Nothing sexy to report for expenses in August of 2018. I spent a total of $2,900 for my living expenses in Seville, Spain. I’ll break it down further in this post. Not much different from last month.
I am living between the US and Spain so, naturally, my expenses will be a little higher. Fortunately, cost of living is low in Spain and I have the option of renting out my condo in the US if I need the income.
Housing – $1,999
My condo in the US costs me around $470/month just to pay for HOA and property taxes. You won’t see prop taxes on here because I pay those just once a year – around $2,100.
In Seville, I am paying $600/month for rent but have since upgraded and will pay $1,100/month moving forward. I haven’t decided what my housing plans will be here long-term. Will I move back to the US, by a condo here, or keep renting?
Utilities are always included with these short-term rentals which is why you don’t see WiFi, gas, or water bills on here. The only thing I pay for is the electricity bill for the condo in Portland – that’s only $13/month.
Food – $198
August 2018 was a hectic month so I was eating out a little more but still managed to prepare a lot of meals at home. I ate out $31 worth and bought $167 in groceries.
Groceries are cheap in Spain. And eating out at a cafe can cost very little. I could eat out at a cafe every day and spend $10 for 2 people, comfortably. Of course, I am not referring to the tourist cafes.
Entertainment – $211
Most of this entertainment expense was having drinks with friends. I’m exploring new parts of Seville and nearby cities.
I also took a trip to Cadiz, a nearby beach city, which set me back a little as well. Train tickets, however, aren’t too expensive. 30 euros gets you a roundtrip ticket.
Clothing – $163
Clothing is also cheap in Spain but for $160 I bought only 2 articles of clothing from a sustainable, organic cotton boutique. I don’t mind paying the premium.
I am still looking for shoes so that’ll be the next big purchase – it should cost me 40 euros for the pair I’m looking at.
Personal Finance – $125
Many of you ask me why I still have a financial advisor. It’s the same reason I still exercise even though I am in good shape. Having a financial advisor helps me make the right decisions.
I pay relatively little because my situation is simple and I handle the majority of my own asset allocation rebalancing. But the feedback I get, the future planning, and the risk mitigation, is all worth much more than $125/month.
On the graph above I only track my basic spending. The extra money I paid in rent, for example, isn’t included on that graph.
You can see my spending has fluctuated a lot over the past few years but it is starting to stabilize. At the same time my passive income keeps growing from my investments – it’s somewhere around $2,200/month.
If you keep a similar spreadsheet then you’ll know when you’re financially independent – it’s when your passive income line on the graph (blue) goes past your monthly spending (in red).
Should I be using 3% instead of 4% as my passive income rate? Maybe. But I’m looking at trends and care less about the exact values. I anticipate earning money for a long time to come, so, why stress myself out over minutia.