Journey to Wealth-Building

New! Use this space to post your goals, accomplishments, and setbacks on your path to get rich slowly. Others can read about your situation, and provide critiques and motivation. Look here to find somebody who has experienced a situation similar to yours!

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Bichon Frise
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Bichon Frise » Fri Dec 07, 2012 1:14 pm

this may have been mentioned up thread, but I would get rid of the P2P lending accounts and the DRIP and use that to knock off some of the credit card debt. Also, I would focus as much to the one with the lower balance (I'm assuming they are about the same interest rate), to open up more cash flow. You give us the networth, but you may also want to look at your cash flow situation as well.
Bichon Frise

"If you only have 1 year to live, move to Penn...as it will seem like an eternity."

avocado wrote:Good to see you back, I was starting to miss your incisive commentary!

Ms Kitty Cliche
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Ms Kitty Cliche » Thu Dec 27, 2012 3:52 pm

It would severely complicate my taxes to do so. I don't desire to do that, and it's not that much money, so I'm simply withdrawing the money as the payments come in (why the value of my accounts have been going down slowly).

Decided to refinance the mortgage. Even though the changes in the FHA pmi calculation mean my pmi payment will double, I'll still save $150 a month overall, and in 5 years that will turn into $400 a month. Even if I never pay extra, I'll save about 60k over the life of the mortgage in interest.

I'll apply that $150 a month to burning down my cc debt which will speed things up considerably.

Ms Kitty Cliche
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Ms Kitty Cliche » Mon Jan 07, 2013 2:19 pm

I'm changing things up a bit with the new year. The focus of this is still going to be my net worth, but I'm going to be tracking some interim goals that I think are going to increase my networth, and also make it easier for me to have a feeling of accomplishment or motivation to improve.

In light of this, I will only be updated at the end of each month to report on how the goals panned out.

So - here are my monthly and yearly goals for 2013

Monthly

1. Make a debt snowball payment of at least $250 on cc debt
2. Maintain a positive cash flow
3. Add $100 to emergency savings
4. Get under budget on variable bills (groceries and discretionary)
5. Never have cc debt increase more than 5%

Year

1. End the year with at least $3000 in e-fund
2. Pay down cc debt by at least 3k (currently around 7k)
3. Re-assess all bills and trim what is possible, at least $200 per month.

N2Deep
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby N2Deep » Mon Jan 07, 2013 6:13 pm

Ms Kitty Cliche wrote:In light of this, I will only be updated at the end of each month to report on how the goals panned out.


I thought about doing this as well... but since I get paid ever other week it helps keep me more engaged in my finances by posting my accomplishments with each check. I'm hoping this engagement will also help me stay on track.

Best of luck on your goals.
I can not dwell over that to which I have no control...

Ms Kitty Cliche
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Ms Kitty Cliche » Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:52 pm

So, a baseline to compare to as I start off the year.

As of Jan 1st:

1) E-fund: 1768.05
2) CC debt: 7820.61
3) Monthly fixed bills = $3450
breakdown of bills - rounded up to nearest 10
mortgage - 1800 (includes taxes and pmi)
childcare - 800
medical copays for kidlet 1 - 450
utility costs (gas, water, sewer, electric) 300
phone (home phone, cell phone) 60
internet - 40
4) discretionary budgets: groceries - 600, discretionary 200

I find I do better if I have one goal at a time to focus on, so my first goal this year will be to start reassessing bills to increase my cash flow and make reducing our debts possible.

Right now I am in the midst of refinancing the mortgage, which will give me an interest rate drop of almost 2%, freeing up 150 or so per month in cash flow.

Our 2 biggest issues that are fixable are the grocery costs and the childcare costs. Our groceries are rather high because with the specifics of my son's disability, we have to be exceedingly careful he is not exposed to certain ingredients that are widely found in food. Which really drives up costs since we can't just necessarily buy generic items or jump on sales. The childcare issue will be resolving somewhat starting next school year as we will only need afterschool care for one kid who doesn't need to be driven all over for therapy appointments, so we can hire a local high school kid for this purpose. We only need someone about 10 hours per week, so hopefully it will be somewhere around $250 per month ($5-6 per hour).

I don't know yet how to get the groceries down, but to be honest, I also haven't greatly tried other than cooking lots of beans and buying in bulk at the farmers market and freezing things.

Bichon Frise
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Bichon Frise » Wed Jan 09, 2013 7:56 am

Ms Kitty Cliche wrote:It would severely complicate my taxes to do so. I don't desire to do that, and it's not that much money, so I'm simply withdrawing the money as the payments come in (why the value of my accounts have been going down slowly).


If you want to keep your DRIP and P2P for whatever reason - that's what your circle of friends do, you think it will take you to the promised land, etc etc - that's fine. While true that selling would "complicate" your taxes, you've already made that decision when you invested.

They may be doing well now, but the way you are invested in these accounts, you are setup to fail. Just my 2 cents. Good luck.
Bichon Frise

"If you only have 1 year to live, move to Penn...as it will seem like an eternity."

avocado wrote:Good to see you back, I was starting to miss your incisive commentary!

Ms Kitty Cliche
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Ms Kitty Cliche » Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:09 pm

January
1. Make a debt snowball payment of at least $250 on cc debt
Done - credit debt stands at 7319.32
2. Maintain a positive cash flow
Done - inputs were approx 110 above outputs
3. Add $100 to emergency savings
Done - added 632 to e-savings from spot bonus
Downside - had to buy a new furnace and refridgerator due to lighting strike. insurance covered it but had to pay deductable of $1000. Spent a little extra and upgraded to a higher efficiency furnance and fridge. Total cost $1527.
4. Get under budget on variable bills (groceries and discretionary)
Not quite. Went $10 over discretionary budget.
5. Never have cc debt increase more than 5%
CC debt went down! Hurray!

Year

1. End the year with at least $3000 in e-fund
Currently at just under $900.
2. Pay down cc debt by at least 3k (currently around 7k)
Down by about $500
3. Re-assess all bills and trim what is possible, at least $200 per month
I rejected the refinance as our PMI would have nearly tripled and while mortgage interest is tax deductible, pmi is no longer. I am hoping the more efficient fridge and furnace will bring down some utility bills.

Ms Kitty Cliche
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Ms Kitty Cliche » Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:42 pm

Not truly related but I got an acceptance letter from my first choice grad program. Woot! I'll be going after my MS in accounting next fall.

LeRainDrop
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby LeRainDrop » Thu Feb 07, 2013 3:23 pm

Ms Kitty Cliche wrote:Not truly related but I got an acceptance letter from my first choice grad program. Woot! I'll be going after my MS in accounting next fall.

Congratulations! That's awesome news!

fiddlefaddle
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby fiddlefaddle » Fri Feb 08, 2013 1:23 pm

That's great news! Congratulations!

Ms Kitty Cliche
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Ms Kitty Cliche » Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:50 am

February was an AMAZING month for us financially.

I got my first yearly bonus for my new job (was hired 3 days before the cutoff) - and wow. Got 4128 after taxes.

Used half to pay off cc debt and the other half went to my emergency fund.
Paid off the citi card in full - that one was at 21% so I was glad to see that go!

Filed my taxes and will get a refund of about 1800 but haven't received it yet.
This I plan to use somewhat frivolously and take a small vacation with the family. We haven't gone in 3 years so it will be a nice treat.

1. Make a debt snowball payment of at least $250 on cc debt
Done - credit debt stands at 5023 vs a little over 7k last month!
I also took out a personal loan at 5.2% for the remainder of my cc debt and paid the cards, which were at 12%, off in full. Now I have a structured monthly payment for 3 years with the ability to prepay without penalty.
2. Maintain a positive cash flow
Done - inputs were approx 2400 above outputs.
3. Add $100 to emergency savings
Done - added 2050 to efund. Total is now $3258.
4. Get under budget on variable bills (groceries and discretionary)
Went down by "eating from the pantry." Was under by $82.
5. Never have cc debt increase more than 5%
CC debt went down! Hurray!

Year

1. End the year with at least $3000 in e-fund
Done. New goal is 5,000.
2. Pay down cc debt by at least 3k (currently around 7k)
Down to 5,050.
3. Re-assess all bills and trim what is possible, at least $200 per month
The utility bills this month did reflect a drop of about $21, mostly the gas bill, so it seems like the new more efficient furnace is working out well. The next month will mean more since the current bill only had the new appliances for about 2 weeks.

Ms Kitty Cliche
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Re: Journey to Wealth-Building

Postby Ms Kitty Cliche » Thu Mar 28, 2013 9:52 am

At the end of q1 2013, i want to look at my balance sheet compared to the last one i recorded on 12/7 and see if my actions have led to any significant improvements. And they have.
I’m especially happy in the growth of my non-home equity net worth, given the wild fluctuations of home prices. If I treat the consolidation loan as credit debt, my credit debt has gone down by $2,000, and my cash assets have gone up by $3400, making it far more likely I will continue to pull out of debt.
Our income has increased about $400 per month, which is a significant chunk of how this is happening, but we have also managed to make small decreases in monthly spending, particularly in utility and grocery costs.
Overall, it was a fantastic quarter for us. Here’s looking to the rest of 2013!

Balance sheet 3/28 vs Balance sheet 12/7
13246.79 Net Worth 6829.53

265745.40 Total Assets 262830.59

Cash Accounts Cash Accounts
3460.01 Checking 1547.89
279.05 maintenance fund 0.00
3000.00 emergency fund 1756.94
6739.06 Total Cash 3304.83

Investment Accounts Investment Accounts
745.31 prosper (p2p) 849.18
0.00 lending club (p2p) 58.65
3546.20 etrade (stock grants) 2606.15
129.69 Sharebulider (drip account) 94.09
16031.31 Fidelity 401k 13884.41
941.45 Kidlet 1 529 933.49
912.38 Kidlet 2 529 899.79
22306.34 Total Investments 19325.76

Physical Assets Physical Assets
2700.00 Car (KBB) 2200.00
234000.00 House (avg Trulia + Zillow) 238000.00
236700.00 Total Physical Assets 240200.00

252498.61 Total Liabilities 256001.06
Credit Cards Credit Cards
0.00 Citi 2767.59
0.00 Discover 3761.94
0.00 Chase 258.16
0.00 Total Credit 6787.69

Fixed Rate Loans Fixed Rate Loans
233984.02 Mortgage 235211.73
3580.76 Student Loan 1 3650.95
4408.64 Student Loan 2 4458.80
4802.12 Student Loan 3 4858.45
992.10 Student Loan 4 1033.44
4730.97 CC consolidation loan ( 5k for 36 mos) 0.00
252498.61 Total Loans 249213.37


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