Thursday, April 7, 2016

The Misadventures of Being On A Tight Budget, Pt 1

Everyone knows what it's like to budget, right?  Watching every penny, not using your debit/credit card until charges have cleared, or even remembering the days when you'd write a check and hope you get your paycheck deposited before it cleared your bank?

For this self-employed author, it's making doubly sure I don't go over a certain amount on my business account.  Which explains why I had such a shock on Tuesday.

The spouse deposited $160 into my account, for food and lodging, giving me a total budget of $180.  I knew the motel was going to be around $140, and let's face it....right now, I'm 'addicted' to Arby's curly fries, so I can eat for under $10 per meal!

Here's how the breakdown of my expenses went:
-Lunch Friday (McD's):  $8 (I'm rounding up on all charges)
-Lodging:  $140
-Dinner Friday (Arby's): $9
-Lunch Sat (at fair):  $3 (cash)
-Dinner Sat (Shooter's Bar and Grill):  $21 (cash)
-Breakfast Sun (Burger King): $7
-Dinner Sun (McD's):  $8

Charged expenses:  $172
Cash expenses:  $24

I should have had $8 left in my account, right?

No.  I discovered the motel had charged me for three nights, which threw my account into the negative.

I called the motel, who said they refunded that accidental third charge.  I didn't see it on my account, but decided maybe it would show up the next day.

It didn't.  Turned out they refunded the $$ to my prepaid credit card, the one I'd reserved the room with, instead.  My business account was slapped with $190 in overdraft fees.

Needless to say, I was furious.  After speaking with the bank and the hotel's assistant manager, I've got half the o/d fees returned, and the GM will call me tomorrow, and I'm hoping they will pay the other half.  Plus, the bank will refund any 'daily o/d' charges ($8 per day) until this is cleared up.

What have I learned from this?   From now on, I will use my prepaid credit card for motel expenditures, to make sure this never happens again!

But You Had Fun, Right?  I had a wonderful time, even though I only sold two books.  I chatted with friends; made new ones; handed out promotional items.....maybe I've even sold a book or two online.  And best of all, Villanova won the NCAA tournament Monday night, even though I was hoping they'd go up against Syracuse, rather than UNC.  It was still a fantastic game!

Here's a few pictures from the weekend:

Pamela Horner has written about a 10 y/o boy who travels back in time to George Rogers Clark:)

Teddi Robinson, who needed a hug every morning:)

Carol Preflatish, who tolerated my desire not to leave Shooters until after the Villanova/Oklahoma game, even though the score was 95-51!

Floyd Root, who very nicely agreed to let me tag along with him on the trip:)

Tony Acree, who gave a mini Social Media workshop, and who seemed to appreciate my input:)

Frank Hall, our wonderful host for the weekend!

The Romance Queens, Mysti Parker, myself, and Carol Preflatish:)

Stephen Zimmer, founder of Imaginarium, and myself:)

1 comment:

Liz Flaherty said...

Glad it was fun. I hope the hotel gets things straightened out.