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How A Stage 4 Lockdown Impacted My Budget

This will be the only time my life where I managed to save such a large percentage of my income.

Being honest, the Melbourne Stage 4 lockdown hasn’t been a particularly enjoyable experience. What has been great however, is the impact the lockdown has had on my budget.

Here’s what happened.

My previously high transport costs fell to $0. My entertainment and eating out costs were also negligible. As a young 20-something in a big city, I tend to spend a lot on this category. My dental appointments were cancelled. My gym membership cost was frozen. Other than face masks, I didn’t have to buy any non-grocery essentials. I didn’t need to buy clothes, shoes or any other similar discretionary purchases.

As I was stuck at home, I could cook everything from scratch which lowered my grocery bill significantly. Working full-time in an office, I would previously purchase packaged snacks, bottled drinks and frozen dinners to help save time during a busy work week. Being at home, I am able to create my own snacks and drinks which is not only healthier but also so much cheaper.

This meant that I was able to save 75% of my income this month. This is an extraordinarily high figure, especially as I make a low income. With meticulous budgeting and constantly trying to be frugal – I average at around a 50/50 split between expenses and savings. My income has dropped drastically after being made redundant (as a result of the virus), yet I was able to save such a high percentage. Not bad!

Of course, I know that these figures are temporary – my expenses are will drastically increase next month. It was certainly interesting to analyse the impact an event like a lockdown can have on your budget.

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