accounting perspective because if I don’t buy milk today I can always buy it tomorrow, along with anything else I might need for the week. But I think it teaches us to plan our spending more efficiently, like maybe grouping errands together to save time or gasoline. Lots of other bloggers say no spend days are very beneficial for their financial lives, so I’m going to give this thing a try too and see how it goes (゜o゜)

For the Month of April I challenge myself to 25 no-spend days.

I think the effectiveness of no-spend days depends on one’s discretionary expenses. If I don’t spend too much on toys, fast foods, and luxuries then most of my expenses are probably basic needs which I can’t do anything about and have to pay sooner or later anyway, like hydro (electricity) or groceries.  April has 30 days, so with 25 days of no spending, I still have 5 days remaining when I CAN spend money. This will be an interesting experience for me because I have never done this before. I’ve created a new table on the right side of this blog which I’ll try to update everyday (April’s 25 No Spend Days Challenge) 

Unfortunately today is only the 2nd day of the month and I have already used up 1 of my 5 days of spending. My mortgage and strata fees (HOA) are always due at the beginning of the month and since yesterday was a weekend, the mortgage and strata payments were automatically debited from my bank account today. This means I have 4 more days in April to spend in order to be successful with my challenge. I will need to plan my spending carefully so that I can combine multiple expenses on the same day, like groceries and loan repayments for example. Ok, I’ll give an update later this month (=^_^=)

Here is the mid month update
and here is the end of month conclusion

Random Useless Fact: For every $100 spent at a locally-owned business, $68 stays in the local economy compared to only $43 if spent at a national chain.

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28 Comments on "April No Spend Days – Begin"

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04/03/2012 4:55 am

Whoa! 25 !?! As I read I was thinking more like 10 or 15 but hey good for you. I’m currently trying something similar but in my case I guess it’s more “planned spending” I have a grocery list and only buy what’s on my list, no more crave buying. I also started doing big dinners to take left over for lunch or make sandwiches, boring I know but 10$ per meal per day hurts the pockets.

04/03/2012 9:22 pm

Nice going Ramon, planning how to spend will only lead to good things. I’m not sure how many no spend days would be a good number for me since this is my first time planning it, but looking at my previous spending history I average around 20. So I think if I actually do a little planning, I can bring it up to 25. My monthly expenses aren’t that many, but there could always be surprises (゜o゜)

Not Working
04/03/2012 5:12 am

Think 25 days is a bit too much, and if you count even the mortgage as a spending i don’t think you will do it.



04/03/2012 8:51 pm

Thanks, I’ll probably need a bit of luck to pull it off. I’ve never planned for no spend days before so I’m just going with 25 days because I don’t have a lot of monthly expenses.

04/03/2012 5:39 am

I think this is a great plan! I would LOVE to do 25 no spend days. I’m not even close to being able to do that, because I have to pay for parking daily, etc. But I would love to do that at the very least with my eating out for lunch.

04/03/2012 8:54 pm

I’m pretty fortunate to have a permanent parking spot at work, otherwise I would probably buy a monthly pass and take transit. Maybe you can plan for bring-your-own-lunch days instead.

04/19/2012 10:01 am

Great article, thank you again for writnig.

04/03/2012 7:13 am

I would argue no-spend days do very little if anything for you. Better way to do it would be to track unplanned spend days. Money is meant to flow… as idol money does nothing for you. Invest it and then it is working for you… How else would you be able to make money? and further to NW’s point – Is a mortgage payment not an investment and therefore, technically not a spend? I guess I will say best of luck as no spend days are a near impossibility owning a house and having kids 😉

04/03/2012 9:08 pm

Good point Phil. No spend days are pretty meaningless if it insulates one’s ability to interact with the economy. Calculating unplanned spend days is a much better way to find out about one’s spending habits. Or maybe even just keep track of the unplanned spending amounts so an actual dollar cost can be associated with spending. I certainly agree that deciding when (or when not) to spend is never a sure thing when you have a family, or even a wife, or even just a girlfriend. Since I’m currently single, this is probably the only chance I’ll have to experiment… Read more »

04/03/2012 3:35 pm

I’ve never tried to do no spend days before. I probably have 10-12 unplanned no spend days per month but I don’t think I could pull of 25. You’ll have to do some careful planning. Good luck I’m sure it will save you a ton of money.

04/03/2012 9:11 pm

I’m sure it will save me money as well, but probably not a lot. I’ll post my April bank statement after all this is over to show how I’ve planned the expenses.

04/03/2012 4:55 pm

I wouldn’t last 3 days dude. Good luck dude and more power to you!

04/03/2012 4:57 pm

Ha – Sorry about that. I just re-read my response. I should have proof read before I hit Submit.

04/03/2012 9:17 pm

I will probably exceed my limit as well. It’s only been 3 days so it’s hard to say for now. Good thing it’s only a month.

04/03/2012 6:54 pm

A good way to control change spending on coffee, choclete bar, newspaper, etc.

04/03/2012 9:36 pm

Great idea Zoey (^_^) I believe some people call that the latte factor, a phrase made popular by David Bach. It’s not easy to notice but the little expenses in life can really add up in the long run. To pass my challenge this month I really have to watch my spending, even the little ones.

04/03/2012 9:15 pm

Good luck with the 25 No-Spend Days! I think the challenge is usually with discretionary spending, and not with ALL spending, but I’ll definitely be following your progress!

BTW, I love that picture. :) Whenever you drop by my blog, that’s what I’m going to imagine in my head from now on. 😛

04/03/2012 9:32 pm

So that’s how you’re suppose to do it, discretionary spending only. Oh well ┐(‘~`;)┌. I’ll continue with what I’m currently doing though since I’ve started already. The drawing isn’t mine. It’s just a customized internet meme where I’ve added a loonie and some text. Yeah, i’ll post an update in a couple of weeks.

04/04/2012 10:25 am

Wow good luck! I’m horrible with no spends.

04/04/2012 10:28 am

Thanks. I’m not sure how this will play out, but even if I fail at least I will have learned something I think.

04/04/2012 2:23 pm

Hey, just happen to stumble across your blog from Sunny. Great blog you have here! Love hearing stories about personal finance, just beginning to see how many like minded people is out there.

25 days of no spending is going to HARD, unless you plan on hibernating!! There are always expenses coming up like friend calling you out for coffee to sideline you. Just be careful and good luck :)

04/04/2012 2:29 pm

Nice of you to leave a comment PC. I’ve been following Sunny’s blog for awhile now. I like her writing style. I know what you mean by those unexpected expenses. My social life will have to take a back seat this month lol. But not only that, I was just hit with a special levy for my condo yesterday :(

Young Professional Finances
04/05/2012 9:40 am

Wow, 25 no spend days seems like a lot! I can barely get myself to one no spend day a week (i.e. 5 a month is hard). It’s sad but true. If you can do this, that’s amazing!

04/05/2012 9:54 am

I think it’s going to be harder than I originally thought. With 26 more days in the month I only have 3 more days of spending (>_<)

Not Working
04/16/2012 1:33 pm

You seem to do well ! GOGO liquid 😉

04/16/2012 11:07 pm

Thanks, I’m doing alright.

04/16/2012 1:46 pm

Looks like you must have stocked up on food from the previous month!!! Yelch, condos are full of surprises… always pulling out more money from condo owners.

04/16/2012 11:17 pm

I’m actually thinking about doing a couple posts on buying food.