October 2013 Net Worth update:(+1.94%) Defending spending habits


Using our budget as a spend tracker has been our saving grace this past couple of years but recently we’ve been spending more money.

In our budget update for October we recognized the need for a flexible spending plan but also a plan to continue saving our money.

If you always have to justify your purchases then chances are you likely don’t need to spend the money and your defending your spending habits. I don’t think we went too far overboard in October but we certainly spent far more than anticipated once again.

In our October budget update I talked about romance and money and how that affected our budget this past month. I also wondered whether many others feel the same crunch with seasonal spending.

Seasonal spending is where you spend money just because you think you need to buy something for someone or yourself because the weather starts to get cold, you are indoors more and the holidays are right around the corner.

If you spend money just because you think you have to it could really dent your budget and your overall net worth like it has for us although we are keeping a level head when we whip out our credit cards to pay for what we purchase.


Spending cuts


In November we have decided to make a couple of spending cuts to our budget in hopes of driving up our net worth since it’s been slow the past two months.

Since we have been spending more time in the mall lately we are going to ‘step away from the mall’ for the month of November as well I will drop my allowance.

Now dropping my allowance means that I’ll be making more coffee at home and not buying it on the road. I’m working on getting rid of the extra cups of coffee I drink during the day because my body really doesn’t need it.

I’ve also just recently stopped drinking beer so that will help out as well. I no longer wish to consume alcohol as I’ve been working out pretty hard and want to fill my body with all things healthy. Since quitting smoking almost 2 years ago I’ve overcome many challenges in my life but keeping my body fit will always be a priority and I don’t want to lose sight of that goal.

I know that in order to grow our net worth we must spend some money whether it is on renovation materials or investing in ourselves. Sometimes it’s hard to see the money disappear from the radar but if you have a plan when the money goes you should know it’s going to be invested in a smart way.


Changes to Net Worth


This month we saw our Net Worth jump $10,145.42 mainly due to increases in pensions and investments. The markets have been relatively good considering all that has been going on with various economies. The pound gained strength against the Canadian Dollar to sit at $1.6792 on Oct 31st 2013. This is our biggest monthly percentage increase we’ve had at 1.94%.


Do you find that you are defending your spending habits?


Understanding net worth


What Does Individual Net Worth Mean?

Net Worth is a snap shot of your financial health sort of like a picture or debt to net assets. In simple terms it’s a total of the value of your assets minus your liabilities.


Determining net worth


How To Determine Net Worth?

Net Worth = Assets – Liabilities 

Figuring out net worth is fairly easy as long as you know your personal numbers or monthly finances. Net Worth is simply adding up all your assets (what you own) then taking away your liabilities (what you owe) which will give you a net worth number. Understanding your net worth will help you determine if you are on track to meeting or beating your personal financial goals. It doesn’t get any easier than that.

Do you know how to calculate your own Net Worth?

Now you can stop asking yourself, how do you find out your net worth because it’s easy to determine. Why not go ahead and calculate your own using our Free Money saving Tool Net worth Calculator (Canadian Budget Binder 2012)


Our short-term goals 2013


  • To pay off our mortgage with-in the 5 yr term ending in April 2014- Update: Money has been moved to my bank account now I have to transfer it to Canada. I hope to have this done with-in the next month as I’m watching the exchange rate.
  • Focus on TFSA and other investing- will look at this once the mortgage is paid in full
  • To Save money for smaller renovations- trying little by little
  • Continue to meal plan, create new homemade meals- I’m always whipping up something new in the kitchen (check out all my new recipe index on the blog)
  • To  sow and grow more vegetables/herbs in the garden to save money- garden is done for the season.
  • To take vacation somewhere in Ontario this summer- planning this now!
  • To take this blog to self-hosted and get a redesign (happening 2013!)- This has now been completed, finally!
  • Learn more about Passive Income- working on this one
  • To Read a new Personal Finance Book- working on this, slowly
  • Learn more about SEO and Blogging- I’m always learning something new but it’s all beneficial and has helped Canadian Budget Binder grow the way that it has. My eyes and ears are open.


Our long-term goals 2013


  • Continuing to educate ourselves on personal finance and investments
  • Continue to network with other like-minded individuals
  • To finish renovating our home- Landscaping is pretty much completed as of the end of September. Next is bathrooms.
  • To continue with educational training to further careers- More training for me coming up in the next month.
  • To save money for big renovations- I’m starting to tear out the bathrooms and measuring up the kitchen to purchase new cabinets and counter tops and do a full makeover. 
  • Start thinking about saving for a second-hand vehicle in the next 5-7 years
  • Save up for a European Adventure in the next couple of years
  • Potentially save for a second home to rent out or build/move to our dream home


Our financial numbers


When budgeting anything is possible, we are proof of that although we still have a long way to go in our journey. These are our numbers and our goals, not a means of comparison towards your own goals. We don’t care how much money others make or if their net worth is lower or higher as it’s not a competition. I hope our experiences perhaps will help guide you along your financial path working towards debt freedom.


Different paths


Not everyone has the same path in life. Some of  you may have had to start over like I did or go to school a second time and now have OSAP loans to pay back. Others may have divorced, lost money in the stock market or other investments, lost a job, fell ill and so on but you can’t let that stop you, I didn’t. Some of you may have been given trust funds, paid-for homes, paid educations or perks in life that give you a financial kick-start and that’s OK too. Remember what I said, “It’s not about how much money you make, it’s how you save it”.

Focus on you and don’t let the evil eye of money jealousy or keeping up with the Joneses cloud your vision. No one cares about your money as much as you do so don’t waste your energy trying. The only reason people accumulate wealth is because they know how to save or invest it wisely even if they did inherit money or win the lottery.

The smallest improvements should mean big strides in working towards reaching your goals. Sometimes we have to fail in order to learn and we’ve all been there. Money can be an evil force for some people especially those who are negative towards their own situation. I urge you to be optimistic and little by little with determination you too should see improvements, that is if you want that to happen.


Our net worth


We are always looking for ways how to increase our savings and by tracking our net worth these numbers below show us how well we are doing or what areas we should put a bit more focus in.



Net worth updates 2012-2013




Overall: Considering what we spent in the budget in October we did fairly well this month in terms of net worth increase according to our personal goals. We could have done better but you know to be honest we are well on our way to reaching our goals and that’s the focus of this post and will continue to be. Sometimes we need to learn to live a little and even if you feel your are defending your spending habits it likely means your plan is not working so well for you or you might need to tweak it.



Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

The Grocery Game Challenge Oct 28-Nov 3, 2013 #4- When the price is right and wrong

Walmart-kraft-dinner-whole-wheatI’LL TAKE TEN AT THAT PRICE…NOT!


For the most part as customers we expect product pricing to be accurate when we grocery shop.

I’m betting that a good majority of people don’t watch the computer screen when their order is being scanned in.

Not being mindful at the cash may mean you might miss out on opportunities to score some freebies and or help the store to correct issues in the system and in this case today outside of the scanning system.


Speak up and help


As a regular customer to a few local grocery stores I always do my best to help the store out if I see a problem and I at least hope they appreciate it.

In my eyes we are the watch dogs for the grocery store because it’s such an intense system that even the slightest error could cause a customer to get upset or in this case laugh a little, OK I laughed lots.

I don’t know about you but I’m pretty sure my wages won’t allow for me to purchase a box of Kraft Dinner at $172 a box.

I’m also pretty sure that I’ll never have an opportunity to see if Kraft Dinner hits the high price of $172 in my life-time but maybe your kids, kids, kids, kids might.

If you are a pricing warrior at the grocery store like I am you know your prices and you know when you see a product price error instantly.

The scanning code of practice if you are not aware is when a product price is labelled on the shelf $1.00 for example and rings up at the cash register for $2.00.

In that instance you could ask the cashier to adjust the price after checking the correct price as well as to apply the scanning code of practice (SCOP).

The shops do this so they are held accountable for pricing errors that may be charging the customer too much money.

While on a trip out-of-town for work I stopped in a local Wal-mart on my lunch break to be nosey.

OK, the truth is I wanted a free McDonald’s coffee too but decided to waste some time and walk around to see what goodies I could find.


Price is right and wrong


I just so happened to stumble upon this beautiful photo opportunity that I posted above of Whole Wheat Kraft Dinner and the ridiculous price.

There was only one other customer in the vicinity who watched me take a photo and say there was no way I’d ever pay $172 for a box of Kraft Dinner. I don’t eat the stuff but it’s pricing errors like this that make you go hmm. Who was half asleep when they posted this price?

I’m sure you have seen many errors in the grocery store if you are mindful but do you bring it to the attention of the staff to get it changed like I did yesterday with this Kraft Dinner? That wasn’t the only pricing error I spotted neither.

I don’t have a photo but they had the cases of Nestle water on sale on the front page of their weekly flyer for $2.44 a case of 24 Nestle but the giant sign in front of the wall of water was listed at $2.47.

Now, some of you might laugh at me saying it’s only a few pennies but in my head what do you think the first thing was that I thought? That is correct if you said, scanning code of practice.

I grabbed a case only to find out that it was in fact scanning in at the sale price of $2.44 so my only conclusion was the pricing person that night either didn’t sleep so well or really didn’t give a rats about pricing the products.

Heck it could have been 2 different people for all I know as I’m only having a laugh but it’s errors like these that could potentially cost the customer and the store depending on how the pricing error falls.

When I got to the cash I did inform the cashier of the price of the water and pointed it to her as it was in plain view. She laughed and said she would get someone to change it right away. I waited in line for a good 5 minutes and she did nothing at that time.

I am hoping that she did inform someone to make that change but it leaves me to question whether the grocery store is as fired up about pricing on the shelf if it rings up correct as opposed to when a customer can get a SCOP and the system price is wrong? I’ve been to shops where SCOP was applied and they immediately fixed the pricing error in the computer system but this was different.

Would you tell the grocery store if you saw an abnormal or incorrect price on a product that was scanning the proper price?

Do you find incorrect scanned products are still incorrect the next time you go shopping and you can get another SCOP because of the grocery stores lack of not correcting the pricing error?


Grocery saving tips


Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the saving process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…… Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget.. check it out!


October Grocery Game Challenge Posts



download symbol

Missed past Grocery Game posts? Catch up on all the latest grocery saving posts below!


Food food and more food



Food Basics

  • 4 x granulated sugar Sale 2/$3.00
  • Sweet potatoes $6.00 ( I bought lots but they can get pricey)
  • Tre-Stelle Ricotta $4.99-30% ($1.50)
  • Reduced produce pomegranate x3 $2.49
  • Reduced produce cauliflower $0.99
  • Reduced produce oranges and apples $0.99
  • Bananas $1.97
  • 6x OB Tampons 40′s Sale $3.99-$2.00

Total out-of-pocket $ 35.64


  • Carrots $1.67
  • 1 x cucumber Sale $0.97
  • 4 x sesame oil sale $3.98
  • Kraft Peanut Butter $3.97
  • Tub of bread crumbs $1.68

Total out-of-pocket $24.21

grocery shop 4 October

Yearly grocery budget for two: $2819.38

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget For October $235.00-$21.12 (overage September)= $213.88
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $12.00
  • Total Discounts this Week: $0
  • Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Stockpile Budget: $0 Used $20.00 (ham)
  • Total Spent This Week: $24.21+$35.64= $59.85
  • Total Spent So Far for October $67.71=$69.08+$59.85=$196.64
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $0
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month of (October): $0
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $77.09-$59.85=$17.24 left to spend this month
  • Total Coupons Used This Month: $2.25+$12.00=$14.25
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: $0
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: $206.95 (Jan)+ $160.77 (Feb) + (March)$169.62 + (April)$397.74+(May) $155.68 + (June) $216.01+ (July) $235.83 + (August) $182.35 + (September) $255.69 + (October) $196.64=  $2177.28 (does not include stockpile budget)
  • Rendezvous Account: $65.38+$17.24 =$82.62<> This is money saved if there is any leftover at the end of a month of grocery shopping for a date night for the wife and I.
  • Weekly Overview: We didn’t have too much to buy this week as we have plenty of food to use up. With us being gone one week this month and considering we should have a no shop week we were happy with this months grocery game challenge success.


 Canadian Coupons Found




Frequently Asked Questions



Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.


  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?


No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.


  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?


The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.


  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?


Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.



Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups of the week including Checkout 51 from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge.


  • What is an FPC?


An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.



You can find all your store coupon policies here. If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.



I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices. Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this t of our budget like many people do and this is why the grocery game challenge was created.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

You’ve made a wise decision.

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada!




Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

CBB Net Worth Update~November 2012

Money Bags

I can’t believe November has come and gone so quickly, now it’s time to get into the festive mode and thinking about our yearly goals for 2013. By posting our CBB Family Net Worth and Budget Update once a month here is a means to motivate ourselves to continue down our financial path. We are a Canadian couple who make an average salary and want to know where we stand each month. We want others to know that you don’t have to make 6 figures to have a Net Worth. There’s no race to the finish line because no one really knows where that line is. You could die tomorrow or you may live until you are 110 years old.

What does Individual Net Worth mean?

Net Worth is a snap shot of your financial health sort of like a picture. It’s a total of the value of your assets minus your liabilities. Posting our financial numbers is about showing others how budgeting has worked for us.

Who’s the Man behind Canadian Budget Binder?

My name is Mr. CBB and I’m the frugal guy that does all the talking around here. Yes, some women think Frugal Men are Sexy and I’m here to show you how to spot one! Well not really but I’m sure you will have a good idea just by reading posts I’ve written around this blog.

There is also a Mrs. Canadian Budget Binder but she does not currently blog here. Together we are Canadian Budget Binder. We started our Canadian Budgeting Journey to lead us towards a happier financial future. No one handed us money on a silver platter and we earned every penny whilst returning to school twice along the way. Toss in a huge move from the UK to Canada and you can see life has had it’s ups and downs for us financially. There are financial implications when you move across the world something I wasn’t prepared for.

I enjoy learning from others who enjoy finance and taking care of their future before the future takes care of them. No one will have the magical answers for your financial situation, you need to figure out what’s right for you. I can’t tell you what’s right or wrong, all I can do is tell you what worked for us. After all I’m not a finance professional and you should consult with one when dealing with your own money, just like we do.

I blog at Canadian Budget Binder to encourage, motivate and help others who think that budgeting is a waste of time and can’t help them out of debt. I also like to connect with people who believe a budget is what they need to get back on track and are positive about getting back on track.

If you aren’t serious or don’t understand the reality that budgeting is important than don’t waste your time. It doesn’t matter if you owe money, you need to see the numbers every month. Don’t make budgeting seem as if it’s only for people who are not in debt, because that’s the wrong way to perceive it.

How To Determine Net Worth?

Realize that no one can snap their fingers and make your debt disappear.  Figuring your Net Worth is not hard it’s just a step in the financial process that comes together as long as you have all of your numbers ready. When budgeting anything is possible, we are proof of that although we still have a long way to go in our journey.

These are our numbers and our goals, not a means of comparison towards your own goals. We don’t care how much money others make or if their net worth is more as it’s not a competition, it’s about hope. It’s about hope that we can follow a financial path in life that is not so stressful no matter if you have thousands or millions in the bank. I hope what I post for you, the fans, about our experiences perhaps will help guide you along that financial path towards debt freedom. Sometimes seeing our own numbers is what it takes to kick it into high gear like it did for us. I encourage you to learn what your own numbers are and make them work for you.

Money is Money, Debt is Debt, A Budget is SMART-Mr. CBB

Canadian Budget Binders Financial Health

I received a question last month about our Emergency Savings Account. In the past I have mentioned why it is so high but want to go over that again for those wondering. The money in our Emergency Savings account is the money we will use to pay off our mortgage in full in early 2013.  So there, now you know.

Let’s see how we did in November!

November Net Worth Update 2012(1)

Note : Double Click Photo to see it full size as I can’t make it any bigger for some reason.

In October when I did our Net Worth Update I did it a few days into the month and I made an error, sorta. What happened was I used the figures a week into November to calculate our net worth which made October artificially high and November artificially low including the mortgage. Silly mistake but we’re all human and mistakes happen. Although I try to get this done by the end of the month sometimes I have to push it back. I accidentally took the wrong numbers which I caught this month.

Remedy: So this doesn’t happen again if the post will be late I will pull the numbers at the end of the month so when I do write the post the numbers are  accurate. This will be a goal for next year although this was the first time I made this error. I also lost money on my pay this month when I took a week’s vacation as they used my wage from last year which was half of my wage this year. Starting in January 2013 this post will change as we will be paying off the mortgage and investing more of our money.  I may go to percentages instead of dollar increase/decrease unless you want to still see the $$ figures. It’s only up from here on in!

Do you know how to calculate your own Net Worth? Why not go ahead and calculate your own using our Free Tool Net worth Calculator (Canadian Budget Binder 2012)

It's Not About How Much Money You Make It's How You Spend It

Follow Canadian Budget Binder on Twitter HERE , Facebook HERE and Pinterest Here. 

Photo credit: Money Bags- Copyright (c) <a href=’http://www.123rf.com’>123RF Stock Photos</a>

Canadian Budget Binder-The Saturday Weekend Review #2

Saturday Week In Review Mr.CBB

Mr.CBB’s  Saturday Weekend Review

Saturday comes so fast and for some it’s the weekend of fun and pleasure and for others like me it’s a bit of both work and pleasure.  With Hurricane Sandy in the midst we brace for a wet weekend and upcoming week. Canadian Hurricane Centre says we won’t see the worst of  Sandy until next week when it hits us in Ontario. Lots of rain already, and it still keeps on coming.

This past week I was back in the yard hopefully for the last clean up of the year. You know when you get your lawn looking just right, no leaves then a gale of wind comes and dumps another load. Well, that’s how my lawn looked a couple of days after all the work I did the previous week. Meh, I’m never going to get through my to-do list but at least I’m doing it.

The Welfare Food Challenge is over but The Grocery Game Challenge I hold each Tuesday is still on. We continue to eat some amazing food here in the CBB home that doesn’t cost alot out-of-pocket like ginger lemon mushroom chow mein noodles topped with lemon pepper fish. Keep checking in each Sunday as I post the next frugal recipe that I create.

Today I’m trying my hand at witches fingers for Halloween. Mrs. CBB has made them for years now and I’ve helped her the past 3 years. This year it is my turn to make them for the friends and family that will pop around for a scary night of fun on Wednesday for some trick or treating, scary movies and good food. No it’s not a party.. we don’t dress up but we like to make a fun night out of Halloween. I will post the recipe and pictures tomorrow!

Financial News

What’s Been Happening at Canadian Budget Binder

What a busy week at the blog it has been. (Click Click) This week Canadian Budget Binder surpassed all recent highs with the site analytics. (Oh Ya Baby) Our views and clicks for the week were well into the thousands. (Bring it On) CBB also managed to pick up 77 NEW Blog Subscriber Fans and over 100 new fans on Facebook. (CBB’s House is like Family) I wonder if I rap this blog resume for Ellen DeGeneres she will hire me haha! Probably not, it’s rubbish, but I just Love that woman, she makes the world go round. We should all love life like Ellen! Good Luck to her new hire~

We have a line-up of guest posts coming your way so please be patient if you submitted one as my spots have dwindled down to 3 per week now. I promise I will get there and showcase all the good stuff I have backed up in my line-up. In the next week I will have our Budget and Net Worth Update coming your way and I’m hoping to hear what you have to say. Would you Invest the money or pay off the mortgage?

That’s all that’s happening here so keep a watch out.. never know what bomb I will drop next and no not the smelly type!

Canadian Budget Binder’s Weekly Post Recap

Top Blog

This is a NEW Feature I started last week on Canadian Budget Binder. This is where I will share your website so my fans can check you out if you send me the most traffic for the week! The Top Site To Drive Traffic To Canadian Budget Binder for this week goes to……

Canadian Savers Logo

Canadian Savers sent the most traffic our way which toppled the charts for an all time viewer high and click rate for Canadian Budget Binder.

Thanks  to Jasmine and Julia at Canadian Savers!

Weekly Top 2 Honourable Mentions

  1. Save Big Live Better- Thanks Julia!
  2. When Life Gives You Lemons- Add Vodka- Thanks Daisy!

I Like You

Blogs From Around The Web That Shared Us With Their Fans!

Thank-You for taking the time to link up to CBB!

(If I miss You..please let me know and I will include your post next week)


What People Searched to Find Canadian Budget Binder on the Web

Search terms of the week are really a hoot! Here are a few of them for your viewing pleasure.  What are you saying about them? Any typos below are simply the person who searched who made the error or me ;-)

Top 10 How we found Mr.CBB>>>>>>

Mr. CBB’s Top Pick- Old Men Taste Like Pumpkins! I don’t even know what to say to this.. do you?

  • car-  Nice to see such a small word drove someone to my blog… no pun intended… ok, a little haha
  • Old Man Beach Long distance- Lots of old man talk this week I guess
  • You have to start giving to know how much you can Quotes- How much you can What?? I can fill that in with all sorts of nice and nasty things *but I won’t*.
  • Lettuce and Egg Sandwich- I presume they were looking for a photo and not a recipe. Not much recipe to an egg and lettuce sandwich now is there. Take the lettuce and put it on the slice of bread. Take the egg and put it on top of the lettuce. Add the second slice of bread.. there you have it! A Lettuce and Egg Sandwich.
  • Can you put camel inside of a muffin- Hmm I’m going with no, although if you meant caramel, then yes.
  • Wire Strainer like Nigella Uses- Yep anything Nigella is good for me.
  • How To Get Into Debt- EASY.. SPEND MONEY>>> LOTS OF IT! Trick question I bet… uh huh.. yup!
  • How Much Does  A Bag of Hickory Sticks Cost At 7/11 with 5% tax-  Let’s just take a wild guess and go with under $5. lol
  • OSAP Pepsi VIP- This must be the new name for student loans
  • Why Can’t I own a Canadian- A Canadian What? Bird? Skunk? Raccoon?

It's Not About How Much Money You Make It's How You Spend It

Are you NEW to Canadian Budget Binder?

If you are new Start here!

Do you have a Question for Mr.CBB please click HERE to ask him!

Are you on Mr.CBB’s Blog Roll? Check HERE… if not and you want me to check out your blog and add you to my ever-growing blog roll simply click here and fill out the form. Introduce yourself and lets LINK UP!

If you are new to Canadian Budget Binder LIKE or Follow Mr.CBB on TwitterFacebook and Pinterest or you can also sign up for email notifications here.

Photo Credits: Copyright (c) <a href=’http://www.123rf.com’>123RF Stock Photos</a>