I've been very good about my budget. I came up with a plan in 2007 that I'd add up how much I spent that year, then in 2008 cut that number in half to make my budget, then cut the 2008 number in half again. Once 2010 rols aorund I'll make my budget only 10% of what my 2007 budget was.
For the record I spent right around $6K for SW alone in 2007.
So 2008's budget was $3K. I ended up spending about $2700, so I actually came under budget. However I started collecting Halo action figures, so I did go over my total toy budget, just not the SW specific budget.
The SW budget for 2009 is a paltry $1,500. So far I'm doing very well in that area with about $600 spent so far. I do expect a large rush towards the end of the year, so that number will definitely climb. Other than SW I primarily only collect Halo toys and Transformer Movie toys (with some scant exceptions). All told I've spent about $1200 between SW, Halo and TF. Not too bad for me.
In 2010, I'm hoping to spend no more than $600 on SW. That may be tough depending on the big vehicle of the year. Thankfully I'm all but cured of large army building, only building squads of 4-6 figures. One exception I'll make this year is the Gungan warrior of which I want 40 of them. So that will be a significant chunk of my budget for this year (2009).
Halo is fairly cheap, but for the exclusives and even then not all that bad. There is a wave of figures every 3 months or so. I preorder the mass retail ones and "hunt" for the exclusives.
TF is insanely easy to collect and I can see myself dropping this collection soon. I'll keep what I have, but when the 3rd movie comes out, I'll be much more discerning about what I collect from it, rather than getting all of the Hasbro figures.
I have a huge storage unit, that while filling up, still affords me to buy the big items knowing I have the space for them.
The eventual plan is to build dioramas for my SW stuff. Large ones. I've discussed this before, so I won't bore with the details yet again. Not sure how I'll eventually display the Halo stuff, though I have a couple of ideas floating around. TF stuff will likely just be in bookshelves displayed in a vague movie scene sequence.
I've enjoyed collecting most of the time over the last 15+ years of modern collecting. Having just turned 40 this past Friday though has me thinking yet again that it's edging ever so closer to the day I'll just stop collecting altogether. That thought has been in my mind for the past few years, now I see it as more and more a reality. The time for the torch to be passed is near at hand, so to speak, with regards to me anyway.