Sunday, 30 June 2019

My Fixed Expenses

I spend under 16k/year to live. How about you?
Photo by 青 晨 on Unsplash
Last Updated: December 2019

I'm flattered you're here, especially if you've come from my new podcast project, Explore FI Canada (with Chrissy and Money Mechanic). If you've heard about my low living expenses, scroll all the way down to see the daily/monthly breakdown of my fixed expenses.

If there is one thing I'm certain of, it's that I have one of the lowest annual expenses in Canada. Period. I spend exactly $15,519.12 to live! If I am that certain that my expenses are so low in comparison to the average Canadian, than I am that certain that I can accurately show you how I spend my money and what we both value doesn't come at a high cost that forces everyone else to work until 40, 50, 60, 70+. 

Before you get skeptical, keep in mind I'm writing as a taxpayer, a homeowner, a husband, a father, a driver and everything else you and I have come to enjoy living a luxurious middle-class life - a.k.a. the Canadian Dream. I'm just like you.

So on second thought, I'm going to take the blog in a direction where the cheapest Canadian products can easily be found and your spending habits can be checked against mine

You know how you can check IMDB for actors, directors, etc? Why isn't there anything like that for Canadian expenses? Why don't you check my site for the $40 internet package I use? Or the $2800 in property taxes I pay? How do I buy phones and what plan do I use to lower my expenses and ultimately my FIRE number? We will both get different value from different products so I'll be sure to include multiple options.

Also, don't forget that I'm only one third of Explore FI Canada podcast. Please show love to my fellow co-hosts and bloggers: Chrissy at and Money Mechanic at

Feel free to comment below - or email me here:
You can listen to me here:

Ryan Myricks

The Fixed Expenses
(costs are calculated daily, monthly expenses are shown in brackets)
(every monthly cost you see is averaged out over a year. For example, utilities will of course fluctuate depending on the season so the monthly cost swings from $140 to $250)

 Total: $41.53/day ($1263.26)       Annual: $15,159.12

  • Kitchener Detached 1200sqft: $20.78 ($632.15)
    • Kitchener Property Taxes: $7.69 (233.90)
    • Kitchener Utilities (all 3): $6.55 (199.22)
    • RBC Mortgage Interest: $2.77 (84.5)
    • The Cooperators Insurance: $2.05 (62.55)
    • Fido Internet: $1.48 (45.2)
    • Water Softener Salt: $0.22 (6.78)
  • Food: $13.08 ($330.41)
    • First Adult: $1.64/meal on avg (150)
    • Second Adult: $1.64/meal on avg (150)
    • Child: $1 (30.41) - milk and food
  • 2012 Toyota Corolla: $7.06 ($214.75)
    • Bought used to cash so no payments
    • Fuel Costs: $3.56 (108.28)
    • Insurance: $2.93 (89.12)
    • Maintenance: $0.56 (17.03)
    • Licence Plate Sticker: $0.32 (10)
    • Misc: $1.23 (37.5)
      • Spotify Music Streaming: $0.49 (15) - I share this family account with a few family members - in return I get access to Netflix and Disney+ for free.
      • Professional Certificate Fee: $0.41 (12.5)
      • Hygiene: $0.32 (10) 
      • Child: $0.85 (25.85)
        • 1 Child, 18 months old - I expect these costs will go up as I begin to enroll her in community programs such as gymnastics or swimming.
        • Parent's Choice Diapers & Wipes: $0.85 (25.85)
        • Childcare: $TBD - My child is attending daycare starting October/2019. While I should be including this expense, we are not sure how long we'll keep her their nor do we intend to send future kids to full-time daycare. We're going to see how this goes and reflect on the value before including it as a fixed expense.
          • Update Dec/19: We are pulling our child from fulltime daycare starting Feb/20, will update with final number once it is all finalized. Should be about $200~/month.
      • Phone Plans: $0.74 (22.6)
        • Public Mobile Plan #1: $0 - Thanks to my readers for providing me with enough referrals to eliminate this expense entirely!!
        • Public Mobile Plan #2: $0.74 (22.6)
      • Banking: $0
        • Tangerine Chequing: no fees
        • EQ Bank Savings: no fees
        • Rogers Elite Mastercard: no fees
        • Questrade LIRA: no fees
        • Questrade RRSP: no fees
        • Wealthsimple Trade TFSA: no fees
        • Wealthsimple Trade Taxable Account: no fees


        1. I love your plan it will be really neat to see it all in one place.

          Its also cool to see what you count as fixed expenses verses not. It seems like everyone does it differently. Like some include their mortgage payment because it has to come out every month, and some don’t because the house will be paid off eventually and it will go away then. Others also include their sinking fund like for major house repairs, or newer car/major car repair ($17 isn’t going to cover a new transmission).

          Thank you for putting yourself out there. Now to “geek out” run my comparisons and see if i can do better.

          Happy fi

          1. Thanks for your replies! I included anything that is a recurring annual (or more frequent) expense. Replacing a transmission is thankfully not common, so I don't factor it into my FIRE number.

            Since the home I'm paying off will likely retain its value and the money won't disappear, I don't consider it an expense. The interest and taxes and whatnot of course are. However, I don't consider the value of my house in my FIRE number calculations because it pays me nothing. If I was smart, I would get it to pay me something - such as hosting international students like Chrissy from

        2. Also it would be interesting to see how you guys get your food that low?!

          Is your eating out on your variable side? Or is that included? Since you will eat out eventually.

          1. I don't include dining out - that is discretionary and doesn't commonly occur. I just checked my credit card statement and the last time we had a meal out was August 17th, so almost 6 weeks ago.

            The food budget is low because we buy in bulk, batch cook several meals at once for leftovers, drink water/tea/coffee almost exclusively, and count the amount of calories going in and out. There's a lot of "start up" cost to eating this way but it's worth it because it leads to excellent meal planning and time management (which in turn is good for your wallet!).

          2. Only looking at groceries my family (2 adults 2 children) spends about 600 a month and we do all the things you are doing.

            Do you eat meat / dairy / fresh fruits and vegetables?

            I can see about $50/month of fat in our monthly food budget that are things we pay a premium for but beyond that I would need to start cutting the 3 categories above.

          3. If you do everything I do then you either shop for more expensive products than me or your family consumes more than I do. Seeing as how my child is 1.5 years old, she's not really a financial burden.

            Yes, we eat all 3 you mentioned. We use frozen meat, fruits and veggies when those items will be cooked (changing the composition makes these just as edible as fresh). I will say my local Zher's loves to price 3lbs of apples at $7/bag for some reason. When they jack up the prices, I simply go without apples until I'm near a Wal-Mart or other discount store with apples on for $1-2/lb. Using the Flipp app can make this easier.

        3. wow that's impressive! We are also have 2 adults, one toddler family (living in Van) and our expenses easily double yours and we don't even own a car and have cheap housing cost as we are currently house sitting. Hats off to you and thank you for sharing your stats. It's so good to see great examples of what one can achieve and be inspired to do better!

          would love more in future posts about how you manage to keep your spending so low.

          1. Thank you so much Justine! I'm thinking of talking more about this on my podcast, I suppose it'll make sense to also post here about it too - even if it's just the transcript of what I say on the air! Great suggestion, thanks again!