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A place for Get Rich Slowly readers to ask questions
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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:58 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
10/11 balance sheet

Assets - Total $ 260395.87

cash accounts
Checking - $ 1683.14
Maintenance Savings - $ 0.00
Emergency fund - $ 151.62
Total $ 1834.76

investment accounts
Prosper (p2p lending)- $ 999.27
Lending Club (p2p lending) - $ 26.71
Etrade (restricted stock grants) - $ 2799.75
Sharebuilder (dividend reinvestment acct) - $ 74.77
Fidelity 401k - $ 13182.70
Kidlet 1 529k - $ 930.31
Kidlet 2 529k - $ 895.60
Total $ 18909.11

physical assets
Car (2002 subcompact) - $2200 - low end Kelly Blue Book
Scooter(2007 chinese knockoff) - $ 252 - Priceonomics est.
House - $ 237200 average of zillow and trulia estimates
Total $ 239652.00

Liabilities - Total $ 258065.49

Credit Cards
Citicard - $ 2821.46 (carrying balance)
Discover - $ 4738.82 (sadly it looks like I will be carrying part of this over)
Chase - $ 126.96 (paid off each month)
Total $ 7687.24


fixed rate loans
Mortgage - $ 235882.91 (@5%, 330 months left)
Student loan 1 - $ 5927.30 (@6.4%, 80 months left)
Student loan 2 - $ 8173.04 (@5.2%, 80 months left)
personal loan from family - $ 395.00 @ 0%
Total $ 250378.25

Net worth - $ 2330.38

We also have another 1100 coming in - but it hasn't posted in the checking account, so this is actually 3400.

Slowly we are pulling our way back out of this slump! Got my first "new job" paycheck - it is a full $115 higher than my old paycheck.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2012 1:25 pm 

Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 7:35 am
Posts: 1148
Location: Maryland
Hey Ms. Kitty,
I'm curious as to how you can always use your CC but only have 150 dollars in your emergency fund? Do you have emergencies or you just put everything on your card with hopes to pay it off. Is there anyway you can boost your emergency fund so you don't have to worry about carrying over CC debt?

Maybe you can cut back on SOMEthing, just to get that e-fund a little higher. *shrug*

I know I wouldn't be able to stand only have 150 as a backup with two kidlets. I have no kidlets and 150 dollars wouldn't do in my case. I always want to do something fun with my extra money, but knowing my efund is in place, I don't worry too much about it.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Mon Oct 15, 2012 3:17 pm 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
Well, I can't really boost my e fund at the moment because practically all of our bills are fixed except groceries. We've cut out eating out and buying anything new unless we are replacing something that's worn out etc. Alot of our bills are home mortgage, child care and my eldest son's therapy bills.

The biggest issue is that in July we had an efund of almost 3000 and then had almost 7000 worth of emergencies in 2 months. Two major car accidents and a whole lot of home repairs that couldn't wait because they were dangerous. Right now I'm just focusing on paying off the cc bills and I have 50 per paycheck autofunding to my efund account to slowly build it back up.

It is a major issue right now though.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 12:38 pm 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
10/23 balance sheet

Assets - Total $ 259,405.00

cash accounts
Checking - $ 703.25
Maintenance Savings - $ 0.00
Emergency fund - $ 171.62
Total $ 874.87

investment accounts
Prosper (p2p lending)- $ 1002.40
Lending Club (p2p lending) - $ 26.84
Etrade (restricted stock grants) - $ 2796.45
Sharebuilder (dividend reinvestment acct) - $ 78.99
Fidelity 401k - $ 13390.49
Kidlet 1 529k - $ 933.49
Kidlet 2 529k - $ 901.47
Total $ 19130.13

physical assets
Car (2002 subcompact) - $2200 - low end Kelly Blue Book
House - $ 237200 average of zillow and trulia estimates
Total $ 239400

Liabilities - Total $ 257,597.79

Credit Cards
Citicard - $ 2786.82 (carrying balance)
Discover - $ 4139.87 (carrying balance)
Chase - $ 467.96 (paid off each month)
Total $ 7394.54

fixed rate loans
Mortgage - $ 235882.91 (@5%, 330 months left)
Student loan 1 - $ 5927.30 (@6.4%, 80 months left)
Student loan 2 - $ 8173.04 (@5.2%, 80 months left)
personal loan from family - $ 220.00 @ 0%
Total $ 250,203.25

Net worth - $ 1807.21
Since the last month, we’ve kept our spending to necessities: groceries, gas and fixed bills, with the exception of the costs associated with me applying to grad school (which my work will pay full tuition for.) $250 to take the GMAT, approximately $200 in application fees and fees for ordering transcripts from previous schools to apply to 2 universities.

CC debt went down but at a snails pace, but slowly we are pulling out. I think the major repairs are behind us until spring. We have another 19 trees that I believe will have to come down because they are weakened from the drought, but the arborist agreed they weren’t an immediate risk and we have left them to see if any recover. The driveway is also beginning to crack so severely that I have worries that the winter/spring freeze thaw may completely destroy it. I tried my best to patch the cracks and seal it in the hopes of getting another year out of it.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 4:30 pm 

Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 9:44 pm
Posts: 275
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Hi Ms. Kitty, good job on the DIY driveway repair! If you haven't already, you ought to call each of your credit card companies to see if they would be willing to reduce your interest rates. I don't know what they are at right now, but you want to make sure they are as low as the company is willing to offer you.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 4:50 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2012 3:33 pm
Posts: 1
Ms. Kitty Cliche: I am new to GRS and your ongoing financial story is the first topic I have read. Thank you for opening your life and finances for all to see and discuss. If you do not mind, I have a few questions and comments for you. Forgive me if they have already been asked or are too personal.

I know it is not proper to ask a lady her age but could you tell me what decade you were born in. It gives an idea how far along one should be on the road to financial security.

Regarding your balance sheet I have one general and several specific comments. Generally speaking, I question your definition of an asset. To me, an asset is something one owns that has the ability to produce income. Examples would include stocks, bonds, CD's, money on deposit and rental property. Things I do not consider assets would include primary residences, vehicles and personal property. When you include these non-income producing items in a family balance sheet you might be painting a more rosy picture than actually exists.

As for the specific entries on the balance sheet, here goes:
The 529 plans set up for your children should be on THEIR balance sheet , not yours.

I believe it has been mentioned before but your lack of a cash stash means you are one disaster away from insolvency. It is suggested that one has at a minimum of three months worth of expenses in cash. If you are a one income household that amount should be more like six months worth. I would recommend moving ALL your post tax money into a very liquid form. If you are contributing to a retirement account it might be advisable to suspend it until your immediate cash fund is at a more healthy level.

I hope you do not think I am being too critical. I have been in your position before, except that my financial hardship was due to foolish actions on my part. Fortunately over the past fifteen years I have not only been able to pay off all my long term obligations(ex-mortgage) but I am turning earned income into a recurring stream of unearned income by means of dividend paying stocks and rental income.

Again, thank you for opening your life for all to see and learn from.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 5:14 pm 

Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:34 pm
Posts: 477
Zonny wrote:
Generally speaking, I question your definition of an asset. To me, an asset is something one owns that has the ability to produce income.


The dictionary definition of an asset is "an item of ownership convertible into cash." So yes, a home and a car may be considered assets. I think you may be confusing "assets" with "investments."


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 5:19 pm 

Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:34 pm
Posts: 477
Ms Kitty Cliche wrote:
We also have another 1100 coming in - but it hasn't posted in the checking account, so this is actually 3400.

Slowly we are pulling our way back out of this slump! Got my first "new job" paycheck - it is a full $115 higher than my old paycheck.


Did your $1100 ever come in? I didn't see it in the differences, but it's also hard to compare in this format.

That's awesome on the raise! That's a significant additional amount per paycheck. It's also nice that your work will pay for your grad school tuition. As one who's still paying on her student loans, I have much appreciation for free education, and am glad you're able to take advantage of that opportunity.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 6:06 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
To answer the several questions - as I said above, I too am worried about my lack of savings and am working on it. I had a much more robust emergency fund just a few months ago, but then had emergencies, mostly damages on my property from the drought this summer that created safety hazards and had to be addressed immediately combined with bad luck with our car.

Secondly, I qualify my kid's college savings accounts as my money since I qualify the cost of their education as my liability. While they will certainly contribute to the cost, because I believe that having skin in the game is important, I want them to be able to have the luxury of focusing on being a student that I never had.

As far as the income that seems to have been evaporated, it was used to pay my monthly childcare costs of $1000 and the rest went to copays for my eldest' therapy. Having a child with a disability is very very expensive. You cannot just put them in daycare or have them walk home by themselves. Therapist appointments are generally during working hours so either one parent must stay home( something we consider too risky in an economy where a job loss might go on for 2-3 years) or you hire an in home care provider. I am saving some money because I hired my father, who works for about half what we used to pay. In addition, it helps him because he was working at McDonalds for about the same money but hated it. Now he gets to spend time with grandkids and still bring home a paycheck.

Things are slowly looking up around here. It's going to be a long slog. If we can get to the end of the year without more trees falling down or car accidents - given that I only have 8 trees and drive less than 100 miles a month, hopefully not too hard to do - we should be able to catch up.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:25 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
11/12 balance sheet

Assets - Total $ 261,204.86

cash accounts
Checking - $ 1118.93
Maintenance Savings - $ 0.00
Emergency fund - $ 216.72
Total $ 1335.65

investment accounts
Prosper (p2p lending)- $ 1002.56
Lending Club (p2p lending) - $ 32.74
Etrade (restricted stock grants) - $ 2554.45
Sharebuilder (dividend reinvestment acct) - $ 85.02
Fidelity 401k - $ 13306.30
Kidlet 1 529k - $ 915.21
Kidlet 2 529k - $ 872.93
Total $ 18769.21

physical assets
Car (2002 subcompact) - $2200 - low end Kelly Blue Book
House - $ 238,900 average of zillow and trulia estimates
Total $ 241100.00

Liabilities - Total $ 256,598.01

Credit Cards
Citicard - $ 2730.77 (carrying balance)
Discover - $ 4018.86 (carrying balance)
Chase - $ 21.27 (paid off each month)
Total $ 6770.90

fixed rate loans
Mortgage - $ 235,548.02 (@5%, 330 months left)
Student loan 1 - $ 8145.76 (@6.4%, 80 months left)
Student loan 2 - $ 5913.33 (@5.2%, 80 months left)
personal loan from family - $ 220.00 @ 0%
Total $ 249827.11

Net worth - $ 4606.85


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:38 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
Just as interest, taking a look between 10/23 and today, here are some points (this is mostly for my own motivation.)

1) I locked up our credit cards except the chase which only has a 500 limit, limiting our spending.
2) I paid off 624.64 in credit card debt
3) the whole family was able to get annual physicals and eye check ups without any out of pocket spending because i put money in our health fsa last january. There is 200 left for the year, which is just about the exact amount of copays for kidlet 1s therapy appts.
4) our emergency fund is up 45. Not a lot, but improving.
5) There is enough money in check to pay all of our misc bills and buy groceries plus about 200 extra until our next payday, which means we are finally pulling out of living one month ahead.

Tiny, slow progress, but progress all the same.


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2012 10:28 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
11/26 balance sheet

Assets - Total 262,028.59

cash accounts
Checking - $ 872.01
Maintenance Savings - $ 0.00
Emergency fund - $ 1731.72
Total $ 2603.73

investment accounts
Prosper (p2p lending)- $ 911.52
Lending Club (p2p lending) - $ 32.90
Etrade (restricted stock grants) - $ 2612.53
Sharebuilder (dividend reinvestment acct) - $ 94.30
Fidelity 401k - $ 13752.60
Kidlet 1 529k - $ 927.93
Kidlet 2 529k - $ 893.08
Total $ 19,224.86

physical assets
Car (2002 subcompact) - $2200 - low end Kelly Blue Book
House - $ 238000 average of zillow and trulia estimates
Total $ 240,200

Liabilities - Total $ 256,599.84

Credit Cards
Citicard - $ 2758.64 (carrying balance)
Discover - $4395.90 (carrying balance)
Chase - $ 206.16 (paid off each month)
Total $ 7360.70


fixed rate loans
Mortgage - $ 235,148.02 (@5%, 330 months left)
Student loan 1 - $ 3674.66 (@6.4%, 80 months left)
Student loan 1 - $ 4488.32 (@6.4%, 80 months left)
Student loan 2 - $ 4888.34 (@5.2%, 80 months left)
Student loan 2 - $ 1039.80 (@5.2%, 80 months left)
personal loan from family - $ 44 @ 0%
Total $ 249,239.14

Net worth - $ 5428.75


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2012 10:30 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
So, the art fair that seemed to be a bust in September led to a number of sales off my etsy store - which all went straight to my emergency fund after $100 was put aside for supplies and the requisite 27% for taxes.

Finally progress!


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 11:37 am 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
12/7 balance sheet

Assets - Total 262,830.59
*minus house – 24,830.59

cash accounts
Checking - $1547.89
Maintenance Savings - $ 0
Emergency fund - $ 1756.94
Total $ 3304.83

investment accounts
Prosper (p2p lending)- $ 849.18
Lending Club (p2p lending) - $ 58.65
Etrade (restricted stock grants) - $ 2606.15
Sharebuilder (dividend reinvestment acct) - $ 94.09
Fidelity 401k - $ 13884.41
Kidlet 1 529k - $ 933.49
Kidlet 2 529k - $ 899.79
Total $ 19325.76

physical assets
Car (2002 subcompact) - $2200 - low end Kelly Blue Book
House - $ 238000 average of zillow and trulia estimates
Total $ 240,200

Liabilities - Total $ 256,001.06
*minus mortgage = 20,789.33

Credit Cards
Citicard - $ 2767.59(carrying balance)
Discover - $ 3761.94(carrying balance)
Chase - $ 258.16(paid off each month)
Total $ 6787.69


fixed rate loans
Mortgage - $ 235211.73(@5%, 330 months left)
Student loan 1 - $ 3650.95(@6.4%, 80 months left)
Student loan 1 - $ 4458.80(@6.4%, 80 months left)
Student loan 2 - $ 4858.45(@5.2%, 80 months left)
Student loan 2 - $ 1033.44(@5.2%, 80 months left)
personal loan from family - $ 0 @ 0%
Total $ 249,213.37

Net worth - $ 6829.53
Without considering home or mortgage = 4041.26


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 Post subject: Re: Journey to Wealth-Building
PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 12:11 pm 

Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:28 am
Posts: 88
Made one goal for the year - I paid back the money borrowed from my inlaws!

I also have an emergency fund (again.) I think this time I need at least 5k in there to be safe. Not having enough landed me right back in CC debt.

I've decided to reduce my 401k contributions from 5 to 3%, just enough to get the full company match, and apply the extra money to my credit cards until they get paid off again.

On the downside, there is a strong possibility that there will be no bonus this year - and either way they will be tiny - thanks to a variety of market issues. Sad face.


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