Welcome back. I do these savings and debt reports every month (and have for about 5 years). I dont do these to brag at all (and if you look at some of the ones from 2009 and 2010, that would be very clear). I do these every month to show all the awesome readers that I have that it IS possible to turn the ship around and start doing your finances right. Obviously, it takes hard work, and dedication to your own success, but it is all totally worth it. There are a lot of opportunities that you can take advantage of when you’re not struggling with debt, and each opportunity becomes bigger than the last as you continue on your journey to debt freedom.
June was a pretty crazy one, with me starting my new job and traveling to Vermont for the spartan death race. All of those changes, plus still adjusting to caring for our baby left not a whole lot of time for finances this month, but I still was able to take some action and get all of our accounts consolidated and hopefully make things easier for us going forward.
In other news, I have finally started the post about changing my diet, but it will be long and will take a while. It has been started though, and it has some great stuff in there (so far).
Mortgage $ 109,201 (-$561). Just the normal payment here. This note goes down by about 550/mo, which for now is acceptable. I think we will bump up the payments on this once the student loan is gone, but I’m not sure exactly how we are going to do that. I’ve considered paying extra, as well as switching to bi-weekly payments (and paying extra on those bi-weekly) but there are a lot of things going on right now and I kind of want to wait till the dust settles before I lock in something.
Great Lakes Loan $2,079 (-$400) I said that I was going to pay this completely off this month, but unfortunately never got around to doing it. Things just got rather crazy with our cash flow, and I wanted to make sure that we could handle it this month. I have moved from getting paid once a month to bi-weekly, and have gone from paying about 200 dollars per month in heath insurance (for the family) to almost a thousand. That coupled with all the savings account maneuvering I did this month just made me put this on pause until july. We have the cash (and the desire) and I’m just waiting for all the dust to settle, so to speak.
Total Debt: $111,280
We are down $948 from last month. Im satisfied with this, because I focused more this month on getting out savings account situation sorted out and ready to turn (back) into something that was easily managed and automatically done for us every month. We still have the cash to retire the student loan, and I hope to do that in July. I have also been exploring some strategies to pay down the house note, and have been talking with my wife about what she wants to do and our future goals.
The major shakeup that I have been toying with doing was finally executed this month. A while back, I wrote asking people where they kept their emergency fund, mainly because I was tired of getting slaughtered on low interest rates. I fully expect this low rate environment to last well into 2015, so I was looking around for something with a bit higher ROI and was willing to take on a small amount of risk to get there. I was also seeking to simplify our accounts, as I felt like we had a few too many accounts at a few too many financial institutions. I knew this was going to be a process (and honestly is not quite over yet) but we are about through.
Now, instead of a whole bunch of accounts and a whole bunch of banks, we have 1 account, with 1 institution and 1 spreadsheet to manage it all. We are all moved into vanguard for all of this, and I’ll break down where the funds from each account went. Even though we track them separate in the spreadsheet, they are technically all one account according to vanguard.
Unfortunately, because of all the things up in the air with switching jobs and changing banks and migrating funds, we didnt contribute much (any) to savings this month. I didnt want any money to get stuck in the middle of wires, so I stopped all our withdraws to the bank before I closed the accounts and did the transfer, and didnt get the new auto withdraws up in time. Such is life I guess.
If you are curious how we did it, we ended up putting 5k in the Vanguard Money Market Fund (VMMXX) because we could easily transfer it to our checking account if need be in the case of an emergency, and put the rest in vanguards total bond fund (VBMFX). I have since set up our auto deposits to the money market, and will go in there once every quarter or so and move some cash from there into the bond fund so that we keep a stable amount in the money market fund.
Kid Savings – This was the account we established for a future child in like, 2010. We ended up not needing this because our daughters care got picked up by the government (thanks guys) because of her super-low birthweight. So, we hardly ended up spending anything on her birth, etc and ended up with a lot more cash for her than we thought. We took 50% of her account balance (the kid is RICH!) and opened a 529 for her, and have the other 50% in cash for now. Once all the bills get settled up (we are still arguing with medicaid). Once everything is settled, we will move 1/2 of the remaining 50% into the 529, and start building this account again for (potential) future children.
House This got lumped into everything else as well, and didnt grow at all in june.
Emergency Fund Holding steady at 10k. So thankful for the work that we have put in to get this amount. This is about 3 months of expenses if both of us lose our job (very unlikely) and probably wont get touched at all if we suffer one job loss.
Vacation Same as above here. Hopefully going to tap into this in 2015 – we are talking about a pretty big trip.
Total Savings: $ 17,000
Savings numbers are down, but that’s because I’m not counting the 529 that we opened for our daughter. Overall our numbers are up slightly, but only because of market gains – we didnt make any savings contributions in june.