Friday, January 3, 2014

2014 Financial Update

The last time I posted about finances was in November (if you missed it, you can check it out here.) Since we are starting the New Year, I figured now would be a good time to share where we are. Also, we just met one of the goals today, and I’m really excited to tell you!!

Here are our current financial goals:

Goal #1: Pay off student loan by February of 2015.

Goal #2: Pay off credit card and car by June of 2014.

Goal #3: Pay off credit line by January of 2014.  MET!!!!  :)   :)   :)

Goal #4: Have $3,000 in savings by end of 2014.

Goal #5: Pay off couch loan by July of 2014.

Goal #6: Be 100% debt-free by February of 2015.

Let me tell you, it feels SO GOOD to finally have one debt item paid off!

So far we are tracking on all of the other goals, except Goal #4. We have a good bit to go if we are going to meet that one, but I’m hoping that we can play catch-up with our tax refund next month. I can’t wait to get everything in there and see what we’ll get back. (We always over-pay with our deduction percentage, so I know we will get a refund. Some people don’t like to do that, but for us, it’s really nice to get that big tax refund in the mail. It’s kind of like putting money in a savings account where we can’t touch it, because we’ll use that money for car repairs, savings, and vacations.)

I also added some things to our budget for 2014...

The first is a monthly date night. Roman and I are really bad about not budgeting for one, so then we only take one when someone gives us a gift card or when Roman makes extra commission for the month. Now we have an actual budget line for date nights in our budget, and my goal is, no matter what, for us to go out on a date. If you’re married, you definitely need to do this!!

The second thing I added is for Roman and me to get $20 a piece each month for whatever we want. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to break the budget so I could buy a new book or a new pair of shoes. Now, I won’t have to because I’ll have that little bit of money each month to spend on whatever catches my eye (without feeling guilty about it.) Now that we are finally making some progress, I feel like this is a good thing to do in order to keep us on track and to keep us from getting frustrated.

I also increased our grocery budget amount. One of the things that Dave Ramsey talks about is if you are consistently going over budget in a certain category, then you probably just need to raise the amount. You can only cut so much before you’ve cut too much and you’ve created a number that is just not realistic, and I think I’ve done that in our grocery budget. I’ve consistently gone over budget with our groceries almost every month, even though I’ve done meal planning and have tried to keep extra un-needed purchases out. So I finally did some re-working and increased that grocery amount for the month to give us some more wiggle room. Hopefully that will do the trick!

If all goes well, then by June of this year (only five more months away!) we will have both my car and the credit card paid off. And then the month after that, we’ll have the couch loan paid off, leaving us only with the student loan. A year from today we will only be one payment away from being 100% debt free. I’m getting pretty excited!!!

“Keep your life free from the love of money, and be content with what you have.” ~Hebrews 13:5

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