Nairobi Expense Account

Finally have one full year of data on expenses incurred. As part of an experiment I have tried to quantify daily spending over the last 365 days (and categorized them as follows)

Rent 37%, Investments 9%, Education 9% (bound to go up each coming year), Being a good guy 8% (Gifts 4%, Family 3%, Charity 1%), Fuel 7% (offset by more public transport use), Drinks 7% (socializing & entertaining), Dining 5%, Groceries 4% (not my docket) Communications 3% (take that Michael Joseph), Transport 3% (reading novels in the matatu), Utilities 3% (cost may double this year), Furniture 3%, Recreation 2% (I can afford to play more golf and get a decent handicap), Newspapers 2% (keeping up with politics & finance), Clothing 2% (FYI: Dr. Manu Chandaria only has 7 suits), Repairs 2%, Parking 1%, Personal 1%, Electronics 1%.

13 thoughts on “Nairobi Expense Account

  1. ke

    You play golf and you take the matatu? I’m surprised you don’t drive.

    This breakdown makes you look like a penny pincher. I mean, 3% for gifts, 4% for that, 2% for this.

    I’aint sayin, i’m just sayin’

  2. Acolyte

    I see housing eats quite a big chunk of your expenditure. Its similar for many of us out here sadly but I see you seem to have a good handle on your $$$. You can teach us a thing or two.

  3. bankelele

    M: that would be toiletries, haircuts etc.

    PKW: actually not much, this is a net cash expense. If you factor in taxes, pensions, it would be much lower

    KE: strange contradiction? Recreation also includes holiday travel. Me a pincher? I think not, thought am not a tither if that’s what you mean

    Acolyte: Housing is necessary, I’ve been on the look out for a apartment to buy, but nothing fits so far. On spending, this is not based on any plan, but just a tally of what was spent in a cash (have no credit cards) over the last 12 months (rent is paid in cash too)

  4. Josiah

    Nice accounting… I know from personal experience that maintaining daily accounts requires a great deal of discipline.

    3 % on communication – thats an interesting stat.

    Any projections on how inflation will affect your expenses breakdown in 365 days?

  5. adam23

    Hey Banks,

    What about your monthly savings allocation?

    Investments don’t count…

    I mean actual savings – for emergencies. You need at least 6 -8 months equivalent of your monthly expenses.

    What about medical expenses? Is this covered by employer in full.

    Otherwise, it is nice to see a brother who can handle his hard earned money.


  6. Shiko-Msa

    Housing that’s a lot. Good math though. I’ll try to do some of my own. Thanks for the idea.

    Manu Chandaria has just 7 suits? And maybe they’re not even the expensive kind.

  7. bankelele

    Josiah: thanks. Communications is surprisingly low, and from my inflation tracking series is one of the few things that gets cheaper every year. In my case it’s mostly text messaging phone browsing and occasional use of a cyber café
    – over the next year, I see transportation, education and utilities going up

    Adam23; this was cash spend, not total expenses, so medical (employer), loans (bank) and taxes (government) are not here. I learnt that I spent too much on newspapers (which also includes magazines) – and if I cut back on those, I’d afford an extra holiday

    Shiko-Msa: this is not plan, these are the results. I saw Manu on KTN, and drives an old Mitsubishi; I wish they’d repeat it on the business weekly on Wednesday

    Maishinski: I wish, on both counts

    Half n Half: Where’s STAT? It’s a chore, but it all adds up

  8. Anonymous

    Back in the day, I had 18k Net salary and lived in an SQ paying 6,500/-

    That’s pretty close to your ratio…


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