I don’t actually even know where to start with this story. It’s just one of those months where everything that can go wrong, does! It is particularly frustrating for me considering that I’m a Finance Blogger and am meant to be so good at sticking to a budget, having an Emergency Fund for those unexpected expenses, and always knowing what to do.
This month has thrown some curve balls but luckily with hindsight one can always learn some lessons!
So let us start with the things that went wrong, and then cover some lessons I’ve learnt.
Incident 1: The oven stopped working
The oven stopped working near the beginning of the month and we’ve had an electrician out 3 times looking at it and the parts are now ordered. I’m a little afraid of what the cost will be, but it is either replacing the computer board (sounds very clever) or replacing the whole oven. As soon as the parts arrive we’ll be given a formal quotation and decide form there. However, the fact remains that we need an oven!
Total cost: Estimated R2,000
Incident 2: The internet stopped working
The internet stopped working 2 weekends ago but thankfully this turned out to be purely the service providers fault so after several calls and Twitter messages it got sorted out a few days later. Crisis averted.
Total cost: No money spent, but lots of mobile data was used.
Incident 3: The geyser burst
This happened just 5 days ago and even though it is covered by insurance I had to pay the R12,100 from my own account and wait to be reimbursed. I am so lucky that the geyser is installed outside so we had no water damage; I cannot imagine the stress of that.
Total cost: R750 excess, and R11,350 which will be reimbursed.
Incident 4: My phone screen shattered
This is hopefully the last incident for the month. My phone fell out of my pocket on the way to gym and fell right next to my car in the road. It was presumably driven over as the screen was completely shattered. I can’t help being thankful though that nobody stole it, and that it still works perfectly! My neighbor picked it up and gave it to me when I got home.
Total cost: R699
Lessons to Learn
- Life is very unpredictable
- Your plans will inevitably fall short
- Sometimes your budget just doesn’t work
- For all the things that happened this month, things could have been so much worse. So really, I should be thankful they weren’t!
A valuable lesson is that my Emergency Fund actually needs to be bigger. Currently I have a fund of R10,000 but after this month I feel it should be increased to R15,000. I will get the money from my insurance very soon but having to find extra money has caused some cash flow issues.
Another lesson to learn is to not take life too seriously. Don’t be too harsh on yourself when you need to move money around, use up some savings, go over budget, etc. Sometimes it is just part of life. Rather wait for your stress and emotions to calm down and then simply reevaluate the situation and your budget and devise a new plan of how to continue from where you are.
Plan as much as you can but remember that “life happens”