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Life stinks sometimes.

July 8, 2016

I was happily looking forward to a tax refund this year, based on the fact that:

  1. My employer until May overpaid me as they pay by the month and I didn’t finish May with them; I obviously repaid the overpayment but it means I was taxed more than I would otherwise have been.
  2. I then started a higher-paying job for a month, where they withheld at a rate assuming I’d been getting paid that much all financial year.

So I plugged my figures into MyTax (by the by, it’s an EXCELLENT tool for uncomplicated tax returns) and could not work out why it was saying I OWED the ATO well over $1000. I put my thinking cap on and the only answer seemed to be that my former employer had not been withholding my tax correctly.

Suffice to say, one very pissed-off phone call later, I discover that even though I had ticked on my PAYG withholding declaration that I have a HECS debt (HR confirmed this for me), they had not selected that option on their payroll software, so extra tax wasn’t being withheld for that. NOT HAPPY – I budgeted within what I was getting paid, assuming Payroll were doing it correctly. $2200 in HECS repayments scuppered my tax refund and have left me with a debt that I have no hope of paying off in a lump sum.

Moral of the story: check and double-check! I went straight to my current Payroll person and asked nicely if she could double-check it was correct here (it is). I honestly could have cried though, I’ve been working so hard to live within my means only to discover it wasn’t my means after all!

Add to that a big car repair bill and our joint savings for the council rates in August are also decimated.

I put in the figures and as long as utility bills don’t go over the estimated amount (and since I did that budget, the water bill came in $30 under estimate), we stick STRICTLY to the $150/week grocery budget, and no additional expenses, we will have enough for the rates by August. No takeaway, no household purchases, if the pets need food that will have to come within the grocery budget.

Coles sent me another four-week FlyBuys offer, spend $110 for four weeks to get 10000 points. I’m in two minds, the first week is actually 10 days so we could just skip Coles this week or do very minimal so that we can do a bigger one for the Week 1 shop, but it would only leave us $40 to spend at Spudshed each week.

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