GRS Home  Forum Home
Bank Rates Center
   Savings Account Rates
   Money Market Rates
   Highest CD Rates
Insurance Rates Center
  Auto           Health
   Life              Home
Mortgage Rates Center
  Mortgage Rates
  Mortgage Quotes

Last visit was:
A place for Get Rich Slowly readers to ask questions
and exchange ideas
It is currently Sat Aug 23, 2014 12:54 pm




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 13 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: This year's financial goals.
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2007 5:48 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
Well, I'm a 22 year old student in Australia. I have been following this for ages, and thought I'd finally post as a bit of motivation for myself to not cut down on my goals for the year.


Goals for this year:
    -super* for 06/07 $1000: $900 saved, will send a cheque with my next pay. (Will bring my super balance to ~$3000)
    -super for 07/08 $1000: will be paid with my scholarship payment in September
    -holiday to cairns ~$700: nothing saved yet
    -sept uni games $500 : nothing saved yet, possibility of fundraising to meet some of this cost
    -oct trip to Melb $300: nothing saved yet
    -xmas trip to Melb $400: nothing saved yet
    -xmas presents $100: nothing saved yet

    -pay off $1600 credit card at an average of $100/week

    -earn $1000 this year on top of Youth Allowance/uni tutoring job
    -> will allow me to end the year at $0 not counting HECS. Any extra will go towards an emergency fund.


The superannuation is more important than the credit card debt at the moment because if I contribute $1000 a year, I will get a $1500 low income co-contribution, so I intend to do that as long as I qualify for it. I'm planning to do some hospitality shifts over the July holidays, and I should be working fulltime in December, so I'm pretty sure I'll meet the extra $1000 goal. I also worked out that when I graduate next year I will have a $40,000 HECS debt (= 2 degrees plus one semester overseas, so not unreasonable). Of course, this isn't a big deal because it only has to be paid back by a slightly higher tax rate once I hit $36,000 income, so it's not part of my planning at the moment. In the longer term, I'm planning to go overseas for a couple months after I graduate, I'm still working out the best way to afford this and how to work it in with getting a job (find a job and put it off for a couple months, or look when I get back?). My current motivational problem is that if I just put off the 07/08 super payment till next year's scholarship payment (I get $1000 per semester), I would have that extra $1000 available this year and not have to look for extra work, but that would make it harder to save for the post graduation travel. Hopefully having the commitment up in public will help!



*Possibly unnecessary explicatory note: superannuation is retirement funds, I think like American IRAs. The Australian financial year is July 1 - June 30.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 7:16 am 

Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2007 8:13 am
Posts: 211
I think it's pretty remarkable that you're saving for super- contributions while you're still in uni. You should do updates every quarter or perhaps more frequently to keep track of your progress.

Good luck!


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 4:09 pm 

Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2007 9:37 pm
Posts: 99
Location: Ottawa
Having a plan is a big part of the whole process. Even if you end up having to delay the extra $1000 you are still doing great.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 7:36 pm 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
Well, yesterday I got a bank cheque for $1000 that I'll send off today for the super. I decided that I can always not contribute next semester, if I need the money, but I can't decide later to contribute for this year.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 10:32 pm 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
Well, some progress and some regression.

My trip to Cairns ended up costing $1350 instead of $700, but it was an awesome enough holiday that I think it was worth it. And this week I discovered that I should receive $750 in a tax refund because I'm eligible for some concessions I hadn't know about, so I can cover the holiday cost (mostly on my credit card :/ ) with that windfall(not a good strategy for the future, I know, but it works for this case!)

I'm also working Friday and Saturday nights over July at my old restaurant, which is both earning me extra money and reducing the occasions for spending what I have in pubs. This money is going directly to save for Uni Games, as I found out that the $550 (inc refundable $50 deposit) for that is due in weekly payments starting in a fortnight. It doesn't look like we're doing any fundraising for them, but we might sell some chocolates later.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 6:08 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
Well, I noticed I start all my posts with 'well' :)

I have finished paying $540 for uni games, and I have also received my $750 tax return, and now I owe $2250 on my credit card. Fortunately I have no more large expenses planned for the year, and I should be able to put away ~$200/fortnight on the cc. I may or may not use this semester's scholarship payment for the credit card instead of super.

In better news, I got a fairly prestigious summer research job. It pays about the same as I get for my uni job, and goes over the entire summer. A financial drawback is that it's in Adelaide (although they will cover my flights and initial ~weeks accommodation), so I have to either cover two rents or move out of my current place for summer. Even with two rent payments, I should break even, and it's definitely worth doing.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 6:50 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Apr 29, 2007 3:00 pm
Posts: 411
Location: Chicago
I don't know how the rules work there, but can you sublet your apartment for the summer while you're away? I know several people who have done this during summer breaks. As moving can be expensive and then trying to find somewhere when you come back adds to the stress.

_________________
http://www.morydd.net/
Father of http://AidenThomas.net Dec 10, 2004-Dec 15, 2004 and http://peanut.morydd.net June 12, 2008


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 7:08 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
I'm thinking about that - I actually rent a room in a friends house, which makes it both easier and more awkward - he's moved away, I don't know if I'll have any housemates before summer, and the place is furnished with his stuff, so I'm not entirely comfortable with the idea of leaving some unknown with all his things.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2007 10:09 pm 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
I ended up using this semester's scholarship payment on the credit card, and it's now down to $550 (I'm also expecting the return of my $50 bond from uni games, so it'll be $500). I should be able to pay it off by the end of October! After that I need to save up $500 by Christmas time, should be ok especially as I've arranged to move out of my place over summer - I've now got two housemates who can look after it, and one of them is conveniently moving out when I get back so I can move back in.

At the moment I don't think I'll be going to Melbourne until Christmas, which is sad - I had been planning to go down for my high school reunion, but now I'm busy that weekend (and most others). I may still be able to go for a few days on my way to Adelaide, but it depends how hard it is to organise around starting my job.

My bike is falling apart (braking on a steep hill involves shoe leather) and I've decided that although I can hang on for this semester, there's no way it'll last me through next year. Fortunately I've just signed up for a medical trial that will pay me $300, and I'll use that money to buy a new (or good used) bike when I get back from Adelaide next March.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 08, 2007 7:22 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
For about an hour this morning after I got paid, my credit card was actually at zero! Then I had to pay the gas bill, because my landlord suddenly decided that he wasn't going to pay it (it's in his name, so he'd been handling the bill and then getting money from us - fair enough, but a little more warning would have been nice - it's due tomorrow!). So now it's $85 on the cc (my housemates owe me 2/3 of that, and I'm waiting to get my $50 unigames bond refunded still), and I have $100 in my bank account which is going to pay for some post-exam drinking over the next two weeks. I've also booked and paid for a flight to Melbourne in two weeks time - I worked out that if I went down the week before I have to go to Adelaide, that week's rent would cover the extra plane flight.
In more good news, next fortnight I'll get two paycheques and won't have to pay rent, so I'll have a buffer of money to spend in Melbourne and move to Adelaide with (I won't have any period of not getting paid, because I'm on Youth Allowance - it goes down when I'm working and up when I'm not).

Progress on goals from the first post:
Oct (now Nov) trip to Melb: paid for the flight, the other $150 will come out of next fortnight's paycheque.
Super (07/08) : haven't done anything towards that, will start allocating money to it now the cc is done.
Christmas: have put aside $100 for presents, still need $400 for flights etc
Uni games, Cairns: over and paid for
cc: paid!

I checked all my super balances over the last few weeks, and I currently have $2700, and am expecting $1500 gov't contribution around february. Not too bad!

To meet my original goals (get the super amount by end of the year) I'd have to save ~$1400 over December, which seems a little steep. I don't think I'll make that, but I'll wait to adjust it when I find out what my expenses in Adelaide are like. The medical study fell through because I'm leaving the city before it finishes, so that new bike may or may not happen next year. The old one's doing fine for now anyway. I'm not sure about the post-graduation travel now: I think I'm going to just spend money next year, on uni games again, random holidays in Aus, and perhaps a trip with my soccer club that is unfortunately going to be around my thesis due date. Then I'll (hopefully!!) get some graduate job, and get a year or so experience and move overseas/to Melbourne.


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 27, 2008 6:35 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
Wow, it's been a while since I updated this.

So, my trip to Adelaide - great fun, shared a cheap flat with a guy doing the same summer job, ended up subletting my place in Brisbane which was good.
-paid off my credit card at the end of December
-saved up about $1000 in ING by June
-took a couple holidays to Melbourne to see family
-used my semester 1 scholarship payment for a $1000 voluntary super contribution '07-'08, = ~$7000 total.
-used about half my ING funds for textbooks, stuff and a trip to my sisters wedding, now it's only $450
-bought flights for my end of year soccer trip and trip home, on my credit card but should be paid off with tomorrows pay
-should be able to get ING back up to ~$1000 in the next few weeks, and then I'm expecting a scholarship payment to make that $2000
-would also be good to have a couple hundred available to spend when I go away with soccer in October, so I'll put that aside over the next couple months as well.

I'm graduating in December, holiday plans are on hold because I'm going to stay with my parents for a few weeks and get my wisdom teeth out, then I don't know when I'll start my new job - presumably in January, see if my new company is interested in letting me have a few weeks off and start in February :) I'm still interviewing but it looks like I'll have at least a couple of options, all paying what seem like ridiculous sums of money, most of them will involve corporate-paid relocation away from Brisbane. Because I'm going to go stay with my parents, I'll have minimal expenses before I move to wherever I'm going to work, so I'm not really worried about not earning anything over December.

I won't decide whether to make a voluntary super contribution for the '08-'09 financial year till I know what I'll be earning in '09, if I'm going to go over the income limit for a co-contribution it doesn't seem worth it.

Phew! So, overall, I'm about where I intended to be. With the lure of megabucks next year I haven't really worried about saving much this year, it doesn't seem worth it :)


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 5:35 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
Very nearly finished uni! (I'm studying for an exam tomorrow as I write this... :D )

I'm not sure what job I'll have next year, but the two possibilities remaining are both in new cities, with relocation packages that should cover the move and immediate living costs, and not starting until February. At the moment I have $900 on my credit card that will be paid off in about a fortnight and $2000 in ING which I am planning to use towards a holiday in January. (With luck and a scholarship I'll have another $1000 towards it). (It would be smarter to keep some cash for when I start the new job...maybe I'll put part of the trip on credit so I have cash left? My mum hates this idea, but I figure once I start work a chunk of spare time will be harder to come by than a chunk of money, so I might as well take advantage of the free month).

One of my potential jobs is overseas. This is introducing a complication, as I don't know how that would affect my eligibility to
a) make one more super voluntary contribution and get the govt co-contribution
b) perhaps start one of those FHSA* accounts, get the gov't contribution, and leave it earning interest while I live overseas. (If I stay in Aust I think I will definitely start one of these next year - if I never buy a house it'll just roll into super).

I THINK I would be able to do both of these, as I will have been living/earning money in Australia for half the year, so that should make me a resident for tax purposes for the 08/09 financial year. And even though I might start earning enough to reduce the co-contribution, I guess that means I'll be earning enough that I can afford to chuck an extra $1000 into super anyway, right?

Also, I'm starting to wonder how much money I'm going to need for the whole 'becoming a real job person', especially with the new city aspect. Can't start looking at exact numbers until I know which job I'll get, which is just another reason I'm on edge waiting!


*New australian tax-advantaged First Home Savers Accounts, with govt co-contributions (although less than the super cocontributions)


Top
Offline Profile   
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 6:36 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
I got a job in Seattle! I haven't got all the formal details yet, but some things I'm pretty sure of
- won't start til late Feb, so awesome international trip is ON, [unless I have to be in Australia to get a visa?]
- comes with health insurance
- comes with relocation deal
- won't have to make HECS payments while overseas, but probably a good idea to put aside the amount anyway, then when I move back to Aus I can pay it all upfront and get 10% off. I think my HECS debt comes to ~AU$40,000. In $US that's nothing!
- no state income tax in WA? So someone told me that my overall taxes will come to ~25% of my income, I have no idea but that sounds like a good figure to work with.

I wonder how the 401k stuff works, as a foreigner? I presume HR will be able to help me with all of that, they relocate a lot of people to the US. I'll also get temp. accommodation for a couple months when I arrive, which is good because obviously I have no idea where I want to live or what kind of places there are. And I presume they'll help me figure out taxes, I'll have to file in Aus for '07/08 and the US for 2008. Now I can start figuring out cost of living over there and stuff too...exciting!

I realised that I still have two super accounts floating around, and obviously once I move away nobody will be paying into either of them, so I'm going to consolidate the MLC account into my UniSuper account, which has lower fees, a clearer website with more electronic access available, and a wider range of investment options. My gov't co-contribution will be going into the MLC account sometime in Jan, however, so I'll have to wait til that arrives to transfer it over. But then I can just abandon it til I come home, and with any luck, some of the money will still be there when I get back :) I'll have to check the rules and maybe make one more voluntary contribution.

Also, a friend of mine who works for a bank said it isn't worth starting an FHSA account at the moment, as they all have pitifully low interest rates. I'll have to look into it more, I think.

Maybe I should start a new journal..titled something like jac's life in the states!


Top
Offline Profile   
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 13 posts ]  Moderators: kombat, bpgui, JerichoHill, Fiscal Fitness Moderator


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Adsense [Bot] and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Theme created StylerBB.net & kodeki