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A place for Get Rich Slowly readers to ask questions
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 27, 2009 9:29 pm 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
CrankyBolt wrote:
However I am putting $250 a week into the EM fund, or generally about $1,000 a month. To fully have 6 months of my gross income I would need $42,000 dollars in there. That number seems insurmountable to me. It really does.


Usually the aim is for six months of expenses to be covered by the EM, not gross income. From your previous posts, your spending is


Automatically Withdrawn for Use: $385
Mortgage Payments will be Weekly: $164
Self Tax Escrow: $77
--------
$626 weekly

So six months of expenses is $15,000. Maybe you could make that your next milestone.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 28, 2009 6:27 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
Yes, that seems WAY Easier to pull off. Maybe it would feel a little easier as well if I actually tracked it the way some other people do around here.

EM Fund: $1,500 / $15,000
Car Balance: $23,000 @ 0%
Mortgage Balance: $116,448 @ 5.25%


These are the next things that I am working on. We have no other debt at this time. Goals to boost income:

-Quit Smoking (Will save $108 a month)
-Get rid of Cable (Will save $56 a month)

I guess every month I'll post an update on where we stand with those things, It should help me keep track of things much easier.

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2009 8:58 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
::Shudder::

Okay, it was a very hard phone call to make, but I finally bit the bullet and canceled our Cable TV.....

I feel all weird...

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:14 pm 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:52 am
Posts: 168
Location: Seattle
CrankyBolt wrote:
I guess every month I'll post an update on where we stand with those things, It should help me keep track of things much easier.


How's that going? :p


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 1:48 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
Quitting smoking is making it's rounds. Down to 1 pack a week. (from 2.5).

Cable has been cut!! We are now that odd ball family without cable TV.

It feels weird, mostly because we grew up with it, and well, my wife and her family were some of the first people with it. So, we are kinda wandering around randomly blinking.....

It's good though, between Hulu, Netflix, PS3, and the Interwebs, we've been able to keep everything we want to watch... only at the low low cost of NOT $56 extra a month :P.

It's not the biggest amount of savings, but every bit counts right?

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:02 pm 

Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 4:56 pm
Posts: 50
curious why you changed yourEmergency fund goal from 20k to 15 k?

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2009 8:24 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
Because after some of my bills got lowered and we cut some corners around the house, 6 month of expenses for us comes out to just over 15k.

Current E. Fund is: $2,554 / $15,000

So it's going up...

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2010 10:05 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
Okay, so lets look back at 2009 when I started all of this:

EM Fund sits at 1 month: $3,300
Medical Bills all paid off.
No Roth IRA however $11,000 in retirement contributions.
Mortgage Balance sits at: $114,900 (Down from $121,000).
Property Tax Escrow will be fully funded this year.
Consolidated all extra banks down to Credit union and ING.
Went on 2 vacations without using any credit.
Canceled Cable TV.
Trimmed down and consolidated all bills wherever possible. $5 here, $10 there. Lowered Insurance.
Dealt with 3 Emergencies that tapped into EM Fund. (2 Medical, 1 New Car needed)

All in all, considering at the start of 2009 I had 0 savings, living pay check to pay check. I would say it's a huge step in the right direction. I'm going to be spending Jan. doing a recount of all bills and expenses for budget re balancing. I know for a fact we are going to have to put in some "fun" money because we kinda got burnt out. However, here is what is coming up in 2010:

Goals:
Save another 1 Month EM fund.
Pay for an upcoming Surgery for wife completely off.
Pay for 1 Vacation.
Budget in Pre-school for 3 year old.
Continue on Minimum Car Payments $365 /mo
Continue Prepaying Mortgage. $340 extra / mo
Get Life Insurance.
Make a Will.
Set Aside $1,500 for one vacation.

I'm not exactly sure what I'm going to do with my Tax Refund yet. I'm either going to put it directly into the EM fund for extra padding and bring it up to $6,600 right off the bat so at the end of the year I'll have $9,900 in EM fund for 3 full months.

Or, I might use it to ensure that I pay off the Surgery. However, we are going to have to wait until we see the total cost first. Now, an interesting opportunity I have at work is to try and save my vacation time of 20 days I get and only use 10 of them through out the year. At the end of the year, I can cash in the other 10 for an extra $1,313. Sounds good on paper but that's only being paid 1/2 of that amount of time. (Vacation days cashed in are = to 1/2 value). Short of the surgery the only funding goals I have this year are to get EM fund up by 1 month, maybe 2 more months and Prepay Mortgage down more.

I'm still not looking at tackling the car payment down at this time because of the 0% interest on it. I would much rather get savings up and Mortgage down first at this time. I get angry every month when I see how much interest I'm paying on the mortgage so that's the biggest que that I'm the type of person who needs that to be gone or to the point where I pay more principal than interest each month.

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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 Post subject: Re: Cranky's attempt at a budget/introduction
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:06 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
So, I'm getting more back from taxes than expected. $4,300.

Currently I have $3,600 in my EM fund. (1 month = $2,900). I take it the best choice here would be to apply this tax refund directly to the EM fund? I was thinking sticking in 1 full months in the fund, and using the rest to pay off some smaller bills we have (misc. medical expenses and some dental work) but those bills could also easily be paid by my standard monthly income.

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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 Post subject: Re: Cranky's attempt at a budget/introduction
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:21 am 

Joined: Wed Oct 07, 2009 4:16 pm
Posts: 959
I think you should pay all of the misc debts, the money that you could've used from your paycheck could just go to savings later on.

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Be what you want to attract.


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 Post subject: Re: Cranky's attempt at a budget/introduction
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:31 am 

Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 7:35 am
Posts: 1148
Location: Maryland
Go green! hee hee.
Do the misc. bills add up to 4300? I would pay some of those, and put the rest in the Emergency acount. That way you get rid of the bills coming in (save paper), and add to your savings.

I don't recall; do you have retirement savings? That's also an option for a few bucks.


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 Post subject: Re: Cranky's attempt at a budget/introduction
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2010 1:57 pm 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
I have a pension plan and an annuity through my work. I don't contribute anything myself, my employer does it all. Ends up being around $9,884 per year for the Annuity (It's in a mutual fund with $45,000 currently in it) and the Pension plan if I have 30 years in pays an additional $1,000 a month once I retire.

The misc. bills add up to $439 ;). Just regular living expenses, nothing major, no interest on them, just know I have them this month. I could make it normally by putting less into savings.

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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 Post subject: Re: Cranky's attempt at a budget/introduction
PostPosted: Fri Jan 29, 2010 3:37 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 1:35 pm
Posts: 444
Location: USA
Cranky, looks like you guys have a firm foundation and are building on it. I think it's great where talking about lowering restaurant bills, and wife starts cooking more, sounds like you two are working like a team.

I really don't have much specific to add.
The things that have recently helped me is reading all your worth and figuring out how much I spend on fixed expenses (needs), wants, and saving. It then gives you pointers to balance it out. Also the thing that has made me calmer about financial issues is to track the categories, so I have averages for the different categories 2007- on. That gave me a handle of how much were recurring expenses, and how much sh*t happens (unpredicted) expenses there are in a given year. To give a rough estimate, say you found out by averaging there are 4K in holy crap stuff every year, to build that in either emergency fund or even regular checking fund so that once it is put in place, not so upsetting.


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 Post subject: Re: Cranky's attempt at a budget/introduction
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2010 8:23 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:19 pm
Posts: 1721
Location: Ottawa, Canada
I'd be inclined to recommend the Dave Ramsey approach. That is, I'd use the entire $4,000+ refund to pay down non-mortgage debt. Whether its medical bills, the car, or whatever else. Dave would recommend only keeping $1,000 in your emergency fund, but it's clearly an important safety blanket for you, and you seem to have a well-thought-out plan, so I wouldn't advise doing anything as drastic as draining your emergency fund down to $1,000. I think you should pause it where it is, and direct extra cash to paying off other debts, then resume building up the emergency fund.


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 Post subject: Re: Cranky's attempt at a budget/introduction
PostPosted: Mon Feb 15, 2010 10:45 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:42 am
Posts: 269
We ended up putting $3,300 into our ING emergency fund bringing it up to $7,000.
We payed off some things with the rest (literally less than $300).

And the rest just went to cushion our checking account.

Now with our EM fund where it's at, by the end of the year my goal is to have it at $9,900 (3 full months without unemployment or life style changes).

So the rest of our savings now are stockpiling up for some medical bills and one vacation which we know we will have in the future. It will be so nice to just pay those completely the moment we get them.

AFTER that.... it will be time to debate IRA's / Attack on Mortgage / Save for Car.

_________________
"Look, the people you are after are the people you depend on. We cook your meals, we haul your trash, we connect your calls, we drive your ambulances. We guard you while you sleep. Do not... f*** with us. " --Tyler Durden


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