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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:55 am 

Joined: Sun Apr 29, 2007 8:11 am
Posts: 1088
Location: Sunny Florida
Quote:
The oven is less than 10 years old.
Part of me feels discouraged. It makes me wonder is this a consequence of buying appliances in the low middle end? All we want is something reliable and functional (don't need the bells and whistles). Is it too much for us to expect a door handle not to fall off? I sound like an old person but I swear appliances used to be more sturdy.


I'm going to say yes to this. We had new middle tier appliances when we moved into our home in 2004. We've replaced the washer/dryer and the dishwasher and the fridge has had two repairs. We did not get rid of the old appliances, rather we put the dishwasher into Rental #1 and the washer and dryer into Rental #2.

Our replacement washer/dryer are high efficiency and we paid quite a bit for them, although they were from an appliance close out center, think floor models, so we got a deal. I've been very happy with them but its only been a year or so.

Our replacement dishwasher is high end and while it works well, when it works, it doesn't always work. The soap dispenser doesn't open on the first cycle at least 50% of the time meaning I have to run it again, it always opens on the second cycle.

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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:56 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Got all the parts for both the fridge door and oven, hubby just needs to "do it".

Running damage for Xmas (frugalistas, prepare to be shocked!):
Xmas lights for tree and house $48.
Dollar stores $50 for wrapping paper, labels and stocking stuffers
27 FIL (books and bath salts)
20 MIL (candles)
$100 for parents in law (group gift) plus possible 1 magazine sub
$54 (photo chistmas cards, and photos for family and friends)
$85 Mom (clothes she picked out).
$100 sister (utilitarian gifts she needs)
$50 Mom, brother, sister food gifts
$78 3 nephew/nieces
$35 niece who lives close
$60 niece and nephew Plus $59 food gifts for brother and extended family
$76 Dad ? 1.75 L Johnny walker Black (plus photos).
$64 hubby (bike lights, shirt, food gifts,used books). May add a gift cert?
$85 DD #1 doll clothes and books (may also get a $20 game from Santa?)
$98, DD #2 doll clothes and accessories, mobigo game (another $10 thing from santa?) - didn't plan this right. There was a couple things I have already purchased was going to reserve for Santa, but the kids saw where the (wrapped) gifts were in the bedroom, throroughly inspected them (number, size). So I may have to get 1 more thing each, "from Santa"
Though I spent more than I intended for a couple people (Mom, sister, Dad) I feel good in that all but a few of the gifts are "sure things" in that they are selected by the recepient, otherwise useful/needed items or cash/food gifts that I feel will be appreciated and used. So I don't feel my money will have been "wasted". The FIL and MIL gifts are high ticket items, but everyone agreed since they have been so generous to get them something nice for Christmas, which will be a gift certificate to somewhere they want to go.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 9:07 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Did end up buying a $17 board game for oldest dd and $11 doll set for youngest DD "from Santa", so they are covered. Only problem is, DH wants to buy them bikes for Christmas. They have bikes but have outgrown them (and possibly their helmets as well). I asked if they could be given as an iou, and shopped for after the holidays.

Unplanned expenses. Entertaining. $100 going to the liquor store, for gatherings we are hosting. And $220 for 2 kitchen chairs. Two of the 6 wooden kitchen chairs have broken. I don't want to get the same type as they didn't last. We do have some mismatched folding chairs we have been using but I wanted chairs that could be kept permanantely round the table. Overkill, but got unpainted aluminum chairs that should last - forever. Only problem is the seat is a little cold on winter mornings...
So, no way around that our checking will be low and our credit card will be high this month. I am thankful other than the stove door haven't had any other unplanned expenses too bad this month.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:03 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Whew, survived Christmas. We had people over a couple times, and that was very enjoyable, so may give my hubby a "pass" regarding taking me out for New Years. Between overscheduled with already penciled in obligations or social occasions and fighting a cold, I did not do my usual routine of planning a number of activities for the kids around Christmas (walks, bird treat making, cookie or other treat making). I also did not space out the present opening. So, they were (especially the youngest) both overwhelmed but in a fit of overstimulation, bored/disappointed with it all. It was too much. But when hubby said we could take the presents back, she was quiet, and has been happily playing with her gifts for the past 2 days. Some lessons. Plan activities OTHER than gift oriented. Also have the children make gifts themselves, or give in some way to others so they can see the joy in giving, not just receiving. Space out the gift opening. Open a few, take a break, open up another few. Otherwise-satiation. We even discussed the extreme, of taking them to a soup kitchen, visiting shut ins, or some other voluntary activity, so they can get a different perspective on other people's experiences during this year, particularly people without resources or family nearby.
In unrelated news, went to Ikea and got the beddinge sofa bed. I and the youngest (and the dog, who wants to make it into his dog bed) like it; husband and oldest not sure. Change is hard. It is always a little sad to get rid of a couch that is almost part of the family. But maybe it's like getting new shoes; it feels funny at first but will start breaking in. And I feel as sense of relief that we have a proper "bed" for visiting guests.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:41 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Delayed gratification is hard. We have the overhang of Xmas and such on our credit card, plus the nice couch still on another card. (The stuff I recently bought at Ikea was paid for by Xmas money -yay!). However, the friend who took me to Ikea is going again on Sunday, and asked if there was anything she could bring back for me. And I started measuring stuff, brainstorming, and ended up coming up with some ways to really help with organization, without a big price tag. So, I have about $260 worth of stuff on my list (expedit tall shelf to store all my art stuff plus a couple boxes to hide computer/electronic peripherals), 47" long pine table I can use as my work table plus use for overflow dining, and for the tv play room, storage containers and a hanging organizer for toy storage). I am pretty excited that I can solve so many problems for what I see as a reasonable price (instead of getting an expensive toy organizer I'm going to use a small lack table plus a bin that fits underneath and stacking plastic bins to go on top, with hanging organizer also in that corner)- but as hubby pointed out, it is too much stuff to ask my friend to get. Dilemma. I asked hubby if maybe we could do our own trip "sometimes" and he said maybe. Maybe I'll see if friend is willing to get storage containers for the play room, and wait for on the home office makeover. I do want to start re-organizing the office so I have my own usable space, but may need to exercise patience.
ps- everyone seems to like the beddinge. It is wide enough for me and the kids to cuddle while watching tv.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:19 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Took 1100 from efund and paid off fridge card. Still have 1100 on fancy couch card. Have 2400! on main credit card. In addition to the $500 Ikea trip, also bought 2 chairs for the kitchen that =$240. I don't regret the futon couch but do regret the chair purchase. If I knew I was going to Ikea I could have saved so much money... Friend wasn't able to get stuff on my list. Husband now reneging on idea of Ikea trip. I took out frustration by spending 3 days de-cluttering and organizing the study and the toy room. I also realized that i've lived with hubby for 20 years. He has 2 dedicated places for his hobbies (art) and a temporary one for his music. Me on the other hand do not have a place for my art hobby, other than stuff in a box. This is a barrier to me doing art; I usually have to clean up the kitchen table to make a place to do art, and I often just end up doing dishes and never get around to the art part. Though the priority this month will be putting little or nothing new on the credit card with the attempt of paying off as much as possible this month, after that my goal will be to create a permanent work space in the study for my art. This place will also double as a place the kids can do homework, and also as overflow dining for when we are entertaining. I will need a light source, storage (bookshelf with boxes), and a table. I can get everything I need for $250 at Ikea, but I may have to do it more expensively locally if that is my only option. But it will wait until the credit card is paid off.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 8:24 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
2012 Jan ingo 4479 outgo 3392 (+1087)
Feb ingo 5500 outgo 5228(+272) (200 appraisal for ins, 650 medical 223,260 camps)
Mar ingo 6537 outgo 4800 (+1737) (343 plane ticket, 511 medical)
Apr ingo 4474, outgo 4908 (-434) (750 for year 1/2 tap lessons, 240 patio table)
May ingo 4273 outgo 4112(+161)(380 semiannual autoins, 300 travel expenses)
June ingo 3761 outgo 4024 (-263) (598 travel expenses inc extra restaurants)
July ingo3779 ingo 4295 (-516) (181 travel, 300 extra food costs, 189 ac repair)
Aug ingo 5875 outgo 5014 (+861) (400 medical, 650 computer+electronics 200? travel costs)
Sep ingo 4033 outgo 4459 (-425), (255 dentist, 160 computer monitor, 250? birthday costs, 200 house stuff (NOT including 1400 sofa+ottoman))
Oct ingo=4080, outgo =5382 (-1302) (280 semiannual autoins, approximately 706 vacation spending+193 extra gas costs)
Nov ingo 4166, outgo 4391 (-225) 708gifts
Dec ingo 4389, outgo 6581 (-2192) 1000 xmas, 2K household
(net negative 1239)
June and July were travel months. September was a high spend month including a child's birthday, new computer, my birthday (plus the sofa purchase, not included).
October was Disneyworld trip.
November I talleyed up $700 in gifts, birthday for dd1, cash gift to Mom for thanksgiving, and xmas gifts. Dec ended up the year with another 1K in xmas related spending. We also spent 2K in household, including new fridge, new chairs for kitchen, Ikea trip, and replacement parts to fix oven handle.
In general if things have been household, have not necessarily reimbursed ourselves fully from house fund, but enough we do not have to pay interest charges on credit card. We did pay off fridge in full from house fund.

Talking with spouse, we spent more than usual on travel/vacations. I purchased an ooma to replace our home phone, that should save around $30? a month (we'll see). Main plans are to take lower key vacations this year, including trips to camp and possibly an overnight camping trip, and of course, pay off sofa. We keep talking about idea of instead of doing traditional Christmas, make a trip the main xmas "gift" (DD1 votes for great wolf lodge). We don't do well with splitting up our money into lots of "buckets". Only thing that seems to work is for us to automatically deduct amounts to go into savings, and work with what is left. Currently I'm taking out $50 each paycheck (1300 a year), which should normally replace the majority of emergency expenditures. I reduced amounts in my flexible health savings account. Will need to up the amount automatically deducted (another $15) to cover difference. Otherwise, no big changes.


Last edited by partgypsy1 on Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:35 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 8:36 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
In other news, mother is considering the viability of holding onto her house, and is seriously considering (finally) selling house. This of course trickles into panic from the two siblings who live there, with stressful calls/texts to me. No one likes change, especially if it means higher costs/lower standard of living. But the two siblings are not dealing with this in a rational fashion. Like if they freak out, or ignore, it won't happen. I just don't have the physical tolerance to deal with these freak outs like I used to. It's like they are pulling off a bandaid super slowly. Other than having the sleeper sofa in tv room, and a dresser we can move into that room, if needed. Otherwise not planning on making any drastic changes in my life/buy a larger house/lend large sums of money to bail them out. Harsh but that's the way it's going to be.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:52 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Looking at savings fund, our efund started with 10, 480. Currently stands at 5992, plus 5K (plus interest) in CD. Net +512.
Looking at house fund, started with 15,862. Ended with 8338, plus 6K (plus interest) in CDs, net -1524.

I tried to start a vacation fund, but ended up taking money out (beach trip) and transfering rest to efund. Unless we have a specific (expensive) vacation in mind, will most likely try to work into regular budget.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 6:17 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 6:48 am
Posts: 526
Location: Arkansas
First post had a lot of ingo's and outgo's and I kept looking for a yougo. :D

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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 8:08 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
:)

I know I seem anal going through these numbers, but it's the only way I can get a handle. 2013 big expeditures are, a) paying off the sofa (1100), b) paying for medical visits, and c) house renovations. We are all overdue for medical, dentists visits, which will primarily be out of pocket. I've had difficulty getting reimbursed via my FSA (particularly for dentist appts), no luck with the dental insurance I had tried (no pediatric dentists in our town covered by the insurance!) therefore we will use cash for these.
We still need to do remedial work on back foundation area, and put in gutters along the back of the house. We also need to make final decision whether we will expand back porch, and that needs to be decided Before the foundation work is started. If we decide that, then that will pretty much use up the house fund (14K). Because we are in a historic district, and where our property lines are, we would need to spend close to 1K, just to apply for a variance to expand the back porch! If we decide against the porch, we should make some kind of decision what to do with remaining house fund (8-10K). It's not enough to fix up the attic (which was original intent). Some of the options we've discussed is, keep it in reserve for future major house expenses (replacement of AC, roof, etc), return it to the mortgage, or use it for future non house expenses (when we need to replace car, braces for kids (my least favorite).
Oh well. At the least, reviewing numbers, I am at peace with how we spent our money, and hope to be even better how we spend money the coming year.


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 9:29 am 

Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 6:48 am
Posts: 526
Location: Arkansas
Doesn't seem anal at all. I know that's the only way I can keep track of things and keep myself "on track".

I just saw all those ingo's and outgo's and the first thing that popped into my mind was yougo :lol: I really am an old fart I guess. They stopped making them...what... 30 something years ago.

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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 10:49 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
At least it's a better name than the chevy nova


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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:03 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 6:48 am
Posts: 526
Location: Arkansas
partgypsy1 wrote:
At least it's a better name than the chevy nova


The old Nova's that resemble the muscle car era I like. If I'm not mistaken there was an old Nova that was a cousin to the Olds 442

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 Post subject: Re: The year of increasing the emergency fund
PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:42 am 

Joined: Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:37 am
Posts: 446
Been reading this blog Mr. Money Mustache, which may have already been mentioned in the forum and entries at Get Rich Slowly. The guy is a Jedi master of positive attitude and figuring out ways to get what he needs out of life without having to spend actual cash dollars. Although I don't aspire to quite that laser focus (otherwise would be punching myself in the face quite a lot), do realize I have gotten in the rut of spending money to solve problems. Lazy. For example, we go out to eat a lot. I don't mind going out, but that should be something we look forward to, not because we don't want to cook or forgot to do the dishes. And because we delayed spending money on furnishing our house so long, I developed an antipathy to the wooden boards and milk crate esthetic and went the entirely opposite direction, to wanting (and buying)"nice" (aka expensive) and new furnishings versus exploring all the various options in between. There will be 1 more blow out, where I'm going to Ikea for a couple bookcases and items for the home office, but I decided, the majority of stuff in that office, not going to switch out. Just going to replace a couple things, and make the rest work. This will be the year of pretending we have no money, or no money to spend that is. Hubby and I agreed that expanding the porch doesn't make sense for the amount of money that it would cost. But, it will be totally refurbished, with hubby doing 90% of the work. In the same way, 2013 will not be the year of luxury vacations. The kids will still get their summer camps, and we will visit the family cabin. Other than a possible trip when my Dad visits (to visit a nearby city and hence stay in a motel/hotel for a couple days) the vacations will be relatively local and low cost. When we were growing up, other than a cruise trip in High school, our family never took expensive vacations yet I have so many great memories from those times. I think we can replicate that.


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