Austerity 101

Well, I don’t know where to begin but maybe sharing a personal perspective and experience will do. I earn a little over 100K monthly and most people will argue this is just about what one would need to make financial strides in life, Right? Wrong! KRA along with NSSF and NHIF walk away with about 30K and then there is that pension scheme. Combined this sets me back approximately 35K!! Enyewe kulipa ushuru ni kutegemewa. With approximately 65K remaining, I pay my investment dues to Chama and the Sacco which sets me back a further 5K. Well, I should have about 60K remaining by now, except that I am servicing two loans, one I took to buy buloti in kitengela so bank retains 20K, and the second a bitter and regrettable university loan that I basically squandered in campus…so HELB takes a 5K bite from my pie every month. I am barely limping when the 15K-house-rent lightening strikes! At this point I am already wishing for a pay hike but that will also push my salary to the next tax band. Dreams for buying a car, building a house, pimping my house all gone, squashed! it’s like the system plays “salary crush” with my earnings aaaAAAAARRRGHHHHH!!! BUT…BUT I got a weapon AUSTERITY… actually austerity 101…

  1. Do you wake up at 7am and pay maximum fare! well I don’t. Fare in Nairobi escalates exponentially from 5am to 8am, I am off before the touts can see customers clearly…just in time to download my copy of gatheti and velamma!
  2. Do you board vehicles at the stage? I don’t. The stage is an expensive place to board a car…save 10 to 30 bob by taking gari za mlengo! if you can take a walk and lose those kilos na kautambi, the better.
  3. Do you buy lunch at work for approximately 150-500 Ksh? I dont… I have been there and done my homework and if it’s beef you’re hoping for, get ready to chew and swallow donkey meat! your safe bet would be fish, chicken or roast goat meat… and we all know the cost. I carry my lunch, hotel food is crap!!
  4. Do you regularly eat out? I don’t. with all this cholera everywhere I fancy preparing proper and surprisingly cost saving meals in the house.
  5. Do you wish for a healthy diet? well I do. Avoiding meat and eating veges kama sukuma na cabbage will reduce your chances for developing lifestyle diseases. use salt sparingly and learn to skip that sugar section in the supermarket. Don’t overcook veges they lose their nutritive value and you waste gas.
  6. Do you pay regular atm charges that cost something between 100-400 ksh per month? I don’t. I withdraw all money I’ll need in a month at a go.
  7. Do you subscribe to some regular cellular internet costing something between 500ksh-3000ksh in a month? I dont subscribe to cellular internet! I use wifi…
  8. Do you keep some nagging good-for nothing bitch who you have no future with…well, vaseline is actually good for something! But kama una wife material shikilia
  9. Have you subscribed to pay TV. My question to you is why???
  10. How about the Gym? Are you a subscriber? Again my question to you is why???
    There are many more but every month I do take 20K to a fixed income account somewhere… and life is more meaningful…I’ll update some more with time!

100k Na bado unawika?

It’s a good plan…but I have a feeling you are mean even to yourself. Am sure you don’t use vaseline njeri, you use a cheaper and not so readily available Arimi’s.
Enjoy life once in a while coz money will never be enough. Na ujenge kwa hio buloti.


35k minus rent 15k = 20k. Which you save.

Do you walk to work and grow all your food?

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Am aporoaching middle age and i have learnt that:-)

  1. Money will never be enough. Unalua earning 100k namimi nilioa earning 15k kwa mhindi. Na bado haujaia.
  2. What u fear is what will rule over u. If u think that when u r mean with yoyr selve u save money u will have a better life later u are wrong. I have seen guys earning 300k in our workplace and some earning 100k is leaving a better life.
  3. Live one day at a time. Dont fear being broke. It doesnt kill it makes u better. Leave everything to God. He will show more opportunities undet your nose which u couldnt see with your naked eyes.

What if you are making close to 250K net and live hand to mouth? Shida ni pombe ama ni nini?

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250k? Weka breakdown ya matumizi tukwambie mahali zinpotelea.

Depending on your own strengths and self-efforts? You will just end up stressed! Depend on the Lord to lead and guide you, and you will experience peace and good success. (see Jeremiah 17:8)


I can only account for rent 15,000, stima 3000, net 3000. Your’s truly has a stipend of 10k. I give out like a K every other day for meats,fish or chicken and fresh veggies. The rest sijui zinaenda wapi. I forget I ride cabs when moving most of the time, especially while drinking which is like 4 times a week and Gym 5k.

The rest ziko kwa bank


I wish I could grow my own food, and walk to work… with my job I get side per-diems, which average about 40k-50k every three months. That is split into three and takes care of my daily expenses for the next three months (I average 9K in daily expenses excluding rent of course).

You are right… I know that first hand… I used to go broke every 20th of the month and wasn’t even servicing both loans not even the HELB one (God I wish I had…too many fines there)… I used to wish for more but not any more i got austerity!! I haven’t gone broke in the last one year (not once), I always have surplus. I have colleagues who make twice as much as I do (some have families) who I loan cash to almost every month. Not that I know their financial situation through and through but yeah cash will never be enough.

Where can I get that Arimi’s it must be more suited for the job :D. I don’t feel mean with myself… I am actually enjoying living a fulfilling life with realistic goals I can achieve. But I have to mention I am a firm believer of healthy living, self-sustenance and environmental protection. for instance to live healthy you really have to consider adding more of plant protein, vegetables and fruits to your diet and less of animal protein and moderate use of carbohydrates and that comes at a lower cost. You will also have to consider doing exercises, and what better option is there than jogging, playing games or taking a walk to work (if possible) and that also comes at a lower cost. If you stand for environmental sustainability, you also have to adopt the re-use, reduce and recycle options which also come at a lower cost. Mathematically, I am ten months away from buying a car (I know with green house gas emissions that doesn’t stand for environmental sustainability) but there has to be a boundary anyway and self-reward.

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Phew! Tough one! To identify the holes into which your money is disappearing you’ll have to first do some hard work: record all your expenditure, I mean write it down, daily for a month. Record all expenditure, hata kama ni ile 10-bob unalipa kwa choo ya kanjú, iandike pia. Daily for one month. As fate would have it, today is 1st June so there’s no better time like the present to get going.

You may also choose to install some money management apps in your phone and/or and actually use them e.g. Money Monitor (phone), GnuCash (comp), etc to aid in expenditure tracking and control.

nina kama 3k, work on some ventures where I earn weekly. The 250k was May’s income. Since Jan on Mpesa alone I have withdrawn over 1.1m.

As for lunch, I used to carry as well but realised that I am missing a lot because I am not networking, and you mostly network with other professionals outside your work environment mostly over lunch. Trust me, guys have moved up the pay scale over lunch breaks.
Just look at the 150 lunch as a networking investment


Damn, my austerity measure 101 is to use less and less mpesa every month.
Boss una doh!!!

uko how old?



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N0 6??
That’s not practical boss, emergencies occur, a relative or close friend needs money urgently, what to do? Unless you tell us you lead a perfect life.