Hello & welcome to another edition of "The Dough Report", where I talk about how much I made and spent in the past month. In the future, I'd like to branch out a little and also include thoughts on money, savings and all things financial in general. Why? Because I feel that apart from sharing how much we make, talking about everything else related to our finances is also slightly taboo. Let's change that! I'm curious to find out more about how everyone else is managing their money and I'm guessing you're too.
If you're new around here, it might be best to have quick read through the income reports I published previously to find out what exactly I'm doing here and why. Basically, each month I'd like to share the following: How much I earned, how much I spent/invested into my business and on what and what I learned during that month. So let's get to it.
February 2016 Earnings:
- Social Media Projects: 2.050,00€
- Copywriting: 1.735,00€
- Consulting (new website project): 1.500,00€
Total Revenue (excl. VAT): 5.285,00€
February 2016 Expenses*:
- Adobe Creative Suite: 8,50€
- Google Apps: 4,00€
- Mailchimp: 8,50€
- Google & FB Ads: 85,00€
- Website Hosting: 46,10€
- Phone & Internet: 45,00€
Total Expenses: 197,10€ (*Not included: social insurance payments, taxes, rent, utilities)
Total Net Profit: 5.087,90€
FYI: Please bear in mind that the sum you see above is definitely not the amount of money I get to spend this month, as at least 50-66% of it goes directly into a savings account set up specifically for future tax and social insurance payments.
Because it's been 7 months that I started doing them, I though it would be interesting to share an overview on my income from August 2015 to February 2016. The graphic above shows how much my income fluctuates - based on whether I am taking on more projects, whether I'm on vacation and obviously also what sort of projects I am currently working on. Because I knew I was going to be away for 3 weeks in Oct/Nov, I took on a lot of projects to make up for it in September. December always tends to be a little more quiet than the rest of the year (at least for me), but January and February now definitely picked up again. Because I'll again be away in March/April, I'm currently working extra-hard to finish up projects in time while also balancing this with focusing on booking clients for my 1-1 sessions for solopreneurs and freelancers.
My average income in the past 7 months was at 4.086,64€. While there's obviously still things like social insurance, taxes as well as rent and utilies to deduct from that sum, I'm still quite happy with the numbers overall. In my experience, as long as my income is at least somewhere around 3.000€, I can pay all my bills and even put a little into my savings account. Everything above that is awesome, obvs, and will most likely be spent on traveling, eating out and topping up my savings account even more. It took me a long time to get a handle on my finances, to be honest. I spent approx. 2 years living hand-to-mouth without thinking of saving more than a 100€ here and there, which bit me in the butt hard when I had to pay for 3 years' worth of social insurance within 1 year (approx. 11.000€!). In Austria, it's not uncommon for solopreneurs to go out of business after 3 years, which is why my 2015 (my 4th year in business) was a mad hustle that left me feeling like I mostly work not for myself, but for the social insurance company and tax authorities. Nevertheless, I was able to pay off all my bills and will hopefully be able to spend this year without any unpleasant surprises - fingers crossed!
What are your thoughts on saving? Do you keep track of everything you spend or do you just go with the flow and see what it says at the end of month? Do you have any advice on how to save, even just a little? I've heard of banks that round up when you pay with your card and automatically transfer that into a savings account, others take whatever is left at the end of the month and do the same. How about you? Let me know in the comments or tweet me your thoughts.
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