Mid-Year Progress for 2017

Here we are already in July, with half of the year 2017 behind us. This is an excellent time to do a mid-year review of the Modest Millionaires family progress in terms of spending for 2017.

I will also use this as an opportunity to expose our spending for 2015 and 2016.

Our expenses for the first 6 months of 2017 have been averaged on a monthly basis in order to get a good idea of how much we will be spending for the entire year if we maintain the same level of spending.

As a quick reminder, our objective, as described in our 2025 plan, is to spend a yearly average of $45,000 CAD (about $35,000 USD).

CategorySub-CategoryYearly 2015Yearly 2016Estimated Yearly 2017Average Monthly 2017
Recurring fixed expenses$11,477$10,728$11,425$952
Home insurance$1,159$963$1,082$90
Car insurance$456$463$565$47
Municipal and school taxes$2,825$2,929$3,057$255
Public Transport$1,187$1,016$1,742$145
Car registration/licences$820$687$689$57
Shopping (clothing/Books)$672$1,373$1,982$165
Other entertainment$307$484$115$10
Baby supplies$1,533$1,417$912$76
Kids activities/Toys/Clothing$724$1,052$538$45
Variable expenses$9,575$9,367$7,638$637
Home Improvement$1,696$1,703$1,844$154
Home supplies/services$2,562$1,779$1,473$123
Car repair/Parking$273$1,701$1,358$113
Financial costs$221$223$354$30
Pet food$454$544$537$45
Pet health$439$92$0$0

A few important notes for each of those years:


  • Since Ms Mod is on maternity leave for most of that year and pregnant with baby 2, we don’t have lots of expenses in terms or travel, alcohol and renovations.  
  • Our objective of $45,000 in spending is reached with a total of $44,321 for the year.


  • This is a very special year for the Modest Millionaires family since we welcome our baby #2, which means that we have two children under 2 years of age for a better part of the year (yikes!). This has a small negative impact on our spending in large part because we ended up being lazy with certain of our frugal habits when we felt a bit overwhelmed, for example in terms of meal planning and grocery shopping.
  • Bought new winter tires.
  • We still come out pretty good in our total expenses with $49,463, so $4,463 over our ideal objective of $45,000.

2017 :

  • In January, we went on vacation with our family of 4 which ended up being a rather expensive trip.
  • A few increases in spending related to Ms Mod’s return to work after her maternity leave (snif!), such as: daycare costs, public transportation passes and other various small expenses.
  • Bought new summer tires.
  • We are on track to spend almost $55,000 CAD ($42,700 USD) for the entire year if we maintain the same level of spending, ouch! Not such great progress as that is $10,000 over our objective. On the bright side, we still have 6 months to lower that gap and lots of the expenses that took place at the beginning of the year should not be recurring.

Objectives to reduce our spending for the remainder of 2017 and a few ways to make them happen:

Grocery/lunches/fast-food/restaurants :

  • Get back to planning meals for the week to avoid having to plan a dinner at the last minute.
  • When we have someone watch the kids for the occasional date night, we should prepare a nice meal at home which would be less expensive and probably even more enjoyable than going out to a restaurant (or we could only go out for an appetizer or dessert if we really want to enjoy a meal out, just not have a full meal with pricey restaurant priced wine).
  • Get back into the habit of preparing one or two large recipes per week to keep in the freezer for last minute meals.

Less expenses in wine/beer :

  • Establish a limit of price for a bottle of wine (we tend to buy more expensive wines especially when we have company or if we are invited to someone’s home for dinner).
  • Have more alcohol free days per week.


  • Avoid further expenses in shopping (Ms Mod spoiled herself a bit in terms of clothing with her return to work and Mr Mod replaced his work and sport shoes which was rather costly).
  • Prepare a list of free activities to do with the kiddoes and when we spend time with friends.

To be continued…

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