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Archive for March, 2015

Wants

March 25th, 2015 at 02:52 pm

Even though I am trying hard to cut the budget and save wants are creeping in. As long as we stagger them it will be ok, and we aren't in any danger of not meeting our obligations.

The latest want: softball.

The partner and I paid $60 yesterday to join the a softball team in the city's league. I am choosing to look at this as an investment-an investment in our health because we will be playing and practicing weekly and an investment in our relationship because it is something else we can do together. Right now I am able to use his son's mitt, but I will probably have to buy my own soon. Other than that I shouldn't have to buy anything else except maybe some new socks and pants to play in.

The next want I'll probably wait until May for. I want to get hiking boots. The partner wants me to come hiking with him in the many local places we have, and we're definitely going to do some hiking when we go out west. So I have time to make room in our finances for a pair. I also think the boots will be a two fold investment.

As it stands I'm about $500 short for the May 10th payment, and only have $200 on my credit card. Only 8 days left to try to keep it under $1000 (I am confident I will do it!)

Yikes! It's been awhile

March 24th, 2015 at 11:31 am

Net worth went up last month, mostly because of the markets. This month's goal is to increase the net worth by $6,112.98. With everything that is going on I don't think I'll make it, but I should get close.

Roof

We're spending more than originally thought on the roof, but that's because we're also replacing the soffits and gutters. After this we shouldn't have to do a thing with the roof. We've paid half of the roof's materials costs already, and will pay the rest of the the balance once the job is done. We have $7430 remaining. That will all be put on the Southwest credit card and then I will transfer $2000 to one credit card I already have for 0% interest for 12 months, and the remainder to another 0% interest/12 months card that I already have. The plan will be to pay $675/month total to pay it off in 11 months. I will pay the minimum on the higher balance and attack the $2000 card until it's done, then pay the entire $675 to the remaining card.

Summer Travel

We're going to the West Coast to visit my family. This year we're bringing my partner's son and all of us couldn't be more excited. My partner and I each signed up for the Southwest cards spend $2000 get 50,000 points. We split the first roof charge on each of our cards and will use the points to book the plane tickets for all 3 of us. We'll stay at my family's house and they have already told us they'd pay for our rental car so all we'll be responsible for is the many baseball games we want to go for and fun stuff.

The Basement Apartment

This, unfortunately, is also going to be more than we were originally hoping and planning for. This is mostly because we have changed the scope a bit. We talked to a contractor on Saturday and told him everything we want to do (both for the basement apartment and also the entire house.) We gave him a range of $8-$12,000. He said he might be able to do it for $12,000, but then we'd be replacing everything next year. He thinks $15-$18,000 is more reasonable. Since we don't want to cheap out completely (we want things functional but that will last) we've revised our plan. The partner and I already have agreed on two things to scale back on that will save us $2,000. We won't completely replace all the flooring downstairs but use what is already there and we won't try to move the electrical box. If it becomes a problem we'll move it next summer, if not we'll save that money. The contractor is going to get us a budget and timeline this week, so we'll know better about what else we can cut out or save on.

I have written out a budget assuming this project will cost the entire $18,000. We can do it, but things will be way tighter than I would like for way longer than I would like. I worry if we have too many tight months in a row that we just won't be able to keep up the steam. But I would rather plan for spending more and be surprised when it's less.

Right now the plan to pay for the renovations is to get the discover 0% for 14 months card. I believe I can get a credit limit high enough for the project but since we don't all the information yet it is a little difficult to see how it will pan out. I did my best projections but they are only guesses at this point.

The goal right now is to keep spending low and really make every dollar work for us. We are trying to cash flow this whole expenditure and not take any money out of savings, but at least we have savings should we need it.

I have a spreadsheet where I have inputted all my know monthly expenses and income until December 2016. I estimate $1500 on credit card/unexpected/living expenses due on the 7th (because that's when my main credit card is due.) As I make payments from my checking account or make other credit card payments, I add them to the spreadsheet, as well as any unexpected income. Right now I am good until May 10th, when one of the roof credit cards is due. I am short about $400. I am not too worried, because my credit card that is due on the May 7th is only $100 right now, and I think I can easily keep it to until $1000 with 9 days left to go. (On the 2nd I'll switch my credit card use to a card that won't be due until May 28th-it's a juggling act but I never pay any interest and it works for me.) Worst case scenario is I rearrange some of the more flexible payments until after the credit card is due.

So, there we have it. I have a ton more to say/think out loud about but will leave it here for now.